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Wylie Dufresne

Fri, 05/30/2008 - 20:17
Submitted by admin_rg
wd~50 New York

Monday, September 15 1:00PM—2:10PM

Innovations at wd~50 Savory Workshop


The son of a designer and a restaurateur, maverick chef Wylie Dufresne was born in Providence, Rhode Island, in 1970. After completing a BA in philosophy at Colby College, Maine, in 1992, Dufresne enrolled in the French Culinary Institute in New York. Just over a decade later, Dufresne opened the humble Lower East Side restaurant that is today home to the constant and playful innovation that has made his name one of most recognized in American avant garde cuisine.

After graduating from FCI, Dufresne worked at Jo Jo's until being tapped by Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten to work on the opening of Jean-Georges, where Dufresne eventually became sous chef. In 1998, Dufresne was hired as chef de cuisine at Vongerichten's Prime in The Bellagio, Las Vegas. In 1999, he left Prime to become the first chef at 71 Clinton Fresh Food, a 30-seat restaurant on Manhattan's Lower East Side where his father, Dewey, was a partner. Rising above the challenges of the miniscule kitchen, the restaurant, which offered fine dining in a casual atmosphere, garnered much favorable press attention.

In April 2003, with the help of partners Vongerichten and Phil Suarez, Dufresne moved across the street to 50 Clinton, and opened wd~50, a 70-seat eatery with a state-of-the-art kitchen. Dufresne's innovative cuisine is an ever-evolving palette of taste, texture, presentations, and techniques, and the restaurant prides itself on the fact that the chefs all work in a collaborative fashion, continually experimenting and sharing ideas.

In 2000, Dufresne was a James Beard nominee for “Rising Star Chef of the Year.” In 2004, wd~50 was nominated by the James Beard Foundation in the category of “Best New Restaurant,” and in 2005, Restaurant Magazine voted wd~50 34th in its annual list of The World's 50 Best Restaurants“ issue. Dufresne was named a Rising Star in 2005, and received 1 star in the Michelin Guide's inaugural American edition of 2006 (which the restaurant has retained in 2007 and 2008). The James Beard Foundation nominated Dufresne for “Best Chef New York” in 2007, and that same year Dufresne was conferred with an honorary degree of Doctor of Culinary Arts from Johnson & Wales University. In March 2008, Frank Bruni awarded wd~50 3 stars in The New York Times and Dufresne was nominated yet again for The James Beard Foundation’s “Best Chef, New York City.”


Eggs Benedict
Chef Wylie Dufresne of WD~50 – New York, NY
Adapted by

Yield: 4 Servings


• 10 egg yolks
• Salt and cayenne pepper

• 60 grams gelatin, bloomed
• 640 grams butter, melted
• 2 grams Hexaphosphate
• .6 grams citric acid
• 3.5 grams gellan gum
• 170 grams water
• 100 grams egg yolks
• 110 grams water
• 10 grams Ultrasperse M
• Salt
• Lemon juice
• Flour
• Beaten eggs (egg wash)
• Ground English muffin crumbs (or breadcrumbs)

• 100 grams Canadian bacon, frozen

• Chive points
• Sea salt


Season yolks with salt and cayenne. Fill a 1-inch x 12-inch plastic sleeve with the yolks and tie the top with string to secure. Let stand upright for two hours to allow any air to rise to the top. Cook the yolk-filled sleeves upright in a water bath for seventeen minutes at 70°C/158°F. Ice down sleeves and portion the yolks into inch-long pieces.

Dissolve gelatin into melted butter and reserve. Blend Hexaphosphate, citric acid, gellan gum, and water together and bring to a boil in a small pot. Pour into a container and cool until completely set. Place in a blender with the 100 grams of egg yolks and mix well. Pour half of the gelatin/butter mix into the blender as you would with a classic hollandaise. Combine water and Ultrasperse M, mixing well, and then combine with the remaining half of the gelatin/butter mixture. Add to the mixture in the blender (the blender should be running throughout all of these steps). At this point a thick and creamy sauce should have formed. Adjust the seasoning with salt and lemon juice. Pour sauce into a shallow baking tray lined with plastic and allow to chill 8 hours (or overnight). The next day, cut the hollandaise into cubes and bread them using a classic three step process: flour, egg wash, and English muffin crumbs. Reserve the breaded cubes in the freezer.

Thinly slice the bacon on a deli slicer and fry in oil at 375°C until crispy. Pat dry and reserve.

Gently warm egg yolks in a low oven. Pan-fry the hollandaise cubes and then place in oven to warm through. Place two pieces of egg yolk on each plate and garnish with bacon, hollandaise, chives, and salt. Serve immediately.

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