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eG Foodblog: HhLodesign - On Food and Architecture

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#211 H. du Bois

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 02:07 PM

Henry,

I love, love, love this blog. You have a passion and enthusiasm for life that shines through in all your interests - be they food, friendship, or architecture. It's been a true adventure reading this. I cannot wait to see Seattle and experience myself the world you've introduced me to.

#212 hhlodesign

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 03:01 PM

The Last Dinner!

The story (as I know it) is that a Microsoft exec was dining at the sushi bar at Matsuhisa in LA. Tatsu Nishino was his sushi chef. He enjoyed his meal so much, that he made Tatsu an offer he couldn't refuse, " Come to Seattle and I'll back you in a restaurant venture." The rest, as they say, is history.

We were doing the "exclusive omakase" tonight. "A two hour dining experience offering the best of what Nishino has to offer," our server told us. Aaron and Stacy were joining us as well, They were getting the vegetarian exclusive omakase as well. I was curious to see what they could do with multiple vegetarian courses.

Our first course came right away.
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It was kind of a sampler platter of amuses. Monkfish liver on a cucumber slice, ameabi with wasabi aioli and tomato, sockeye salmon with shiso, escolar with avocado, and hamachi with jalapeno. My favorite were the monkfish liver and Hammachi avocado. great texture combinations on the liver. I've never had raw fish with jalapeno. They go great together!

Veg.
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Grilled mountain potato, spinach with sesame seeds, seaweed and sweet miso.

2. Kampachi with ponzu and (I think) shredded daikon.
I forgot to take a picture of this one. Sorry!
The Kampachi was sliced super thin, 4 slices per dish. Each slice had a splash of ponzu and a small hill of daikon. Very refreshing.

Veg.
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Tofu, avocado, and yuzu sauce.

3. Seared tuna with foie gras, shitakes and red wine reduction.
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This was my favorite course! You'd think that the foie would overpower the taste of the tuna, but it didn't. They used such a small peice of foie, they flavors were perfectly balanced. I'm gonna try and make this at home!

Veg.
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Mushroom asparagus salad with yuzu dressing.

4. Albacore salad with fried lotus root and red onion soy dressing
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Another light, refreshing dish. This is what I love about Japanese food. You never feel like you're eating too much. Even when you are!

Veg.
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Baby Bok Choy with ginger garlic dressing.

5. Ginger crab cakes with pineapple relish and napa cabbage slaw.
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This was probabely the least extraordinary dish. Everyone has crab cakes on the menu in Seattle. These were as good as some of the best, but nothing exceptional. I think I'm just bored with crab cakes.

Veg.
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Grilled Mytake mushrooms with seven pepper salad.

6. Tempura. Oyster, Shiso leaf, and Mytake mushroom
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That shiso leaf was amazing. thinness of the leaf gave it a gret crunchiness, like a potato chip.

Veg.
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Broiled eggplant with sweet miso sauce, lotus root, and pickled bean sprouts.

7. Curried halibut cheeks with swiss chard and cilantro aioli.
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this is one of my favorite dishes on the regular menu. I think Tatsu remembered this fact and sent this out as our main course. Nothing like the weak imitation I attempted on tuesday.

Veg.
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Kinoko mushroom with kinoko tofu, kinoko seaweed broth, kombu seaweed and mushrooms.

8. Sushi
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Spanish Mackerel, Otoro (fatty tuna), Anago (Sea eel), and Madison Park Roll (crab, shrimp, salmon, wrapped in an egg crepe)
The spanish mackerel was my favorite. It had just a touch of raw ginger on it. Nice flavor combo.
The otoro was amazing. Needless to say, all the fish was as fresh as can be. I didn't care for the roll. To many flavors and none were distinct.

Veg.
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Broccoli, Sprouts with ume paste, grilled asparagus, and cucumber rolls.
I tried a roll. eh.

Dessert. tempura banana.
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This is one of my favorite desserts in Seattle. Its all about contrast, both in texture and tempurature. The Ice cream is cold and soft, while the banana is crispy and hot. They intermingle in your mouth to create a perfect pairing.

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Rasberry, mango, and shiso sorbet. The shiso was so subtle yet distinctive. Very original.

We closed the place down.
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I was exhausted, but the night would roll on!

The guys at Mistral wanted to celebrate the last night of my blog (amongst other things). I met them just as they were finishing up dinner service. around midnight. We went striaght to Marjorei for some Champagne.
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The guys in the kitchen whipped us up some pizzas.
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Phil
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Todd
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Pizza and Champagne, a perfect combination.

We ended the night (and started the morning) back at Mistral.
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things got a little crazy.
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including a 4am phone call to NY (7am) to a chef who shall remain anonymous.

I got to bed around 5:30am.

Next week I rest!

Edited by hhlodesign, 26 March 2006 - 03:16 PM.


#213 a2k

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 03:10 PM

I can't believe you went out for pizza after the omakase! You take glutony to a whole new level.

The mushroom asparagus salad was the favorite of the veggie courses.

#214 hhlodesign

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 03:14 PM

Thanks to everyone who has commented and made this experience such a pleasure!

As fun as this week was for me, it will be a pleasure to get back to eating normally again. I think I've had more tasting menus in this past week, than in the last 6 months. One cannot feast everyday, but one can sure try! It's going to be lots of fruits and salads for me next week.

Note: I did not step on a scale all week (on purpose.) I just weighed myself and was surprised to learn that I only gained 2 pounds! gotta keep up the nightly runinig regimen.

In reading through my own blog, I've come to realize that food, for me, seems to be more about the total experience, than the food itself. All of my most memorable food moments revolve around not only great food but great company and settings as well.

One of them doesn't even involve eating. It was walking around Florence at night with the girl of my dreams (at the time.) The chrismas lights were all over the streets, and the smell of steet vendors roasting chestnuts filled the air. The girl may be gone, but I'll always remember that smell of chestnuts!

I think its so important in my life to be surrounded with a great family and wonderful friends to share my food experiences with.

Thanks for listening!

#215 hhlodesign

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 03:17 PM

I can't believe you went out for pizza after the omakase! You take glutony to a whole new level.

The mushroom asparagus salad was the favorite of the veggie courses.

View Post


I ate none!

Well..I took a bite of one slice.

#216 Pan

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 03:39 PM

[...]things got a little crazy.
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:laugh: Has she seen the photo yet?

including a 4am phone call to NY (7am) to a chef who shall remain anonymous.[...]

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Was s/he mentioned somewhere in this blog? :wink:

Enjoy your rest!

#217 rjwong

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 03:47 PM

I can't believe you went out for pizza after the omakase! You take glutony to a whole new level.

The mushroom asparagus salad was the favorite of the veggie courses.

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I ate none!

Well..I took a bite of one slice.

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Yeah. Right.

[Bart Simpson]Ididn'tdoit.Youdidn'tseemedoit.Youcan'tblameme.[/Bart Simpson]

Henry, definitely Sweet Sixteen, maybe Elite Eight. Your blog, that is. :biggrin:

Thank you for sharing your life, introducing us to your friends and revealing your passions for architecture & food!!
Russell J. Wong aka "rjwong"

Food and I, we go way back ...

#218 Rebecca263

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 04:16 PM

I don't know how you managed to eat so much this week, dear, but I'm grateful to you for taking a week for the team here on eGullet! Now, whenever I see your posts, I'll have a face and the feeling of your personality to put to your name, and I'm glad to have the chance to follow you and learn a bit about your life, aside from the amazing meals! Thank you. My wish for you is that you'll have many, many more wonderful "chestnuts filling the air" (to paraphrase) moments ahead.
More Than Salt
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#219 skye

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 05:02 PM

Laughing uncontrollably!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mistral: putting the jagermeister back in fine dining!!!!

those are my boys.

Why didn't we blog Walla Walla? Gerald, you've got some explaining to do!!
don't get me wet
or else the bandages will all come off

#220 Kouign Aman

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 05:28 PM

I'm vicariously exhilarated, exhausted and over-fed. Muchfun! You done super good, sir. Thank you very much for this blog.
"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

#221 Safran

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 05:50 PM

I think I gained that weight for you!!! :raz:

Wonderful, wonderful, fun blog! Thank you so very very much Henry!

#222 Ling

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 05:55 PM

Monkfish liver, otoro, and mountain potato are some of my favourites as well! Thank you SO much for those pictures!

And thank-you also for giving us a glimpse of your (very enviable) life this week.

I scored reservations last night at The French Laundry and I'm most likely going to take the Greyhound first to Seattle before my flight sometime in the next two weeks. It looks like Salumi or Monsoon is in my near future after all! :wub:

#223 hhlodesign

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 07:44 PM

[...]things got a little crazy.
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:laugh: Has she seen the photo yet?

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I think she's still in the same position. :laugh:

Edited by hhlodesign, 26 March 2006 - 08:09 PM.


#224 hhlodesign

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 07:46 PM

Henry, definitely Sweet Sixteen, maybe Elite Eight. Your blog, that is.  :biggrin:

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I was hoping for at least Final Four! :wink:

#225 hhlodesign

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 07:52 PM

Monkfish liver, otoro, and mountain potato are some of my favourites as well! Thank you SO much for those pictures!

And thank-you also for giving us a glimpse of your (very enviable) life this week.

I scored reservations last night at The French Laundry and I'm most likely going to take the Greyhound first to Seattle before my flight sometime in the next two weeks. It looks like Salumi or Monsoon is in my near future after all!  :wub:

View Post


The Laundry! Wow! Let me know if you need a date! :wink:

#226 MarketStEl

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 09:56 PM

All of a sudden I feel so...inadequate.

You, sir, are truly awesome. This has been quite an edifice you've built--and edifying to boot.

I do have an off-the-wall question here at the end, but I figure that since you live in one of those high-tech paradises, you'd have occasion to contemplate this:

Does the use of the word "architect" as a verb (the way software and computer systems engineers seem to do) grate on you as much as it does on me?
Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia
"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen
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