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Everything posted by therese

  1. Ditto on Soto's space here in Atlanta being unworthy of his food. The worst was the combination of synthetic white tablecloths (in use during his formal, omakase-only period) on top of plastic tables, yielding a coefficient of friction that was so low that the entire dining experience was tinged with anxiety: the prospect of ones uni mousse sliding off the table and ending up in ones lap or on the floor was not a pleasant one. The photos above suggest that his New York location is considerably nicer.
  2. Woodfire is excellent. It's chef-owned and operated (Michael Tuohy), so the quality and type of food have been very consistent over the years.
  3. I'd probably go with Bacchanalia (where I've eaten on numerous occasions) or the newer sister restaurant, Quinones (which I've yet to try). Not just very upmarket, but very local in terms of ingredients. Restaurant Eugene also in the running. And don't discount The Dining Room at the Ritz-Carlton Buckhead---very posh, and the food is great. The chef there at the moment is a bit quiet, so it's not so much on people's radar as it's been when some other chefs have run the show, but it it's still excellent. Also lots of local product featured.
  4. I'd try narrowing it down a lot, actually. People in Atlanta don't usually use route numbers to give addresses, as they are generally assigned street names in metro areas, and the street names are a great deal more specific (as they tell you where along the route something's actually located). I'm guessing that OP is, in fact, thinking about the new Super H Mart which is located right inside the perimeter at Peachtree Industrial. Peachtree Industrial is Route 141. And yes, we're all counting the minutes. I'm not going to miss trekking all the way out to Pleasant Hill.
  5. My mother calls this dessert schaum torte and bakes two meringues (overnight method), one in a fairly deep spring form cake pan, and another as a flat circle on a cookie sheet. Once the meringue is dry she fills the first with a mixture of whipped cream and sweetened fresh fruit (usually strawberries or peaches) and then tops it with the second piece. She refrigerates it for some period of time (seems like a day), and then removes the spring form, serving the final dessert in slices as if it were a conventional layer cake. The combination of sweet, tart, dairy, crunchy, and gooey (as some of the meringe gets gooey as it sits in contact with the cream and and fruit) is really lovely.
  6. No specific place to recommend near your apartment, but I can speak to the issue of eating only one or two courses rather than that full on antipasto/primo/secondo onslaught that was once the norm in Italy. The answer is that is no longer the norm, and that many people (Italians, I mean) will order only two courses, and nobody cares the least about what order you'd like them. So you could have a soup followed by a pasta (which is technically two primi) or figs and prosciutto followed by fish (so antipasto and secondo, skipping primo entirely) or just pasta or meat with a salad (which is technically a contorno, but you could also order it at the beginning of the meal). Not infrequently restaurants feature a self-serve assortment of antipasti from which you can make a meal (and will be charged for a meal size portion, but it's not excessive). Roast vegetables, cheeses, fish. One that I particularly liked was at Ristorante S. Anna, on via di S. Anna near Campo dei Fiori (a tiny street, so locate it on the map). There's also a branch of a chain of restaurants called Insalata Ricca near Campo dei Fiori (right next to Sant'Andrea delle Valle church) that specializes in salads, offering bajillions of them. Very, very popular with the locals, and very inexpensive.
  7. I just checked my local source here in Atlanta, Dekalb Farmers Market, and sure enough it's labeled as being from New York. I haven't been using it recently and didn't buy any on this visit, so can't comment on the quality one way or the other. I've been using Wallaby yogurt lately. Very creamy texture (it does have added pectin), but not gelatinous the way a lot of U.S. yogurts tend to be. Not Fage texture, either.
  8. How very nice to see you blogging, Soba. Looks like you're putting your miniature kitchen to very good use.
  9. Better, actually, and there's a funny story involving sweetbreads and Blais to illustrate it. Blais worked for several years for a group of restaurants here in Atlanta called Concentrics. The driving force behind the group is Bob Amick, who has been big on the dining scene here in town for many, many years. Blais' main gig was at One Midtown Kitchen, but he also consulted at other restaurants in the group as they were being launched, and one of those was a very groovy restaurant called PieBar. It's since closed but opened to much fanfare, in large part because it was located in a very cool building, a bank that had been built during the '60s or '70s and looked like a flying saucer. When first launched the menu featured a lot of very inventive things (include a sort of flatbread pizza with lots of cool toppings), and clearly reflected Blais' involvement in the menu (though he was never listed, so far as I know, as chef or executive chef---others occupied those positions, at least on paper). One dish was described as "veal parmesan on a stick". It was one of the least expensive things on the menu (which was comprised of small dishes at different price points), and so although we're not big fans of the traditional dish decided to try it. Imagine our surprise when it turned out to be sweetbreads (and really delicious sweetbreads at that, prepped like veal parmesan and skewered on a bread stick). We asked the waiter what response of the diners to the dish was and he pretty much shrugged and said that people liked it. I asked if he warned people that they were eating sweetbreads and he answered no (and likely didn't know what I was talking about). Two different dining critics here in town (one professional, one not really) mistakenly described the dish as being very tender, very delicious veal. And though that's not technically wrong, most people do not lump thymus (or pancreas) and skeletal muscle in the same category. The dish and just about everything else that was any good was gradually edited from the menu and it eventually closed.
  10. Even the south rim isn't really a problem crowd-wise. I am similarly crowd-averse and had no trouble getting away entirely and still enjoying the canyon. As mentioned upthread, very few people walk more than 20 meters away from where they're dropped, so if you walk another 10 meters you're essentially alone.
  11. And am I the only one who finds this a really, really horrendous name for a restaurant? Will I be expected to slaughter and butcher my own meat? Will the process be part of the dinner's entertainment? Are the guests potentially subject to similar treatment? Maybe there aren't that many people who would have such a visceral (pun intended) reaction to this name. It's French, and maybe that's good enough.
  12. Went Saturday night with my husband and another couple. Dining room hopping, service on the mark, dinner paced well. Food overall very good, with rather less whizz bang than Blais sometimes delivers, but then the genre is southern food and southern food has enough built-in whizz bang to keep most people happy. I'm generally dismayed when southern food is "gussied up", but was altogether pleased with Blais' take on it. Price point very good by Atlanta standards. Repeat visit by proxy this coming weekend, as my son and his party of 8 are dining there before prom. No tasting menu option yet available, but that may well happen down the road. At which point some of you might be looking into inexpensive flights to the ATL, Feel free to PM for advice re hotels, tranportation, etc.
  13. Be sure to have somebody at hand to document the expression on your face when you do this. You can then re-live the experience without having to repeat it.
  14. Wine rack very cool---I need to look into something like that. Lots of ziploc bags.
  15. Those photos are on buttons attached to the scale; you plunk down your bananas, hit the button with the photo of bananas, and bingo: the machine weighs the item and spits out a price tag for it. Unless, like me, you buy some obscure thing, can't find the picture or the number for it, and then you hold up everyone else in line. Or even if it isn't that obscure an item the picture looks a lot like something else. Stone fruits can be particularly difficult to distinguish. Sometimes the picture just doesn't look much like that actual item (figs in Salamanca were problematic---I managed by running the various written possibilities through my linguistic rolodex), and sometimes there's no picture, just the name. If I'm not feeling up to the task I just buy pre-packaged stuff with the weight already posted.
  16. How very cool to see you blogging. Those of you who haven't checked it out should visit Rehovot's usual blog, Smetana's Glasses. There's a link in her sig line, I believe.
  17. Benedictine, of course. Not the sort that you drink, the other kind.
  18. I wouldn't worry too much, petit cochon, as all of the really bad food that I ate was in the context of the conference, arranged by somebody else and served at either a hotel banquet or the conference center. All of the meals that I had any say in choosing were actually pretty good, so just trust your instincts and you'll be fine. I no longer recall the names of any of the restaurants that I did like, but Glyfada is a small place and you'll likely find some decent places. And the weather should be lovely as well.
  19. Loving this blog. The handwashing unit as part of the toilet is very cool, and the lack of a similar set-up or sink in water closets in French households has always been one of those things that really bugs me. There's a type of dish drainer that you might want to consider: wall-mounted, directly above your sink. They're common in Italian kitchens, where they're typically hidden behind a cupboard, though of course that's not necessary. You could build one yourself, making shelfs of plastic-coated wire or something similar, suspending them from the bottom of the cupboard that's over the sink. That way you wouldn't have to move it to take advantage of your counter space.
  20. Exactly the same rules apply here. The only time I serve the wine that's brought to a dinner party is if I've specified that the gathering is BYOB (bring your own bottle) or if I've specifically asked (in response to a direct query) for something like "champagne to go with dessert". And even if I'd brought a bottle to a BYOB event and it ended up not being opened I'd certainly not take it home at the end of the evening. We had a dinner party on Saturday for three other couples. One brought wine, one brought a jar of mustard (from his home town in the south of France), and one brought a pretty glass bowl. We didn't use or serve any of these items in the course of the evening.
  21. therese

    Poached haddock roe

    Nope but i've eaten squid roe plenty of times, do they have the same waxy texture, look colourless and little transparent? ← They were in a sauce, so difficult to say. Difficult even to describe them, as the menu described the dish as including granchio (crab) and so I found myself wondering whether a particular piece of something was actually crab or actually cuttlefish roe. Just about the time I'd decided that something was crab I'd realize that it didn't really taste like crab, and that it must be roe. It was white, and the texture best described as somewhere between mollusk and crustacean. I did ask the waiter for some help, but he was clueless (though he did want to know what I thought so that he could advise others). I didn't go so far as to carry my query to the kitchen. The meal was lunch, eaten outside in Trastevere just opposite a museum that give the history of the area. I'll see if I can figure out the name.
  22. The first thing I cooked in my new kitchen was Christmas Dinner. A lovely start.
  23. therese

    Poached haddock roe

    Shad roe is another one that's eaten cooked, the entire egg sack intact. Common in the southeast U.S. (and elsewhere, I presume). I like all sorts of roe products: mentaiko, bottarga (Italian, dried and shaved), tarama (Greek, used to make taramasalata). There's a really nice white roe that I can sometimes get in local sushi restaurants---the source escapes me at the moment. Weirdest roe product that I've had recently was uova di seppie (cuttlefish roe) while in Rome last month. Anybody else had this?
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