Eleven Madison Park Restaurant
11 Madison Avenue
New York, New York
The ghosts of underwriters past must be watching in wonderment at the goings-on in the old Met Life Building, where since 1998, restaurant maestro Danny Meyers' Union Square Hospitality Group has been operating a modern French restaurant. The high-ceilinged Art Deco dining room, with its views of Madison Park and its limited-edition Riedel decanters on display, can't help but impress, but the main attractions are Executive Chef Daniel Humm's food and the outstanding wine list by John Ragan, wine director. (Try the Lavender Honey-Glazed Muscovy Duck for Two, paired with Domaine des Relagnes' 2001 Les Petits Pieds d'Armand Châteauneuf-du Pape.) Also, take a gander at the Scrabble board wine list near the bar.
Number of selections: 2,150
Bottles in inventory: 12,500
Number of wines by the glass: 60
BYO: Yes; 4 bottle maximum unless prior arrangements are made.
Corkage Fee: $35
Wine list highlights: Fine and rare wines from all over the world. Some of the best lesser-known wines of Burgundy: St. Aubin, Chassagne-Montrachet rouge, Chitry, Irancy and Monthelie. Plus Billecart-Salmon Champagne, Coche-Dury Corton-Charlemagne; Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux. Verticals of Dom Perignon OEnothèque back to the 1960s; Domaine de la Romanée-Conti back to the 1980s; López de Heredia to 1954; many bottlings from the great Vouvray producer, Domaine Huet, including the monumental 1945.