Features on StarChefs.com
On the Plate: Notable Presentations
September 2007
vol.12
wd~50
New York, NY
Cranberry-Lychee Vacherin with Violet Meringue, Whipped Cream, Raspberry Marshmallow on starchefs.com
Soft Chocolate, Avocado, Licorice, Lime

Stupak’s miniature pliable ganache guides the eye from one end of the plate to other – through tiny hurdles of dehydrated lime paper, and powdered piles of chocolate meringue. Colored geysers of avocado and mint puree are both close to, and far away from, the chocolate bridge.

Pastry Chef Alex Stupak
wd~50
New York, NY
Cranberry-Lychee Vacherin with Violet Meringue, Whipped Cream, Raspberry Marshmallow on starchefs.com
“Creamsicle,” Rooibos, Persimmon, Orange Blossom

Stupak avoids any sense of heaviness on the plate and creates a sense of movement with a curling line – a clear orange blossom ribbon weaving its way through candied flecks of orange peel, persimmon puree and rooibos cream to a frozen liquid-centered “creamsicle.”

Pastry Chef Alex Stupak
wd~50
New York, NY
Cranberry-Lychee Vacherin with Violet Meringue, Whipped Cream, Raspberry Marshmallow on starchefs.com
Yuzu Curd, Shortbread, Spruce Yogurt, Pistachio

Golden rectangles of yuzu curd have the soft edges of sliced cheese, placed as if on crackers, and delicately dotted with accoutrements. Limiting his palette to greens and whites, using only a third of the space on the plate, Stupak maintains a balance of organic and planned symmetry – like a picnic might look in the courtyard of New York’s Museum of Modern Art.

Pastry Chef Alex Stupak
Varietal
New York, NY
Cranberry-Lychee Vacherin with Violet Meringue, Whipped Cream, Raspberry Marshmallow on starchefs.com
Chocolate Puree, Pear Sorbet, Mushroom Caramel, Frankincense

Kahn’s dessert menu is a multiverse of alternate desserts universes. In this case, the sharp, organic forms of dehydrated chocolate mousse and crystallized mushrooms tower dramatically like the fictional fortress, Castle Grayskull. On the outskirts, a wobbling, encapsulated pear sphere threatens the landscape with its liquid center.

Pastry Chef Jordan Kahn
Varietal
New York, NY
Cranberry-Lychee Vacherin with Violet Meringue, Whipped Cream, Raspberry Marshmallow on starchefs.com
Meditation in Purple

Literal monotony with Kahn is mottled and fresh in this strictly purple composition: blackcurrant gel with the texture of toothpaste. Cubes of Campari sponge. A crumpled pile of see-through hibiscus cellophane. And a quenelle of rooibos ice cream tucked in a fold of skin that looks freshly shed from a molting chocolate snake, left in a lovely wreckage of purples.

Pastry Chef Jordan Kahn
Varietal
New York, NY
Cranberry-Lychee Vacherin with Violet Meringue, Whipped Cream, Raspberry Marshmallow on starchefs.com
The Absinthe

Absinthe’s pleasant, psychoactive properties may be absent from Kahn’s dish, but visually, they assert themselves in bright colors and kinetically charged black sesame lines. Liquid sable twirls into an inverted rollercoaster and a quenelle of sour apple sorbet waits at the end of the track.

Pastry Chef Jordan Kahn