A beet salad — in any shape or form — is a real staple on restaurant menus. But one too many times, the beet and goat cheese combinations I’ve ordered have turned out to be merely "meh" — not bad, but not great. During a dinner at Juni, the elegant yet cozy restaurant located in Hotel Chandler in New York’s Midtown, I finally found a beet dish worth praising. The appetizer, simply called Blue Moon Acres Beets, was a beautifully presented dish of different shapes and sizes of both red and yellow beets, plated atop a swirl of citrus sauce, and finished with dots of goat cheese cream and red ribbon sorrel.
As the name revealed, the beets were locally sourced from Blue Moon Acres Farm in New Jersey, and they were indeed juicy, sweet, and fresh. Combined with the light citrus sauce, the hint of airy goat cheese, and the slight bitterness of the greens, the dish made perfect sense. And as it was created by the Michelin-starred executive chef Shaun Hergatt, I would have expected nothing less.
If I’d have to find a complaint, it would be that the dish was so pretty I had a hard time "destroying" it with my fork. And once I broke down and started eating, I soon wished the dish would have been slightly bigger…
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