When Elizabeth restaurant opened last September, it offered three fixed-price menus of ten to 20-odd courses, served at communal tables. Chef Iliana Regan had done something similar at an underground restaurant she’d run in her apartment for two years, except that instead of three tables of eight people she’d had one table that seated up to 12 (she served up to 25 courses there).

I interviewed Regan several times before Elizabeth opened for a feature story I was writing about her, and she told me then that some people had expressed concern that she was taking on too much by offering three menus with very little overlap between them. Her response was, “Believe me, I’m not. I think a lot of people think it’s too ambitious, but a lot of people in the industry couldn’t comprehend that I was doing what I was doing in my house.”