Dancing with Roosevelt – 2/25/24

The Roosevelt Room, Troy, NY
Article by Ilona Weisman, Vice Chargée de Presse
Photos by William Harris, Bailli

What do two dead U.S. Presidents, an impromptu late night dance spot, and the fertile imagination of Chef Noah Frese have in common? The Roosevelt Room, a splashy new restaurant in North Greenbush, New York just a hop from Albany proper where Chaîne members reveled in the chapter’s latest evening to remember. Yes, Teddy the Roughrider and fifth cousin Franklin Delano were a dynasty.  Apart from their time in the White House, each served as Governor of New York, Secretary of the Navy and  as members of the New York legislature. Owner Mike Moscatiello named the restaurant for the Roosevelt Room in the White House, which sits importantly across from The Oval Office and plays host to high level meetings and visiting dignitaries. 

Indeed the namesake eatery afforded Chaîne members royal treatment that day starting with a Dopff & Irion Cremant D’Alsace Brut Rosé plus a bartender’s special cocktail du jour—Earl Grey Gin Fizz. The drinks were accompanied by whimsical small bites of octopus seviche, Medjool dates stuffed with bleu cheese cream, and wasabi deviled eggs. It was a harbinger of what awaited tableside. A hint of char lingered over an amuse-gueule; circles of cross-cut langoustine, scallion ash and hot crispy oil paired with palate-cooling Jakob Schneider ‘Niederhauser Hermannshöhle’ Riesling Trocken 2020. Next fish up was Chilean sea bass with celery root miso purée, a smokey duo complemented by orchard flavors in the always elegant Alexandre Monmouseau Vouvray ‘Clos Le Vigneau’ 2019.  Beef tongue surrounded by bone marrow jus and salsify purée was topped with fennel chutney and graced by Louis Jadot’s Willamette Valley ‘Resonance’ Pinot Noir 2019. A course of lamb tartare was mixed with quail egg and crystallized golden raisins, punctuated by dukkah, mint granita and pistachio dust, its pillowy texture contrasted by the dark and savory  Ridge ‘Lytton Springs’ Zinfandel 2016.    

An intermezzo of Sea Buckthorn sorbet was bracing, but even more adventure was yet to come.  Kangaroo Wellington surrounded by luxurious porcini foie gras duxelles was deconstructed with a St. Louis Gateway arch of pastry circling above a rectangle of marsupial, a happy pairing with Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2014 drinking in its prime. Dinner reached its end with a creation also Australian in origin—the delicate meringue of pavlova, this one stuffed with diced persimmon and black sesame namelaka, accompanied by labneh ice cream and served with a glass of Savory & James Deluxe Quality Sherry Cream.

As members slowly left for home, Service Director Javier Rodriguez dimmed the dining room lights and turned up the music. Owner Moscatiello admits Javier does it all the time, spiriting the last diners of the day to the dance floor.  On this night he managed it again—the evening ended with a few stragglers dancing around The Roosevelt Room.

Notes on the Cast

Congratulations to Michael Barnas who received the Bronze Star of Excellence that evening. Bailli William Harris presented the award to Chevalier Barnas for his work rewriting the national Chaîne bylaws.

Maître Rôtisseur A. J. Richards, chef and owner of [farmacy] restobar in Glens Falls, Chevalier Severn Goodwin, and Vice Echanson Provincial Hon. Joel Hodes provided insightful commentary on the wines served with dinner.

Noah Frese, Executive Chef of the Roosevelt Room, will become a member of the Albany chapter at its April 28th Induction Dinner. Chef Frese’s resume includes  two Capital Region fine dining favorites, 677 Prime in Albany and 15 Church in Saratoga Springs, as well as Café Boulud in Manhattan.