Sure, it would have been easy for us to clone Alinea and plunk it down in Manhattan. But what does that get anyone? Sure, we make some money if it is successful, but really that is not compelling. It would mean cannibalizing the very philosophy that makes Alinea what it is. New York would have a knockoff, and it would stretch our resources here at Alinea to the point of jeopardy for no real gain to anyone.
This pleases us for a variety of reasons:
1) Mr. Achatz could charge $400 for the Tour, and people would still pack the place. It would be disgusting.
2) Could it really be that someone out there is doing it for the art and not the cash? Bless you.
3) Certain things should be unique in the universe for deeply philosophical reason, and Alinea is a prime example.
4) New York simply doesn’t deserve it. Really. It’s too good for them. And we should know.
Even if one day, forces beyond our control dictate that Mr. Achatz launch a New York project, at least today, we can savor the victory of good over evil; that’s how strongly we feel about it.
Exclusive: Achatz fills in the blanks on Alinea NYC [Time Out New York]
Alinea [Official Site]
* Note that we have virtually no emotional reaction to Charlie Trotter’s entré into the New York market. Account for that as you will.