Torino is making big changes, adding more courses to the menu and debuting a brand new website as well for June. The previous five course menu (seven counting the amuse bouche bite at the beginning of the meal and the sweet mignardises at the end) is now a full nine courses starting tomorrow.
The one-bite amuse has been replaced by a full first course, the mignardises remain at the end, but two additional courses have been added to the meal, ensuring that nobody will ever say they left hungry again. Chef Garrett Lipar's menu will be served throughout the month, changing to reflect available seasonal, local, and exotic ingredients as the year progresses.
Diners should also expect some strange new local ingredients moving forward, as the restaurant is now working with a professional Michigan forager to source wild local plants and fungi. Many of the ingredients appearing on the menu are not widely used, meaning diners will likely be eating something completely new at least once during the meal (reindeer lichen and spruce tips anyone?). Torino is also working with a local farmer who raises organic Mangalitsa pigs, so expect some unusual pork features on the menu moving forward.
One thing that remains is that the food is playful. In June guests are encouraged to slurp, smear, mix, and even go without utensils in the course of the meal. However, another thing that has changed is the price, as dinner is now $89 per person (originally $59). Cocktails and wine pairings add an additional cost to the meal, so ask Beverage Director Ian Redmond about pricing ahead of time.
Have plans to grab a quick bite before a show? Make a reservation for another night instead. Owner Noah Dorfman says that the experience should take between two and a half to three hours total, depending on the diners, so expect the meal to be the evening's main event. Reservations are an excellent idea, and should be made well in advance, since Torino only has nine tables (and people will be staying put throughout the evening with the new format). Still nervous? Check out the new website for pictures of a few of this month's dishes, and a menu listing the key ingredients of each course.
· Torino Ferndale [Official Site]
· Torino adds more courses, exotic ingredients to weekly tasting-menu format [Freep]
· Torino's Garrett Lipar: Eater Young Guns Semi-Finalist 10 Things to Know [-ED-]