When the one restaurant in town that no one can get into — much less afford! — offers a free anniversary preview open house, the city shows up. Hundreds wrapped around the block to peek inside Jose Andres‘ MiniBar (and BarMini!), open to the general public for one night only in honor of its 10th Anniversary (and first in its new location).
Entering by the dozen, guests first sampled a spirit from the cocktail list at BarMini, served in antique glassware (collected in three different states!) while pining to perch on the famous Cactus Couch… but a quick word via video chat from Jose (abroad and unable to attend) and they were off to the main, and most anticipated, part of the tour — MiniBar!
“Big kiss, sorry I’m not there with you, but my spirit is with all of you,” shouted Andres. “Hasta Pronto! And I hope you’re going to be enjoying… the great ‘Philly Cheesesteak’ that is probably the first export ever of MiniBar to the world.”
Which they did. Gobbling up crunchy filo dough filled with cheddar cheese mousse and topped with kobe beef and truffle oil, the masses got their first taste of Andres’ exclusive experience. Now larger (12 seats), and allowing 24 people to dine per evening on a 30 “course” menu of mini bites, the cheesesteak was an introductory nibble into a full dinner’s masterpiece.
“The idea of minibar is full interaction with the chefs,” explained Chef Ruben García. “You sit right in front of the Chefs and they serve you.” Or — tucked off to the side in a separate alcove, is Jose’s own table for close friends and family.
Upon leaving, attendees received a note from Jose (we’re all friends and can sit at the special table now, right?!) and tested their luck to draw one of a pair of complementary MiniBar dinners for two.