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Matteo

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  1. Bols makes a product called Wasabi Smash. I use it to make Bloody Marys with a spicy asian flair.
  2. Actually, I posted about a disappointing dinner at the Lab on the "other" board a few years ago and you disagreed with my assessment. I actually went back, largely due to the huge amount of attention bestowed upon it by you and others on the "other" board. Sadly, I was again, disappointed. That's not to say that the food was not good, to very good. It was. A few dishes were even excellent. I just found very little value in the experience (Saturday night, $130pp), and was not impressed. I greatly enjoy reading your reviews, Joe, but I just respectfully disagree. As an aside, the wine mark-ups are so egregious they should be criminal. Terruzi & Puthod Terre di Tufi was, I believe $60. A 400% mark-up, and it was their best value white wine. I almost opted to drink NO WINE, but cooler heads prevailed (my wife's) and we went with the wine pairing instead. $60. They were very generous with their pours, but not a single bottle would retail for more than $12.
  3. Try David Embury's The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks. It's a great guide to understanding how a great drink is crafted. although out of print now, you can still find copies online. I also enjoy Maria Costantino's The Cocktail Handbook. There is a picture of every drink in the book, which is sometimes all the inspiration I need.
  4. So glad to see that I'm not the only one who thinks Bobby Flay is a shoemaker and an egomaniac. The chefs in his restaurants must dread the thought of him even being in the kitchen with them. So far I've seen him almost electrocute himself, cut his finger, struggle to make a Waring blender work(and without a lid), blame his staff for his own poor instructions (the chutney and the chops being too big)--which, BTW I still don't understand why his sous chef was butchering the theme ingredient while Mister Flay(sic) was cutting onions and garlic. Not to mention the "Mister Bayless" gaff! Also I'd love to know why he was walking across the kitchen with a flaming pan of bourbon( I can't imagine any reason why he would have needed to flame it anyway--the alcohol would have burned off in the sauce without the flames). I'd have slapped him in the mouth just on general principles for taking my life in his hands that way. I digress... On a different note I do think the judges so far have been pretty bad. This could point to a fault in the American palette(the Extra sauce and Supersize it mentality) And what happened to discussion of how closely the chefs hi-lighted the theme ingredient? Certainly if this was a criterion for judging(as I believe it was in the original show), Chef Bayless' cuisine would have reigned supreme.
  5. Try these for next year: Flat Tax-Equal parts alcohol for all-Absolut, Bacardi, Beefeater, Cuervo, fresh lemon and a splash of coke 1040 EZ- Tanquerey 10, splash of fresh lime and a splash of Pernod Blood from a Stone-Blood orange Charbay, Splash of blood orange juice and a splash of grenadine Loupehole- Bacardi Lemon, Midori, Peach schnapps and a splash of soda Harvey Bean Counter-Absolut Kurant, Fresh OJ and Galliano
  6. I had a customer over the summer want her meal comped because she was stung by a mosquito. She was eating outside.
  7. I'm suprised to hear anything bad said about Paradiso. Although I have never eaten anywhere other than at the bar, the pizzas and salads that I've had have been close to perfection. Wood-fired, excellent crust (chewy and crispy) and with a bevy of traditional toppings. I usually go for the bottarga pie with a perfectly cooked runny egg baked in the center. This is incredibly hard if you've ever thrown a pie in a wood-burning oven! The bartender has never not bought me a glass of the Chimay they sell on tap in addition to several other hand-picked drafts. The winelist is all Italian and there is a great cocktail list as well, including several sangrias. I love this place.
  8. Matteo

    Disney Trip

    If you are staying out at Disney, Flying Fish at the Boardwalk rocks. Antonio's at Sandlake, Cafe D'Antonio in Celebration, or Antonio's in Maitland (all same owner) are all wonderful authentic Italian. HUE is just outside downtown O-town with great decor and some of the best Asian fusion. Cheers.
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