Myriel, St. Paul
We recently visited Myriel, a new-ish restaurant by Chef Karyn Tomlinson in St. Paul. Myriel is mostly a ticketed tasting menu with one seating per night, but they also have a few spots for a la carte diners. We did the tasting menu with a drink pairing.
Chef Tomlinson was the Chef at Corner Table (RIP) and also worked at Faviken (also RIP) and Meritage (thankfully not RIP). She describes Myriel as "old peasant French meets new Nordic." The team at Myriel works closely with local farmers for meat and produce and they also forage for ingredients.
The meal opened with an amuse bouche of pickled cucumber, carrot, and beet introduced by Chef Tomlinson herself. She gave us an overview of the restaurant and what we could expect from the meal.
The whole tasting took about 2.5 hours and was wonderfully-paced to allow for some digestion time between courses. We certainly noticed the influence of Chef Tomlinson's history at Meritage and Corner Table throughout the meal, as well as the influence of restaurants like Faviken or noma in the hyper-local farmed and foraged ingredients. The drink pairing started with their gin martini followed by a series of delicious and interesting wines. The servers explained each dish as well as where the ingredients came from. The atmosphere was cozy, classy, and relaxing with extreme attention to detail (the live floral arrangement in the bathroom coordinated with the floral arrangement depicted in a painting on the wall of the bathroom). All in all, a fabulous meal and experience. We'll definitely be back.
Charcuterie: duck pate, bresaola, cheese cracker with pickled squash
Served with lemon verbena tea
Lamb with birch-infused creme fraiche and beet. A perfectly balanced bite with the sliver of pickled onion.
Foraged green salad with asparagus and fiddleheads over brined cheese + leek and oyster mushroom tart in a buckwheat shell.
Hen egg omelette with bottarga mayo. A perfectly-executed french omelette with the perfect amount of fishiness from the bottarga mayo.
Rutabaga soup with buckwheat honey and toasty, crispy wild rice.
Heirloom corn cake with pork belly and maple syrup + duck confit fritter with the most delicious sweet and tangy apple mustard.
Great lakes walleye mousseline. Impeccable balance between the richness of the mousseline and butter sauce and the tang and acidity in the sauce. (Served with foraged ramps that I did not get a good picture of.)
Young hen with duck consomme and spring onions, served with bread and butter to soak up the extra consomme.
Juniper-smoked pork loin with rhubarb and wild ginger. Before serving, Chef Tomlinson brought out the full pork loin on a platter to show everyone this gorgeous creation atop a bed of smoking pine. I'd never had rhubarb in a savory application before, and this was a revelation!
Fennel granité as a palate cleanser/pre-dessert, served with candied fennel and kombucha
Nettle ice cream with watercress oil, served with Swedish egg coffee