Why they killed it in 2015: At an 18-seat horseshoe counter in Brooklyn, Ramírez-Ruiz and partner Yung are turning out some of the most exciting (and stunning) vegetable dishes in the city—maybe even in the entire country. Meat and fish aren't eschewed, but rather used cleverly to help the vegetables shine.
How would you describe your food? "Vegetable-forward tasting menu."
Favorite meal of 2015? Ramírez-Ruiz: "Gabriele Bonci [Rome's legendary pizza maker] was recently in town, and somehow we convinced him to make some pizza at Semilla. He started making the pizza at 2 p.m. and finished baking it at 1:30 a.m. I never thought pizza could be life changing. Holy shit was I wrong."
What's the most underrated ingredient, and how do you use it? Yung: "Whey. It's so versatile. It's great for fermenting, cooking, adding lactic acidity, etc." Ramírez-Ruiz: "Garlic. Sweat it, fry it, dehydrate it, confit it, pickle it, you name it. And when you are about to get sick, mix some chopped raw garlic and shoot it with some milk, and it will set you straight."
Cake or pie? Ramírez-Ruiz: "Cake all the way! No frosting though, please."Next Chef