Chef Paul Liebrandt, Corton, Chef’s Recommendations, Where to eat, Where to shop, Where to drink, What to buy, Chef’s Ingredients, Salt, Restaurants, Bars, Cocktails, Bakeries, Bakery, Brooklyn, Manhattan





239 West Broadway

New York, NY 10013

T: 212.219.2777 (make a reservation)






Photo Credits: Evan Sung | Evan Sung | Melissa Hom

New York, NY

Q & A with Chef Paul Liebrandt

Q. Tell us about Corton.

A. Corton is a contemporary French restaurant and very suitable to being in Tribeca, which is a destination area. The style of the food, the design and feel of the restaurant, it’s an experience and it’s one of those places that you travel to.

Q. You food is art on a plate, where does your inspiration come from?

A. The base and the core of the food that I’ve always done is French. Just because it looks not quite the same as someone else’s, the core of it is still based on classical French technique. We still make our stocks and bases and vinaigrettes exactly the same way that I was taught when I was young boy and any other great restaurant does. That never changes. So, we don’t ever substitute anything for the basic building blocks of cooking.

The artistry part is purely my way of looking at the cuisine and the menu when putting my personal touch on it. I’m inspired by products and ingredients, but also traveling, cultures from around the world and art is a big one, modern art especially.

Cy Twombly  at The Tate 

Photo Credit: tvol [flickr]

Paul Liebrandt’s Rhubarb Dish  

Photo Credit: Evan Sung

Q. Do you have a favorite modern artist?

A. Cy Twombly -- I really love the spontaneity and the flow of his style. Rothko for more cubism. It depends on the mood, the time of year and the ingredients that we’re working with. But it’s more like a fashion house, where throughout the year we’re looking at the fall collection, the summer collection, and the style within the menu for that particular year. The aesthetic of the dishes are slightly different than they were last year, even though we are using a lot of the same ingredients.

Q. What are some of the changes you’ve seen in cooking over the years?

A. I don’t see the level of technique, the level of focus that I did maybe 15 years ago. These days everything is very easy, our lives have become very easy with technology, we expect everything immediately. I was around and working as an adult before there were cell phones. You picked up a phone, there was more interaction with people face to face, there was no texting. It wasn’t so instantaneous. You had to put more effort on a daily basis to do everything.

I think in broader terms, the way people view food and the vocational aspect of  I’m doing this as my career, I’m proud of it, I love what I do has changed. It’s not about doing this to become famous, to get somewhere else, it’s because I enjoy the craft of what I’m doing. That has definitely changed in a huge way.


Kitchen Arts & Letters | Bien Cuit  

Photographs courtesy of Kitchen Arts & Letters | Bien Cuit

Find | Bookshops

Kitchen Arts & Letters

Fantastic. Those guys are one of the last real book shops dedicated to the craft of beautiful cooking of all different kinds and they’re still going up against the Amazons and the Barnes and Nobles, but they’re one of the last independent guys that are out there. So it’s really good to go and support them.

[See details.]

Find | Bakeries

Bakery Bien Cuit

Really nice, elegant breads all based on natural fermentation.

[See details.]


La Boite A Epice Cancale Blend | Maldon Sea Salt | Murray River Salt

Chef’s Ingredients | Salt

Maldon Sea Salt

I’m British and it’s a British salt, but it really is one of my favorites.

Murray River Salt

It’s a very delicate pink, fresh salt from an estuary in Australia with salt deposits. It’s very clean with a lot of clay in it; it’s very nice.

La Boîte à Epice Cancale Blend

It’s a really lovely salt from Lior Lev Sercarz. He blends French fleur de sel with smoked orange and fennel seed. We use it as seasoning salt. It goes really well with vegetables.

Sel Violette

Violet sea salt, which is so pristine, white and clean. I just love it on on a little piece of fish.

[See details.]


Blue Ribbon Sushi | Atera  

Photographs courtesy of Blue Ribbon Sushi | Atera

Eat | Restaurants


It’s phenomenal. Matthew Lightner is awesome, like a mad great chef, technically amazing, and really solid. 

Blue Ribbon Sushi

It’s always very good, it’s open late and it’s always been a strong favorite of mine. It’s very consistent, they have great fish, the rice is good, they are always so very nice, and it’s a lovely atmosphere.

Dim Sum Go Go

I’m a man of the classics, I like the Har Gow, the shrimp dumplings.  I think that’s a good standard - if you can do a really good Har Gow then that says a lot for your technique as a chef for the rest of the dim sum. The texture of it, the thickness of it, how well it’s wrapped and how well it’s cooked.


I like to go here on a Sunday night and get any of their pasta dishes. Gabe’s [chef Gabe Thompson] a great chef. I think they make some of the best pasta in the city.

[See details.]


The Meadow | La Boite A Epice

Photo Credit: Find. Eat. Drink. | Photograph courtesy of La Boite A Epice

Chef’s Recs | New York City

Find | Spice Shops

La Boîte à Epice

Lior Lev Sercarz is amazing, he thinks in colors, in 4D, when it comes to spices, flavors, and interesting ideas of spice blends. He’s a fantastic guy and I’ve known him for years. We’ve worked together creating spice blends for Corton. He’s definitely someone that I would suggest to go see at his store.

The Meadow

It is a really cool store. They have salt and chocolate in it, simple as that! I’m always a big kid when it comes to stuff like that. I love to go into this store and see 45 different kinds of chocolate from all over the world.  It’s like a discovery for me, because it’s all boutique stuff, so it’s all very interesting, high quality, small production craftsmen who are really putting their best effort in. It’s great to see that because you don’t see that so much these days.

[See details.]


Saxon + Parole  

Photographs courtesy of Saxon + Parole

Drink | Cocktails

Experimental Cocktail Club

I like the stylistic nature of it. I like the room and the cocktails are great.

Saxon + Parole

Linden Pride’s cocktails are very creative.  They’re really well balanced and very delicious. I’m really impressed with how well thought out they are.

Weather Up

I’m not one for going to a place because it’s trendy. I’m more about the quality of the product that they serve. I’ll go into Weather Up after work every now and again. It is a nice, calming place to sit, the atmosphere is all white tiles and it’s elegant.

[See details.]

F.E.D. Recs on the Go

Download the F.E.D. iPhone app and get Paul Liebrandt’s recommendations as well as more recs from other chefs, sommeliers and bartenders.


Details of chef Paul Liebrandt’s recommendations for where to eat, drink and shop in New York City.


- Red Cabbage Puree