“We’ve changed everything,” says Willis Loughhead, the new chef at Country. Working closely with Geoffry Zakarian, Loughhead is implementing a sprightly, Haute Barnyard–ish menu that should help to rejuvenate the restaurant’s somewhat stodgy reputation. “My style is characterized by a lot of olive oil, vinegar, fresh lemon — a lot of brightness.” The new menu, rolling out this week, will include a soft-shell crab with pea greens, pea shoots, and pea tendrils and a pistachio-yuzu vinaigrette; a seared bison tenderloin with white and green asparagus and purple baby artichokes; and a full-bone, dry-aged Nebraska prime rib for two. “We’re doing everything differently now,” Loughhead says. “We’re breaking down whole animals, making our own charcuterie.… And now that the Greenmarket is about to explode, you’re going to see so much from us based on that. It’s going to be very market-driven. Right now, I’m waiting for ramps, for instance. Just wait till they come in.” We’ll settle for the crabs and steak.
Loughhead: the new baron of Barnyard.