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Everything posted by hapacooking

  1. Outstanding volumes. I have all of the earlier books but the new 2005-2011 is well laid out and has a better recipe index system as opposed to the CDROMs in the earlier editions. However, I must admit the earlier editions were printed on a bit nicer bond paper than the new set but the new set's paper is quite nice. Photography is stunning and on par with earlier books and in some regards probably a bit better in most instances. It looks like a lot of the photos in the 2005 volume are exactly the same as the photos in the old 2005 standalone volume but some actually look new and different. Each recipe in the old volumes usually had a short description around the thoughts that went behind constructing the dish or what the motivation was around that particular dish. Unfortunately, with the new 2005-2011 set, these descriptions are absent but the recipes are much easier to access compared to the earlier books and the recipes are a bit clearer. In the 2003-2004 set as well as the standalone 2005 book, there were some photo sets showing some step-by-step progress of constructing a dish, sadly these type of photos are not included in the new set. However, one new interesting feature in each of the volumes is a section called "What could have been but wasn't" which lists the name of certain dishes that didn't make it that year. I really wish they would have provided more details of each of these dishes consisted of or why they didn't make it. Also at the beginning of each volume, there is a photo of the entire staff for that year. The last volume, Evolutionary Analysis, provides a very comprehensive summary of the philosophy behind El Bulli and the compositions of the dishes. Although I have not studied the set exhaustively yet, lots of the dishes seem to be able to made in most home kitchens without lots of extra and exotic hardware. Having Texturas products would be helpful for some of the creations. If you have a Thermomix, Pacojet and access to liquid nitrogen, you should be all set to make a majority of the dishes. At first glance I did not see any use of a Gastro-vac or Rotavap for any of the recipes but I did see a few that asked for blast chiller. I was lucky enough to dine at El Bulli twice so this new set brings back some of the magical memories of my experinces as well as providing lots of inspiration for my next dinner party. For me, it is indispensable.
  2. Yes Amazon.ca did raise their price as well as Amazon.com recently. Since this set weights over 40lb, shipping costs from anyone other than Amazon will be expensive. JBPrince has it for $487 but shipping to California was somewhere north of $65. You can see if the publisher Phaidon still has their $500 offer with free shipping but I would just keep watching Amazon.ca and hopefully the price will drop soon. It usually does once they get more in stock and the demand dies down.
  3. Amazon.ca still has the best price. $393CDN and with shipping to the US, it is only $362US much less than what Phaidon is charging as well as Amazon.com
  4. Albert still owes me a copy of Natura. Used copies occasionally show up on Amazon, but they are never priced below $249. chefsbinder.com has it for $159
  5. actually if you watch the 1st video you can see what it looks like a re-issue of the 1983-2004 books also.
  6. I picked up the El Cellar de Can Roca book from Kitchen Arts and Letters in NYC. It was $120 plus shipping. Beautiful book. Photography is fantastic and the story of the Roca brothers and the history and philosophy of the restaurant is very interesting. The recipes are outstanding and approachable with some of my favorites included . My only complaint is that the production quality of the book is pretty cheap. It is sort of a paperback book that looks like it was self-published/produced. Doesn't look like it will last the test of time and for the cost it is quite disappointing.
  7. I have a Thermomix, a KA 6qt and my new toy, a Hobart 6qt. Although the Thermomix is great for some things, the bowl isnt big enough for lots of baking needs. The Hobart is just genius. It is not commercially available, I don't think, but if you can find one, buy it. All of the KA 6qt attachments also for the Hobart.
  8. I have been to Kauai many times and was just there for a 10 day vacation. Kauai isnt known for its great cuisine choices but here are some of my thoughts and recommendations. Best high-end restaurant in Kauai is in Princeville at the St. Regis Hotel. Jean-Georges Kauai Grill is divine. Some of the best prepared high-end food you can have in all of Hawaii. Expensive but worth it if you want a special dinner. We ate there on their opening night a few years ago and recently tried it again and it was just as good the second time around. I also recommend the Makana Terrace for lunch at the St. Regis. Incredible views. There is a restaurant north of Hanalei which seem to get good recommendations called the Mediterranean Gourmet, I would skip it at all cost. Food is highly overrated and is a big tourist trap. In Hanalei, your choices are limited but if you are looking for great sushi, try the Dolphin. Bar Acuda is also a nice place for interesting flavors with a great wine list. in Lihue, I highly recommend 22North. interesting little restaurant that only uses local farm fresh ingredients. Great place for lunch or dinner. In Poipu, Merrimans has the best food on this side of the island but the decor is not the greatest compared to their Maui and Big Island venues. Red Salt is interesting but a bit too trendy for me. Flavors did not add up. Roys is always a safe bet but the decor and location isnt the greatest. Josselin's Tapas Bar and Grill is actually quite good but has spotty service. Whatever you do or whatever your concierge tells you, skip the Beach House for food. It is a great place to watch the sunset and have a drink but the food and service caters to tourist to the extreme. awful food. if you drive up to Princevillle there is a small outdoor restaurant in Anahola called Ono Burger. I highly recommend it for a quick burger even though the flies and chickens can be annoying.
  9. Pages 128-129 are the continuation of the Black Bass recipe on 127. Thanks. I should have looked at it a bit closer before posting. I just skimmed the book and saw the empty page. doh
  10. Book is quite beautiful. The recipes look challenging but not impossible to make. It seems that there the dish on pages 128-129 is missing a name for the dish. Does everyone's copy have this error or is it just mine?
  11. The Spanish manufacturer, Sosa, used to make a 'glow-in-the-dark' powder additive. Not sure if they still make the stuff. With black light, it is pretty cool. I made the Fat Duck liquid nitrogen macha tea/lime meringue dragon's breath thing and with a black light the 'glowing breath' was fun.
  12. hapacooking

    Morel Mushrooms

    One thing I always do with fresh morels is place them in a zip lock bag for a few hours with most of the air removed from the bag. This will allow the worms to exit the mushroom as they get starved for oxygen. The small worms can easily be cleaned/removed from the morels and then they are ready to cook without any soaking.
  13. I have watched every season of TC and TCM and this is nothing other than a train wreck. The host is awful and the 'Master Chefs" are unfortunately not Master Chefs. Get rid of the idiotic and useless host and wait until you can attract a better roster of Master Chefs before putting this mess on the air again. Please make it stop! The only think worst than this nightmare was the Marcel Quantum thing on the SyFy channel. Now that was an utter unwatchable bore fest.
  14. http://www.alineaphile.com/archives/10-Errata,-Alinea-cook-book,-first-edition.html
  15. CalPep is a must! It is beyond fantastic. Unfortunately unless you can reserve the back room, getting a large party in there with the bar-style seating will be close to impossible. La Boqueria is also a must. Great place to have a mid-day snack or lunch. As I understand, Ferran and Albert have a couple of new ventures, 41º a cocktail bar with traditional El Bulli snacks and La Vida Tapa which is tapas style restaurant, but I understand you need to buy tickets online ala Grant Achatz's Next model, http://www.ticketsbar.es/en Have fun and I wish I was joining you.
  16. Since it is a downloadable PDF, there is always a way to print it.
  17. Not sure I would characterize this as a 'secondary market'. This is just some idiot in the UK who doesn't have the books yet and thinks he can charge $150 more than Amazon.uk with the same delivery date.
  18. I would go with 25k or even 30K. This is based on a few general assumptions. 1) Demand will definitely increase for the holiday season as the word gets out. It is a perfect gift. A $450 book makes Christmas shopping an somewhat painless task. One gift, done. I have had my copy of MC for about a week and several friends and acquaintances who have seen it at my house already mentioned that it will be great holiday gift even all of them are casual chefs, at best. Small sample size but 15 people looked at the book, unprovoked, 8 of them definitely said it would be on their want list or would get it. 2) I have shown it to quite a few friends who are not chefs but are engineers and techies and they could not put the book down. I assume that once the word spreads in SIlicon Valley lots of techies will be ordering it. Once you get the Google crowd get exposed to it, watch out. 3) With the concerns of printing, availability of raw materials and services and shipping delays from the recent seismic activity in that part of the world, as well as the continuing uncertainty in that part of the world in the coming months, I would order a larger amount. If you get stuck with extra copies, I am sure that if you put them in the local San Jose Costco, they will be sold within days. I could be wrong but sometimes you have to shoot from the gut.
  19. My order status on Amazon just went to "Shipping Soon" a few minutes ago. "This portion of your order is being prepared for shipment and cannot be canceled or changed." YAY!!! BTW, I ordered it on May 25th.
  20. I ordered it on Amazon on May 25th and Amazon moved my ship date from March 7th to March 11th. I guess I am not in the first 500
  21. Essential Cooking by Michel Bras is another one which is extremely tough to cook from. I have tried 3 recipes and two of them were acceptable..one went into the garbage.
  22. I have made over 30 dishes from Alinea and all but two have turned out fantastic. Lots of work with somewhat challenging techniques but well worth the effort. French Laundry is also challenging but well worth the effort. No special equipment required as mentioned above. I have cooked over 30 dishes from FL and everyone has turned out fabulous and tasty. I have only attempted two recipes from Fat Duck and one came out great and the second did not come out as expected. A bit more complicated than Alinea in my opinion. I have made over 50 recipes from the El Bulli volumes and they ALL came out great. Books that I only look at and have not cooked from. The Charlie Trotter series. Not sure why. Every recipe is complicated but nothing jumps out at me. Clorofilia by Adoni Luis Adruiz. Even after translating the recipe into english, I back away. I will find the courage someday. Quique Dacosta. Eventhough it is in english, I have only looked at the photos and admired the dishes. I will find the courage. Lastly, Morimoto..way too complicated even though most of the ingredients are available here in the bay area.
  23. I was recently in Sydney and had the opportunity to experience, Quay, Marque, Tetsuya, Otto, Longrain and Rockpool Bar and Grill. I would skip Tetsuya altogether. Although the fish was prepared extremely well and there were some highlights to the meal, the service was spotty, the decor looked 'tired' and overall the experience was very very underwhelming and surely not worth the expense, in my opinion, You will not go wrong with Quay and Marque. Otto is a great Italian seafood restaurant on Woolloomoolo Harbor which is nice place for lunch if the weather is good. Longrain served some of the best and innovative Thai food we have ever had. Fun family-style food with great cocktails. Rockpool Bar and Grill was okay but nothing worth going back to.
  24. From what I understand, it has nothing to do with marketing but clearly the fact that it has been harder and harder to come up with new concepts each and every year and he has decided that in order to continue to be innovative, they needed some time to reflect on what they have done and use that as a springboard for new creative ideas. Hence the 2-year hiatus. The restaurant has never made money and making money from El Bulli has never been a motivation for Ferran. His consulting for various food related companies along with his product sales keeps El Bulli running.
  25. Raising the Salad Bar is a fairly new one which I have used and it has some great recipes. http://www.amazon.com/Raising-Salad-Bar-Gr...50515011&sr=8-1
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