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molto e

eGullet Society staff emeritus
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Everything posted by molto e

  1. Wing Lei at the Wynn Dinner: 5:30 pm - 10:30 pm (Casual Elegant) Reservations: (702) 248-DINE or (888) 352-DINE While I wish it would have been bestowed upon me at the casinos during my last trip to Las Vegas, all of my good fortune came with the simple decision to dine at Wing Lei at the Wynn. The cornucopia of fine dining options in Las Vegas these days continually causes me much consternation when trying to settle on a restaurant choice for the evening. However, Chef Richard Chen's establishment at Wing Lei has resolved many of my Las Vegas dining issues. Prior to being lured to the Wynn Resort by Elizabeth Blau, Chef Chen was running Shanghai Terrace at the Peninsula Hotel in Chicago. With Chef Chen at the helm, Shanghai Terrace was a foodie favorite in Chicago and his departure saddened his devoted fans. Chef Chen was born into the restaurant business in Taiwan, where his family ran their own restaurant. When Richard was a young man, the Chen family moved to the United States and settled in Chicago, where they once again settled into the restaurant business. Richard attended the prestigious Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, where he received formal training to complement his experience in the family business. After graduating from C.I.A, Richard moved to New York City and honed his craft for two years before moving back to Chicago to work at the Ritz Carlton under Chef Sarah Stegner. Soon thereafter, the Penninsula Hotel in Chicago hired Richard to be the chef at their new concept, Shanghai Terrace. The original intent was for Shanghai Terrace to be simple noodle concept, but after sampling the dishes at Richard's tasting, that concept was abandoned for his haute Chinese cuisine. Richard became known for using the highest quality ingredients while fusing Western ingredients and techniques into the preparation of classical Chinese cuisine. In typical Steve Wynn fashion, he gave Chef Chen carte blanche to enable Wing Lei to deliver to its patrons the finest dining experience possible. Richard offers Cantonese, Shanghai and Szechwan specialties, and for the high rollers that come from Asia to try their luck at the Wynn, Richard will prepare special custom menus. The special menus use ingredients that are not familiar to the Western palate like shark fin, dried abalone and various species of selected fish. The selected fish is flown in live from Asia and requires special handling on the flight over so that they arrive in good condition. Wing Lei also offers a Peking Duck tasing menu that has become very popular. Docsconz and I wanted to sample as much of Chef Chen's cuisine as possible and the list of dishes that we wanted kept growing until Chef Chen offered to prepare a tasting menu for us. Table Setting at Wing Lei Tasting Menu We started with cocktails prior to dinner... Coach K. was dining with his family at the table next to us Amuse - Lobster, Melon with Yuzu Dressing The lobster was tender and accentuated by the melon, crunch of the endive, slight acidic component from the creamy yuzu dressing and the briny caviar. This was a great way to start the meal and a preview of Chef Chen's ability to have his flavors meld seamlessly together. Seafood Dumpling with Saute Pea Leaves and Superior Broth The melange of seafood stuffing was encased in a tender wrapper that lay in a little pool of the broth. The broth was delicious and thicker than I have had with this kind of dish. GREAT DISH... Tempura Lobster with Jalapeno, Garlic Seasoning We did not know what our menu was because Chef Chen was preparing it on the fly. So when this dish was presented at the table, there was a communal whiplash effect between Doc and I. The sight of the whole lobster prepared tempura style brought a smile to my face. The lobster was deftly fried but the seasoning of this dish was spectacular. The dish was scattered with little pieces of garlic that resembled granola and when combined with the pepper made a great union. Chef Chen is able to balance the flavors in his dishes without one nuance overtaking the other. Sorbet We had initially planned on ordering one Peking Duck tasting menu and then adding a number of dishes that we also wanted to try. The table on the other side of us had ordered the Peking Duck tasting so as each course came to the table, I had a serious case of Peking Duck on the brain, until... Peking Duck Salad with Almonds, Crisp Orange Truffle Vinaigrette The salad was presented to both of us and ... wonton bowl being broken up and salad mixed Nice clean salad with the cruchy wonton and the meaty duck Braised Pork Belly with Abalone Mushroom, Green Bean At Shanghai Terrace, Chef Chen's pork belly dishes were legendary so we very happy when this dish arrived. The unctuous belly was delectable and the mushroom and the slight crunch of the green bean rounded out one of my ATF pork belly dishes. Wok Fried Kobe Beef with Scallion, Red eye Chili Sauce Before tasting the dish, I was worried that the sauce would take away from the Kobe beef. I have had Kobe beef before and enjoyed the marbling that only Kobe can have. One bite into this beef was like putting a piece of Freshen-up gum in your mouth with the EXPLOSION of juices that came from this amazing piece of meat. The sauce was a good complement with a bit of heat but nothing could over run the Kobe explosion. Dessert Sampler Chocolate Bar Pineapple Coconut Delight Sorbet Sampler The desserts were good... Wing Lei was a delight and Chef Richard Chen is a true talent, this feeling was echoed from every table within earshot. Any future trip to Las Vegas will definitely include a stop at Wing Lei!
  2. Downtown-Roosevelt Tavern-great selections of beers and good comfort bar food Sens-soup gyuza dumplings very good Breadfruit-Jamaican, I have not been there but heard good things Lo-Lo's Fried Chicken and Waffles- Lunch Matt's Big Breakfast-Breakfast and Lunch
  3. Sardinia Enoteca Ristorante 305-531-2228 1801 purdy avenue miami beach, fl There are just some restaurants that you stumble upon that click with what you look for in a restaurant experience and when I walked into Sardinia that was the feeling that I had. While visiting Miami, I went to Sardinia for a late lunch and after the meal I wanted to return for dinner. The Space Menu The idea was a light late lunch but after a glance at the menu that was no longer possible (when is it ). The Antipasti Misti section of the menu jumped out at me , that section is divided into Vegetali (3 for $12 or 5 for $15 ) and Salumi (3 for $14 or 5 for $18). Salumi Platter (starting on the left side of the board going clockwise) Coppa, Salamini di cinghiale and Culatello Yum All the salumi was served at the proper temperature and this was some of the better culatello that I have had. Vegetali (from left to right) Roasted beets with pancetta, Asparagus and pecorino, Caponatina the standout on the plate was the capontina Animelle, crispy sweetbreads with brussel sprouts and cipolline Tasty...the sweetbreads were just a shade past perfect Riccia, alla carbonara with guanciale I love carbonara and this was a great rendition Galletto, free range poussen marinated overnight with herbs and cannonau simple, rustic, tasty chocolate salami type dessert I highly recommend Sardinia and look forward to my next time there.
  4. Andreoli's Italian Grocer 8880 E. Via Linda Scottsdale, Az. 480-614-1980 10 AM - 8 PM ( m-th) 10 AM- 9 PM (f and sat) When I received a tip on an Italian deli from a New Yorker (eGulleter DRPNY), I immediately freed up my next meal to check it out (well actually I was there at 9:30 AM peering in thru the window). Andreoli's is a venture by Giovanni, the former owner of Lecabaffi and Galileo, and this is not the typical red sauce, chicken parm, meatball joint that the Valley has plenty of (and I like a few of those). Menu The location is slightly west of the corner at Via Linda and 90th st, on the Via Linda side of the Fry's Marketplace center. If you are travelling west on Via Linda from 90th, right before the underpass is an entrance to the center and the brown building is the Andreoli's. Andreoli's also sells various Italian staples: Pasta, anchovies, San Marzano tomatoes, cheeses, cured meats, house baked breads and pastries and beverages. I sampled the following: panino in porchetta - roasted pork, seasoned with garlic, fennel and black pepper $7.50 panino del tirolo - speck, pesto, tomatoes, and rucola $7.75 Both were good but I enjoyed the panino del tirolo a little more. arancini alla catanese - rice stuffed with Bolognese and peas, breaded and fried $5.00 pizzetta branca leon - pizza with mixed vegetables $5.00 Patatine e porri fritti con salsina ghiotta - potatoes and leek, deep fried served with Gianni sauce $5.00 These rocked...french fries with fried leeks served with an aioli There were two pasta specials...linguine con vongole and rigatoni amatriciana. For dessert, I sampled the chocolate cannoli and tiramisu. I definitely will be back and this is a great addition to the Valley.
  5. Richard hired my good friend Chef Brian Lewis to run both the of the concepts. Brian is a serious talent and you can read my report on him while he was at the Vu in Scottsdale. Also, Martha, yes that Martha, is a big fan of what Brian is doing up there. I very much look forward to getting up that way to see what Brian is doing with all the great purveyors that he has sourced for the project. He also brought in Sous-Chef Jeremy McMillan to work with him from Redd in Napa and previously Zinc Bistro in Phoenix. He also got a little love from the NY Times.
  6. Chris, 2 cups Red Wine Vinegar 1 cup Sugar 1 cup Water 3 pieces Whole Star Anise 1 Vanilla Bean Split 5 Allspice 1/2 Tablespoon Whole Black Peppercorns 4 cloves toast spices in a pan...add vin, water, sugar and v bean to toasted spices let simmer until sugar dissolves and everything has enough time to "mingle" then strain liquid over huckleberries and let cool to room temp then refrigerate for up to two weeks less fuss way to enjoy: come to noca...order...put in mouth...say yum we also use them on a seared foie dish with black pepper- fuji apple reduction, pickled huckleberries, brioche crouton... Best, E
  7. I had the unfortunate experience of wasting one of my precious meals in Paris at Ze Kitchen Galerie. This cuisine is fusion, confusion and as my friend now calls it "poofusion"-draw your own conclusion. The menu changes every five weeks or so and I can definitely say this version does not work. The larger problem exists with their service which at this hipster bistro was indifferent to say the least. This was the only place that I have ever dined at that took the food order and the waiter ran away before offering WINE-IN PARIS-PLEASE. I would liken the wait staff to the wait staff at a club that is suitable to offer drinks only, but we did not get that chance. http://forums.egullet.org/uploads/1125170207/gallery_30892_1677_70013.jpg Thread restarts below user input error-Sorry
  8. Spacca Napoli 1769 W. Sunnyside Chicago, Ill. 773-878-2420 With all the discussion of the best pizza in Chicago centered on the deep dish style, I have wanted to try the place most choose as the best Neapolitan style pie in town...Spacca Napoli. I went for an early lunch while the prep was being done for the day. Spacca prides itself on importing as much of the ingredients as possible from Italy. Imported Italian Mozzarella getting ready to meet some pizza Goodies Menu Daily Specials Where it all happens... We started with some nibbles before the pizza... Prosciutto e Buffala Olives Our order being made with the egg getting cracked on the pizza and into the oven We ordered a few pizzas to share: Rustica - mushrooms, olives, tomatoes, basil, mozzarella Lasagna - tomatoes, prosciutto cotto, pomodorini, ricotta, mozzarella Marinara - tomatoes, garlic, oregano, basil, olive oil and my favorite Bismark - speck, egg, mozzarella The pizzas were well crafted and tasty with the right balance of the toppings. When I am in the mood for this style of pizza in Chicago, Spacca Napoli is my top choice.
  9. we are limiting the covers for a bit, but ring me at the restaurant manana and I will make sure you are taken care of... E
  10. Eliot, congratulations on passing your inspections! Don't try this in the city of Los Angeles, unless you want more hoops to go through ... You might want to double-check your menu on your website for spelling et al.: Fettucine or Fettuccine? Please pardon the pickiness. Mind you, you don't get a second chance to make a first impression. No pressure, ehh? You got your purveyors all lined up? Are you sourcing your produce from California and/or more locally? What's been the buzz around town about your restaurant? Please respond at your earliest convenience, as though you have nothing else to do ... Again, wishing you well, Eliot. ← Hi Russell, Spelling is a moot point on that dish because we have taken that one off the final menu...as far as purveyors go-we have a few superstar local organic growers that we try and get as much product from as possible, but in the heat of the Arizona summer their offerings diminish. The produce company that we get the majority of our products from sources some things thru the Santa Monica Farmers Market. As for the buzz, let's see how it shakes out when we open up on Friday. Best, E
  11. I am also very anxious Genny. However, I believe Wednesday the 30th is the first night of service. ahurwich ← We will most definitely open up Friday August 1st...we just want to make sure everything is in place...
  12. we have the green light...we are going to open for business on Wednesday July 30...let me know when you are going to stop in E
  13. Final Inspections this morning...
  14. molto e

    Smoque BBQ - Chicago

    That is too bad and not at all representative of any of my visits there. What time of day did you try Smoque out? I can not get any good "Q" out my way and Smoque is a place that I crave.
  15. Thanks Genny...we will offer sweetbreads, marrow bones etc. down the line. We will print the menu in house so it will change very frequently. I like Graham Elliot's verbiage of "refined dining", our aim to to create an experience that we would like as a diner. Our Chef Chris Curtiss's background is in fine dining kitchens (Fifth Floor, Charles Nob Hill and Masa's both as Sous-Chef for Ron Siegel) so we will have the attention to detail from fine dining but presented in a casual but attentive atmosphere at an accessible price point. We will have a full bar and will have some fun with the drink offerings. The wine list will be comprised of California, French, Italian, Spanish and Australian wines with glasses from $6 - $12 and the bottles will have a range of pricing. I will have some dates soon as we have a couple of final inspections to follow... look forward to having you...
  16. Bev-Mo in Tempe is not that far from the airport Beverages & more! Tempe, AZ 15 S. McClintock Dr Tempe, AZ 85281 Store Contact: Email: store83@bevmo.com Phone: (480) 446-0368 Fax: (480) 446-0370 Zinc is open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner
  17. Doc...the method that I am familiar with is the standard method of poaching but stopping when barely set then into cold water...dry the egg and standard breading procedure then a quick fry so the egg stays molten...delicious...we will have a crispy poached egg with a prime ribeye at NOCA. E
  18. molto e


    Kitchen Arts and Letters in New York is where I bought my copy from...
  19. April 13, 2008 From the Arizona Republic: Vegas Dining...Food Critic Howard Seftel reviews a few high-end tables in Vegas. From the Phoenix New Times: Frozen Yogurt in the Valley...Stacey's Smokehouse...Overeasy...Humble Pie...Food Critic Michele Laudig's latest reviews... From the Tucson Citizen: Sunny Daze Cafe...Food Critic Tom Stauffer's latest review in "Cheap Eats" is the Sunny Daze Cafe, which he finds is an "imaginative, little island in an ocean of standard-issue breakfast and lunch joints>" Trattoria Pina...Tom Stauffer reviews Trattoria Pina and feels the "the house specialties have stood the test of time for good reason and will yield positive results." From the Tucson Weekly: Dragon's Village Restaurant...My Big Fat Greek Restaurant...Chow Bella...Bayou Cafe...some recent reviews from the Tucson Weekly gang. Good Eating, Molto E
  20. molto e

    [SF] SPQR

    Everyone that I know that has eaten there loves it.
  21. sorry I did not see your post until now...
  22. Sea Saw Restaurant 7133 E. Stetson Dr. Scottsdale- 480-481-9463 Nobuo Fukuda, the Chef of Sea Saw, serves Japanese tapas style food that is wine friendly and called Izakaya. I love Sea Saw so much that I wonder if Nobuo is spiking the tuna with something because I can't get enough of it . This is ingredient driven cuisine and Chef uses the best. Sea Saw has a menu with hot and cold dishes, but to experience Chef Nobuo Fukuda at his best sit at the counter and let him guide you with his Omakase menu (tasting). Nobuo was a Food and Wine Magazine "Best Chef" in 2003 and a 2005 James Beard Foundation "Best Chef Southwest" finalist in 2005. Oyster with Uni in tomato water with a little wasabi oil I usually start my meals off at Sea Saw with these and they are delicious Nobuo grating a Wasabi root to use with the Big Eye Tuna. He uses a shark skin grater and grates from each end because the root end is hot and gooey and the top end where it flowers is watery and sweet so you combine them. The shark skin is used because it causes a chemical reaction with the wasabi to release the flavors. Nobuo has spoiled me by using the fresh wasabi, because it is so much better than the paste that is typically used. The sashimi platter with two kinds of Spanish Mackerel(Sanma and Aji) and Hawaiian Big Eye Tuna. The Aji is served with ginger, chive and soy The Sanma is fatter, tender and sweeter than the Aji and served with onion, dried deep fried chile, truffle sauce and japanese citrus- seudachi. The big eye tuna is from Hawaii and on the dish the darker red pieces are akami (red meat) and the lighter pieces are chutoro (medium fatty). I have gone to Sea Saw 3 out of four nights because I love the tuna so much. Nobuo says that when the Bluefin is in season that it blows away the big eye so I probably will just eat at Sea Saw every night then. This is the sea bream with basil chips and beets and it is like red snapper from Japan-so good Panko crusted soft shell crab with Nuoc Mam sauce and a rice noodle salad that is under the crab- I get this every time it is on the menu Japanese mushroom melange baked in parchment paper Pork belly wrapped in a banana leaf- this is some of the best pork belly that I have ever had-it just melts in your mouth The lamb is marinated in peanut butter, coconut milk, curry, chicken stock, mirin. The red sauce is a roasted red pepper vinegarette-red pepper, mirin, vinegar, grapeseed oil. The cucumbers are japanese varietals marinated with sunomono dressing and sesame seeds and they are a palate cleanser. Cool Duck- pan seared breast, chilled, soy-zinfandel reduction I get this every time I go to Sea Saw-love it. Shinshu mushi- steamed sea bass, green tea soba noodles, ume-shiso mushroom broth The dessert is a creme brulee croquette with a coconut covering and habanero and mango chutney with a cilantro syrup. The icecream is sweet corn with coconut tapioca. I love this dessert Sea Saw is one of my favorite restaurant in town and once you go there you will be a fan of Nobuo also. My other Phoenix picks are: Binkleys http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=72680 Cyclo- http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=74197 Lo-Lo's Fried Chicken- http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=72127 Pizzeria Bianco Zinc Bistro Good Eating, Molto E
  23. I stopped in yesterday and found a new menu since my last visit...
  24. molto e

    Old Town Brasserie

    was there an up charge for the fig course