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Watch: The Del Posto Tasting Menu Takes Just the Right Amount of Risks

The NYC restaurant’s new executive chef is technical, but not rigid

Eater’s original series 60-Second Tasting Menu offers all the elegance and intricate plating of a multi-course menu — but without the time commitment (or the price). This week we visit Del Posto, a house of Italian fine dining in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood, where newly appointed executive chef Melissa J. Rodriguez serves up the eight-course “Captain’s Menu.”

Del Posto opened in 2005 as the highest-end property in Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich’s New York City restaurant empire. More than a decade of deluxe pasta plates later, original executive chef and partner Mark Ladner stepped aside earlier this year, passing the kitchen torch to Rodriguez, who started at the restaurant in 2011.

Rodriguez’s previous experience at fine-dining stalwart Daniel clashed a little with Ladner’s style when she first started at Del Posto: the more rigid and linear French cooking at the former, run by Daniel Boulud, was challenged by the looser take on Italian fine dining at the latter. Though always driven by technique, now Rodriguez says she’s “less likely to be like, ‘No, that’s not how we’re going to do this.’ I’m a little more open to looking at things from another direction, or from a different point of view.”

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