When the Madison Square Garden Company decided to reconstruct Madison Square Garden, they wanted the best of EVERYTHING when it when it reopened. Yesterday at the grand unveiling of MSG’s new “Signature Collection,” some of the world’s best chefs came together to showcase arena food like the city has never seen before.
“In addition to ensuring that Madison Square Garden remains THE destination for historic, unforgettable sports and entertainment for generations to come, our transformation is also designed to ensure we become a destination for some of the very best food in the city,” said Hank Ratner, president and chief executive officer, The Madison Square Garden Company. “Along with significantly enhanced menu options and upgrades for all of our food offerings, we’re proud that some of the best chefs and restaurateurs in the world will offer exclusive items as part of our Signature Collection, which will only be available to fans attending our events.”
Ratner, along with the Operating partners at MSG, had a mission: they sought out the very best chefs and restauranters in the city, people who have had a long-standing relationship with The Garden, who love the teams and the city, and who most importantly, are the best at what they do.
The list of chefs who will change the face of arena food is impressive. All have created unique offerings specifically created for MSG, which will be showcased during each event in the arena, and be available to all who attend, not just those who are in the premier seating sections, as with other venues around the country.
Jean-George Vongerichten is one of the world’s most famous chefs, his skills extend far beyond the kitchen. A savvy businessman and restaurateur, Jean-Georges is responsible for the operation and success of a constellation of three- and four-star restaurants worldwide. He operates three restaurants in New York City, Matsugen, The Mark by Jean-George, and ABC Chicken.
Vongerichten was brought in to create a unique grilled chicken delicacy, that would only be found at the newly refurbished MSG. He delivered four specialities, all which will be found at the Arena venue, “Simply Chicken.” They include the chicken hotdog, grilled chicken sandwich, sliced chicken salad, or a combination of all three in the “Simply Chicken Trio.”
The chicken hotdog will make the arena patron forget all about ordinary event weiners. Simply put, the taste of this offering is incredible and unique. Vongerichten has created taken a ordinary staple at sporting events and turned it into something magical.
Aquagrill, New York’s finest seafood restaurant and oyster bar located in SoHo in New York City, has been owned and operated by husband and wife team Jeremy and Jennifer Marshall for over 15 years. In choosing seafood as one of the cuisines for the new Madison Square Garden, the addition of Marshall has added a wonderful new flavor to the hallowed halls of MSG.
Marshall has created one of the most flavorful offerings being brought to the arena: the Lobster Shrimp Roll by Aquagrill, which will be found at the venue by the same name.
The Lobster Shrimp Roll, a combination of the two seafood on a toasted split New England roll, brings the best of New York City’s seafood to each event at the arena. The taste in one word: magnificent.
Drew Nieporent is a New York City restaurateur, who was born and raised in Manhattan and is a devout sports fan. Propieter of the Tribeca Grill, and the highly-aclaimed Nobu (along with parther Robert DeNiro), he has been a Garden patron for over 40 years, and said at the luncheon yesterday that he did not have to give the idea of preparing something special for The Garden the slightest hesitation.
“Food is one of the most important aspects of this city. To bring that experience to the arena that I love so much, one that I have attended since being very young, is an honor.”
Nieporent is about to honor New York’s patrons with a burger from heaven. The chef has created “The Daily Burger” for its namesake MSG food venue in two forms: the Daily Burger with Cheese and Bacon and Onion Jam, and the Daily Burger with Green Tomato Relish.
Honestly, those in attendance yesterday have never tasted a better hamburger–EVER.
Andrew Carmellini’s cooking is soulful and flavorful, rustic and refined. It’s a style that reflects his American roots, his work in some of New York and Italy’s best kitchens, and his travels across Europe, Asia and America. Growing up in Cleveland, Carmellini said he wanted to create something that “reminded me of the food I got at sporting events as a kid.”
“I first thought pizza, maybe wings. But then I remembered the great Italian Sausage I ate when I was young. Then it hit me.”
What Carmellini has created is amazing: a Cheese Bratwurst Weinkraut and Mustard, raised in beer, that has a taste right out of Germany but will be found exclusively at MSG this Fall. The cusiine will be found at the Sausage Boss at MSG, and will also include a Italian Link Pizzaiola, which matches the bratwurst as completely satisfying.
The Signature Collection will also include food from The Carnegie Deli and Hill Country who also sampled their new offerings at yesterday’s event. The Carnegie Deli has been a staple in New York since 1937, and Hill Country was recently named best BBQ in New York Magazine and Time Out New York, and best BBQ in the counry by the Wall Street Journal.
There will also be additional food items including Healthy Food, Gluten Free, kosher offerings featuring Carlos & Gabby’s, desserts from Magnolia Bakery, sushi and the Garden Market, which will provide a wide variety of arena favorites, including pizza and hot dogs.
Madison Square Garden has been undergoing renovation all Summer, and is set to reopen with its first event on October 22, in its MSG Theater. The MSG Signature Collection will debut in November and December.