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In this week's Food & Drink Mike Sula reviews Trenchermen, the long-awaited union of brothers Pat and Mike Sheerin, veterans of, respectively, the Signature Room and Blackbird. Teaming up with impresarios Kevin Heisner and Matt Eisler, they've transformed the former bathhouse that housed Spring into a darkly gorgeous space with a steampunkish air that "presents a discombobulating contrast to the precise, elegantly arranged plates the brothers are putting forth." These contain contrasts in themselves: pork belly and plums with bubble gum, panna cotta made with bitter pale wheat ale, sheets of shaved cured chicken breast draped among deep-fried cylinders of shredded pickle and fat dabs of fuchsia-colored beet yogurt. Sula finds curiosities abundant in the glass and bottle too, with interesting wines and cocktails from beverage director Tona Palomino, including "the best and most balanced" Malort drink since Brad Bolt's Hard Sell. Beginning this Sunday, August 26, from 10 AM to 2 PM, the Sheerins will offer their take on that often maligned meal, brunch.
In Key Ingredient, Nellcote's Ray Stanis, after much trial and error, manages to coax mochiko, glutinous rice flour, into gnocchi, topping them off with sauteed chanterelles, corn, and blueberries. Next up is Ben Sheagren of Hopleaf, working with coffee.