I tried Eleven Madison Park's new plant-based menu and it proved I don't need meat to feel full. Here's what my 11-course dinner was like.

Eleven Madison Park, once named the world's best restaurant, was known for the chef's signature duck. But in May, the restaurant announced it would go meatless.

Eleven Madison Park food
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Some of the old menu items, including a chicken in the center.

Evan Sung

The Michelin-starred restaurant, which sits alongside Manhattan's Madison Square Park, used to serve lavender glazed duck, imported caviar, sea urchin, and celery root braised in pigs' bladders. But in June, chef Daniel Humm reopened Eleven Madison Park with a fully plant-based menu. 

Instead of that imported caviar, which Humm told me "isn't even rare or luxurious" anymore, the team is serving up tonburi. And clay pots of beats now rest where ducks used to hang in the back of the kitchen. 

"It became very clear to me [during the pandemic] that our idea of what luxury is had to change," Humm told The New York Times.

Dining at the establishment did and still does cost guests $335 a person (including tip and tax) before you order a drink, which can add at least $20 to your bill. 

In order to keep the feeling of luxe that Eleven Madison Park provides, Humm told me that the price had to stay the same, even though The Times reported the cost of ingredients has gone down. In addition to paying employees, each meal served at Eleven Madison Park helps provide meals to food-insecure New Yorkers, according to the restaurant.