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Everything posted by Boris_A

  1. The Electrolux is a very nice appliance, especially suited for small kitchens. The Gaggenau appliances have direct water in - and outlet. Unique with household appliances, AFAIK. The Eloma Compact is a compact (household appliance size, 6 x GN 2/3), professional combioven with according features and, ahem, price (~$8000).
  2. "Risotto al salto" at Savini Milano in the splendid Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is one of the most classic after-opera meals you can have.
  3. Recently, there was a television report about pizza, about the best pizzaioli from Naples and how they showed a lot of respect for Japanese pizzaioli. In Genova, there's a competition about pesto making every year, and in 2008, the winner was a Japanese guy, as far as I remember. I think for traditional food, the public, its knowledge about their local food and the resulting competition among the cooks is a more decisive factor than the cooks themselves. It's not that it's not possible to make good pizza even if your are not from the Vesuvian hillsides. It's more the lack of competition that makes exported traditional food somtimes, um, adventurous and great quality a random find. Of course, when it comes to hard to find or hard to transport ingredients, everything changes in this picture.
  4. Who told you that? Alberto Adria (linked above): "But pizza, Alberto Adrià said, is another thing. "Ferran likes it too much. So we asked ourselves: 'Why can't we have a decent one in Barcelona? We should be the one to try.' " But I think you are right: there must be decent pizza in Barcelona already. It's not that difficult. OTOH: learning about pizza in Turin is a bit like travelling to Salamanca to learn about a good paella. You can do that, but what's the point? Anyway, one can find an extremely detailed description and recipe for "Real Pizza Napoletana" (Marinara or Margherita) on the net: Vera Pizza Napoletana. This should already help every talented cook to make a decent pizza. Of course, the right flour and oven equipment is crucial to consistently make great pizza.
  5. There's a DVD about three starred L'Ambroisie and chef Paccot. There he tells about he was doing a risotto until he crossed the street and had risotto in the restaurant of an Italian neighbour chef. From that moment on, he tells, he never did risotto again. I don't doubt he could do it perfectly - but why bother? Paccots strength are somewhere else. So sticking with you circle of competence is not the least thing you can do. And preparing dishes which nobody ever tasted before can technically be easier - but of course much, much more challenging from the creative side - than doing dishes which have been aorund for a hundred years or more and where customers are terribly competent about the stuff they are eating. I don't doubt that the Adrias can do pizza very well, and I think it's great if they stick to authentic pizzas and bring this globally most succesful fast food to Barcelona, where obviously a good pizzeria doesn't exist. How else can they feel challenged to start such a venture about one of the world's most classical food?
  6. Also, elegant, mild flavour, texture and 'sweetness' of top quality Parma ham or San Daniele ham is something I never found outside of Italy. It's completely different from Iberico, but 'inferior'? It's something like saying "Napa cabernet is superior to Burgundy pinot noir".
  7. Read from the sign, it's clear that your Heurigen ist situated in "Grinzingerstrasse" (or "Grinzingerstr.", abbreviated) or in "Grinzinger Allee". You might search with these terms and "Heurigen" and "Heurigenrestaurant" on google.at.
  8. Unfortunately, you are right. No, the name under the signage is "Römerquelle", a mineral water brand. All I can guess is that it's situated on Grinzinger street. But as mentioned, there are many, many. But times have changed anyway, and most Heurigen in Grinzing are simply tourist attractions nowadays. Some of the nicest Heurigens - run by private people, mostly wine farmers, opened only two or three times a year for two weeks and visited by the local people - you'll find in the small villages east of airport Schwechat, way out of town. Of course, there still exist some very nice Heurigen in town. You might consult this guide: Ausgsteckt is': der Wiener Heurigenführer
  9. For chocolate, you shouldn't miss Kolonialwaren Schwarzenbach since 1864. Not a chocolatier, though but selling an wonderful selection of artisanal brands. Unique: the shop sells also Felchlin Couverture chips. This is the raw chocolate bought by some of the world's best chocolatiers. Schwarzenbach also roasts coffee almost daily (right in the shop), an his pure Mocca is phantastic. As a side note: walk 20 meters further and you'll find Bodega Espanola with quite preserved interior from around 1900 and mostly spanish waiters. Little Spain in Zürich to enjoy an afternoon beer and some tapas. Famous, of course:Teuscher, but you don't necessarily need to visit Zürich for this one. For pastry, I prefer Honold over Spüngeli. A personal preference, though. I strongly second the "Truffe du jour" at Sprüngli recommendation (above). Probably the best pralinès I ever had. They should be consumed the same day.
  10. Precisely! http://www.speising.net/essen/detail/schnattl_wien/
  11. I think it was me who recommended ZSK or Pontoni. They are are more about "Beisl"-atmosphere than about food (which is absolutely not bad at all within their circle of competence). For a "one night stand" in Vienna like yours, I continue to recommend "Schnattl" for very well made, modern but non-international and clearly traditional-Austrian influenced food. And yes, don't miss Bräunerhof! Good luck!
  12. We spent this new year's eve in Genova. We liked the atmosphere and the traditional food of "Antica Corona di Ferro" (just below Via Garibaldi), a beautyful trattoria since a.D. 1790. We liked the wonderful food of "Antica Osteria di Vico Palla" very much (tupac was also there, btw). For more elegant, but rather expensive dining, we liked "Zeffirino". If you stick with "insalata di frutta die mare" and to some "pasta al pesto", the bill will be still ok. Service is great, and it offers "Ristorante elegante" with an interior in the style of the 60ies. At least at that time of the year, reservation was mandatory for all three places (crowded). The old town and the "Le Strade Nuove" quarter is stuffed with truly impressive "palazzi". As for accomodation, we liked the Bristol, **** and very central. They can offer great prices. We spent € 110, but the room was offcially at €390, so watch out. I think it's what they charge during the boat show an other big events. Enjoy your trip and report back!
  13. As long as you stay with technically simple, "ingredient driven" dishes (insalata caprese or calamari fritti, for example, or classical dishes like the parmigiana and go to the popular trattorias (the ones that are crowded with local people on saturday evening) , the quality level is often very hard to surpass, I found. The bendy road along the coast from Camerota to Agropoli is time consuming but truly spectacular, BTW.
  14. For classical trattoria food, try Ristorante Costantinopoli Di Marino Daniela Via Costantinopoli, 84068 Pollica Unusual and very interesting is Al Frantoio with some ancient Cilentano dishes. Good luck!
  15. Some weeks ago, I visited my brother currently living in Parma, Italy. He found an out of print cookbook (1960?) about the old, traditional "cucina parmigiana", and there was a very small section (one page) about "gatto". Older cook books were mentioned, where recipes referred to "a small animal, intelligent, living togehter with men". Obviously, these older books didn't mention explicitly "cat", but no doubt it was about these. The socially acceptable notion to communicate about cooked cats seemed to be "lepre di tetto" aka "roof hare". Shall I dig deeper, i.e. trying come up with references?
  16. I had the same problem with mine, but I was able to move the sensor (or sensor construction, that is) 2-3 milimeters closer to the flame. Shut down threshold came down to an acceptable 2-3 seconds, and I have still all the safety of the "no flame, no gas" thermocoupled valves. ← I didn't get anywhere with this. I can unscrew the sensors but I can't get them closer unless I redrill the hole.. Is that what you did Boris? ← I see, I see. Mine has a kind of a socket for the sensor, and the socket can be adjusted a bit. Yours is a pin coming out of the stainless coverage, right? An adjustment is impossible, obviously. Well then - how about installing a small "reflecting shield" behind the sensor in order to concentrate the heat?? Maybe you can experiment with a piece of alu foil. Of course, if the ("intelligent", engineers say, haha) sensor has a certain time dealy, all this is in vain. Anyway, looking forward to a cold, foggy december day in Zanco when we both are supposed to do some really clever things with your sensor.
  17. I had the same problem with mine, but I was able to move the sensor (or sensor construction, that is) 2-3 milimeters closer to the flame. Shut down threshold came down to an acceptable 2-3 seconds, and I have still all the safety of the "no flame, no gas" thermocoupled valves.
  18. For Sushi, try Kojiro 100 meters from the Karlsplatz, at the border of the Naschmarkt. Japanese businesses order there takeout sushi for evening events, do I need to say more? Incredibly small, exclusively Japanese crew, everything made to order. Top quality under humble appearance. Closes at 5:30 pm! Brunnenmarkt best on saturday morning, when combined with farmers market at "Hyppenplatz" (top end of Brunnengasse). Don't miss "Staud's" shop there at Hyppenplatz, for marmelades etc. and a freshly pressed vegetable juice. When sopping at Staud's, look for apricot marmelade: they offer it from different "vineyards". Amazing differences in flavour. Also there (50 m) in the Brunnengasse: "Kent", one of the best Turkish restaurants in Vienna. Add some typical Wiener "Beisl" (inn): "Zur Stadt Krems", 7th district (a living monument, will be really appreciated when it's gone) or "Pontoni". Simple austrian-bohemian dishes, but well prepared. That's where Vienna dining atmosphere is unique. Good Viennese restaurants, but not internationally oriented: "Schnattl", "Zum Schwarzen Adler". Have a nice time.
  19. Well, evidently without a relatively precise thermometer, you can forget it. Rocas book calls for very short cooking time for fish an tender meat (10 min - 20 min, initial temp of food @ 18 deg C). With a large pot of water (2-3 gal) heated to the correct temperature and a bit of monitoring with the thermometer and reheating once or twice for 30 seconds or so, you should be able to stay within a reasonable margin to what a lab water bath can do.
  20. Fun test? Not at all. The triangle test is a standard professional test (well, at least here in Switzerland) for sensoric detection of small differences: - checking the difference whether the wine was bottled with a cork or a screw top - checking for consequences of different storage temperatures - checking for the effects of some added acidity - checking for different degrees of malolactic fermentation etc. etc.
  21. What do you think was the price back when new, in real dollars of today or expressed in labour time?
  22. Depends of what's after the hood. If the canal is large, straight and short, you will have > 90% left of vent capacity. If it's long, twistet and narrow, it can go down to 40% or even less.
  23. But what's about aging? McGee, old edition, p. 98: "Today, most beef is cut up to separate the loin and ribs for brief aging in the cooler, while the less choice chuck and round are shipped to market immediately." In Austria, there's a long tradition of boiled (or rather simmered) beef. I a book, I found a reference telling that the once most famous beef restaurant of Vienna "Meissl & Schadn" (vanished after WW II) aged it's beef "exactly for two weeks" before boiling. I always suspected that the usual stiff price competition for the "inferior" cuts used for brasing or boiling doesn't allow for correct aging (think of cooler capacity and water loss). And I must admit, I have no idea about the aging process of the inferior cuts of prime beef.
  24. Cheval Blanc: - vineyard composition according to Clive Coates (in his "Grand Vins", 1995): roughly 65% Merlot and 35% CF, with very small quantities of CS [planted on demand of the INAO only] and some Malbec [never used for the "Grand vin". No comments on actual wine composition. - vineyard composition according to René Gabriel (a fine Swiss expert for Bordeaux; in his "Bordeaux Total", 2004): about 50%/50% Merlot/CF. - wine composition according to Gabriel: usually about 65% CF and 35% Merlot, but in 1999, 55%M and 45%CF; in 1997 70%M and 30%CF. He quotes Pierre Lurton: "When CF comes to perfection, we use it up to 70% in the blend". As a general comment, Gabriel thinks that the usually higher percentage of CF is the collectors "life insurance" for old millésimes of this wine. It seems that - at least until younger vintages - Cheval Blanc is/was a usually a CF-dominated wine.
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