Hot off its induction into the Chron four-star club, Saison is introducing a new way for diners to enjoy a meal. Beginning on August 2nd, chef Joshua Skenes will hold Saison Test Kitchen dinners each Saturday night, inviting a group of up to eight diners into his private experimental kitchen for "the sharing of new ideas, experimentation, and discussion," with all of the cooking done by Skenes himself. (Executive sous chef and Eater Young Gun Mitch Lienhard will run the restaurant's main kitchen downstairs.)
The cost of the menu is $498, which includes beverage pairings; that's only $2 more expensive than Saison's regular tasting ($248) with beverage pairings (an additional $248), and less expensive than the $646 "discovery menu" with pairings that's ordered by approximately 30-40% of the restaurant's guests. So if you can afford Saison and want to have its mastermind personally cook for you, it's a good deal; Skenes will even join guests for a glass of wine after dinner. Reservations are accepted up to two months in advance.
The Test Kitchen dinners will also feature wines hand-selected and poured by sommelier Mark Bright, who's definitely a busy guy these days as he also works to open a casual wine bar-cafe, Les Clos, down the street by the end of summer. As if that wasn't enough, he and Skenes are hosting a special wine dinner on Tuesday, July 15, featuring his mentor and longtime Mina Group sommelier Rajat Parr. The duo will pour wines from Parr's own lines, Sandhi and Domaine de la Cote; dinner, including pairings, is roughly the same as a normal meal with pairings, at $495.
· Saison Joins the Chron's Four-Star Pantheon [~ ESF ~]
· The Road to the 38: Saison [~ ESF ~]
· Compare Saison's Prices with Eater's Interactive Tool [~ EN ~]