New Chef Aaron Taylor Puts Stamp On STK's Menu

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About a month ago, we watched Aaron Taylor defect from Meat Market to take the top spot at STK, after Ralph Pagano went off to the races. And since a new chef usually means new menu items, you can look forward to a taste of something different next time you drop in for dinner at the restaurant that infamously declares it's "not your daddy's steakhouse."

What that really means, is that this scene is usually late night driven, with cocktails and celeb sightings galore, food possibly taking a back seat to the people watching. Big flavors are popular here, in addition to the giant hunks of red meat, obviously, many of STK's signature dishes are pretty heavy duty on the palate; foie gras French toast, lobster Rockefeller, short ribs.

Nevertheless Taylor has championed several straightforward dishes that are surprisingly simplified for STK's menu, like a buratta salad with heirloom tomatoes and fresh basil. There are also refined details; thin ribbons of heart of palm folded into a petite salad, with tiny slices of citrus and a spicy habanero vinaigrette. A sprinkling of edamame on crusty glazed sea bass with a meaty oyster mushroom, seems delicate in comparison to some of STK's usual fare.

A creamy lump of burrata ($15) hides sweet heirloom red and yellow tomatoes, fresh basil and pine nuts add fragrance and crunch.

The Chilean sea bass ($36) with oyster mushrooms and edamame, uses fried sprout leaves as a salty, crispy garnish.

Even the rack of lamb ($39) seemed less overdone extravagance, and more like comfort food, served with a dollop of sweet potato puree and a rosemary port demi-glace.

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