On the Line

On the Line : How One Great Restaurant Made it to the Top and Stayed There

4.04 (324 ratings by Goodreads)
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"On The Line" is an exciting tale of how a restaurant stays on top for over 25 years - the hard work and fierce discipline, the checklists and systems, the precarious balance between order and chaos, the joy of making irresistible food. We meet everyone at le Bernardin from the chef de cuisine and "sauce whisperer" to a sous chef working the saute station and find out exactly what they do (sometimes down to the minute). Most diners are unaware of what goes on behind those swinging kitchen doors and Eric Ripert gives an insider's look at how excellence in food and service is maintained and made memorable.Curious foodies and diners will find answers to all their restaurant questions: What, and where, is the 'line' or 'pass'? How does one tiny pastry kitchen yield over 500 desserts, 1,500 cookies, and 1,250 petit-fours a day? How much does it really cost to make decadent dishes like Baked Lobster with Wilted Romaine, Squash, and Candied Ginger (GBP 13.97), or organically grown farm raised Osetra caviar (GBP 20.90) - and that doesn't even include labour!
After peeking inside every pantry, walk-in, and drawer in the office, readers will be amazed at the miracle that is a four star dining. Informative, illuminating, and a wee bit gossipy, "On The Line" brims with fascinating facts, bold personalities, and all the pleasure of a delicious three-course meal.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 240 pages
  • 218 x 246 x 27mm | 1,156g
  • Artisan Division of Workman Publishing
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 150 colour & black & white photographs
  • 1579653693
  • 9781579653699
  • 510,065

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In New York, a mecca of fine dining, Le Bernardin is consistently at the top. "On the Line" is a riveting look at the inner workings of this world-class restaurant: the level of personal commitment; the fierce discipline and loyalty; the perfect organization and orchestration; the hiring and training; the real cost of food; the breakneck speed at which exquisite meals are prepared; the planning and problems of growing a business; and much more.
The facts and figures are all here: the pounds of black sea bass served every week (500); the average number of minutes to cook a dish (5); the glasses washed by hand each day (1300); the bottles of wine in the cellar (14,000); the monthly flower bill ($12,000); the number of waitstaff who are actors (0).
Told from the point of view of the principal players chefs to line cooks, porter to maitre d, sommelier to captain the story lets you feel the heat, the creativity, the sense of accomplishment as 150,000 plates of culinary perfection are sent from the kitchen each year. The bonus is nearly fifty of Eric Ripert s favorite dishes, described from inspiration to execution, with such recipes as Striped Bass with Sweet Corn Puree and Grilled Shishito Peppers, Shaved Smoked Bonito, and Mole Sauce; Wild Alaskan and Smoked Salmon with Apple, Celery, and Baby Watercress and Jalapeno Emulsion; and Pan-Roasted Cod with Sauteed Baby Artichokes in Sage-and-Garlic Broth.
Anyone who loves food and wants to be witness to the life and drama of one of the world s greatest restaurants will find "On the Line" a delicious read. Aspiring chefs will get an invaluable education, while seasoned food professionals will be refreshed and inspired. This beautiful and totally engaging book reveals what it takes to succeed in the high-heat world of haute cuisine.
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Review quote

"Starred Review: " "A behind-the-scenes look at the famed New York restaurant Le Bernardin, this stunning and informative book takes readers into the inner sanctum, where they view firsthand the blend of science and artistry that makes this Michelin three-star eatery legendary. Chef Ripert and "New York Times" writer Muhlke recount the restaurant's history, from its founding in 1986 by Gilbert and Maguy Le Coze, through Ripert's joining the team in 1991, to the present day. This thorough guide to how the restaurant operates teaches about various kitchen stations, tools of the trade, key personnel and their duties, how new dishes are born and what it's like to spend a night "on the line." Great attention is also paid to the diner's experience, evidenced by the restaurant's "129 Cardinal Sins" (from chipped glassware to servers without a sense of humor). Recipes include ultrarare charred sea scallops with smoked sea salt; pan-roasted monkfish with truffled potato foam and red wine-brandy sauce; and wild Alaskan salmon, morels and spring vegetables in a wild mushroom pot-au-feu. A huge treat for industry insiders, fans of Le Bernardin and foodies everywhere, this book is a must-have for anyone with a passion for food." (Dec.) - "Publishers Weekly"
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Rating details

324 ratings
4.04 out of 5 stars
5 36% (117)
4 38% (124)
3 20% (65)
2 5% (16)
1 1% (2)
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