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Ariel Schor

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  1. I always say 'behind' or 'watch behind' in public. I too get anxious while shopping with people at the supermarket...i essentially end up gathering everything in a few minutes. Great Peripheral vision is also something I gained from working a tight line and learning stations on the fly.
  2. I decided to post this question in the Restaurant Life topics, as it is definitely guided to professionals that have a lot of experience in this area. I recently became co-chef of a restaurant in my city. The two of us split the duties of running a 220 seat restaurant that serves refined casual fare with some high-end ingredients. We have both always had the same dream of being able to cure salumi and dry-age beef in a professional environment. Due to our re-structuring in the kitchen, we now have the possibility of turning our smallest walk-in refrigerator (approx 10'L, 6'W, 8'H) into an aging or curing room. I understand that these processes require specific sanitary controls, and that is something that I have to speak to our local health authorities about...but i'm mostly curious to see if anyone has done this, and has any advice on the matter. Ariel
  3. I was just there this past February. L'express was a great dinner, informal bistro with very knowledgeable, friendly staff and amazing rilletes and pot au feu. You MUST NOT MISS your chance to eat at Au Cinquieme Peche...one of the best dinners i've ever had. Small restaurant, amazing chef and some of the most hospitable staff ever...have the sweetbreads, the seal and the venison. Just down the street you will find Kouign Amman, a great bakery where you should eat their specialty/namesake pastry. APDC is pure epicurean debauchery...their pig's foot is out of this world, and the foie terrine is spectacular. I heard great stuff about Restaurant DNA but did not get to go. Fromagerie Hamel is also a place you must not miss...there's one about 1/2 a block away from Jean Talon.
  4. Every plate that comes back empty, with obvious streaks of 'Bread Mopping'.
  5. I'd like to own an Inn by the sea, a few minutes outside Victoria, BC (Canada). Inn capacity would be capped off at 20 people, dining Room at 50, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. It would have a farm, vineyards and orchards where we would source as much as possible. Menu would be dictated by the weather and the seasons, and it would change whenever possible. We would raise Pigs, Cows, Chickens, Ducks (for foie gras), Lamb and Goats. We would specialize in Charcuterie, make our own fresh and aged cheeses and wines, preserves, pickles, breads, etc. Basically, artisanal heaven.
  6. It's actually the other way around, but I feel like there are greater odds to find good local beers than wines. So, its a given that you're going to find better local beers than local wines. However, should I assume you're not looking for local wines? Are you looking for a place to buy bottles or for a restaurant where you can eat and enjoy the wine together? I guess I should have clarified. I'm looking for a place to buy bottles.
  7. It's actually the other way around, but I feel like there are greater odds to find good local beers than wines.
  8. Thanks for the tip! This is all tentative at the moment, just trying to weed out the places locals woulnd't recommend. Just out of curiosity, what's a good example of Chicago-style pizza?
  9. I'm traveling to Chicago in less than two weeks, and will be spending a mere ten days in the city. As a professional cook, I'm just as excited as when I traveled to NYC last summer. To make the most of it, I have already made a reservation for one at Alinea, and also plan to visit a few other establishments (The Publican, Hot Doug's, Frontera Grill, Burt's, amongst others). However, my plan is not really to spend all my money in restaurants: I have rented out an apartment for our stay located on West Huron, which includes a well equipped kitchen. The plan is to visit various markets/specialty stores and try to cook as much local food as possible. What I'm looking for are markets around my area (we will not have a car available) as well as cheese shops, specialty food stores, Wine Merchants, Purveyors of local beers, Traditional French Patisserie and Bakeries, etc. So far, I have been suggested the following: Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine Chicago Green City Market Isaacson & Stein Rubino's Seafood Plus there is a whole foods a few blocks away. Any other suggestions? In addition, if anyone can think of any restaurants in the area that I should and or shouldn't visit, please don't hesitate to comment! We're not big drinkers, and my parents are fans of well prepared, quality food (nothing overly fussy or exceeding $50/pp. I was also thinking of adding Avec to the list. Ariel
  10. I truly Recommend 112 Eatery and Saffron (out of that list) See my last post on THIS thread for more detailed reviews.
  11. My Apologies...I completely forgot to post the write up of our trip...This dates back to last March. Ariel Ok...it's been quite the trip, and we return home tomorrow. I am not looking forward to going back, as this city's culinary scene blew me away. Great food, properly priced and extremely hospitable service will be missed. As promised, here's a breakdown of where we ate, what we had and a few lines on each place. First evening in town, after the 7hr drive from Winnipeg was @ 112 Eatery - Roasted Spicy Nuts and Marinated Olives placed on table, as well as Ciabatta-style Bread - Pate Bahn Mi - Crispy Veal Tongue with cold Noodle Salad - Foie Gras Meatballs on Tagliatelle - Cauliflower Fritters Bahn Mi and Veal tongue were sublime, expertly preparated. The Foie dish was a revelation...i would have never thought that Foie and Reggianno worked together so seamlessly. Cauliflower fritters were also delicious. Service was very relaxed and very attentive, some of the best in the trip. We headed to Solera right after that and were truly dissapointed. We were actually mad when we left due to the overpriced food and the chain-like atmosphere. Oddly enough, my brother and I got flashed by a pair of drunken customers at the bar. Did not enjoy it. The next day we went for lunch @ a Crepe joint on nicollet which only had room for 6, and barely enough room for a dishpit and a makeshift kitchen, all in the open. I had a perfect whole wheat crepe w/gorgonzola, sausage, tomato and creme fraiche, while my brother had a ham and gruyere crepe. Later on we headed towards Calhoun square to hit up Penzey’s for some spices. Found some lovely bay leaves, nutmeg and Szechuan peppercorns. Went to Pho Tau Bai for dinner that evening. - Fresh Spring Rolls (Pork and Shrimp) - Pho Tau Bai (Flank, Tendon, Tripe, Meatballs) - Bahn Mi (Fried egg, Pate, Charcutes) - Vietnamese Coffee Every item was insanely fresh and truly delicious. A bargain at a mere $26. The Broth in the Pho was out of this world. The next morning we had a hearty and delicious breakfast at Hell’s Kitchen, conveniently 4 blocks away from our hotel. - Fingerling Potato + Corned Beef Hash w/sunny side up Eggs - Over easy Eggs w/Bison Sausage and Rosti Potatoes After spending the remainder of the morning in Ikea, we headed back towards Calhoun Square for a snack of oysters and calamari @ Stella’s Fish Café. Frozen Mignonette served with the oysters was a great twist. Went back to the hotel after Stella’s, then headed out again for dinner at Saffron, where we had: - Hummus + House baked bread - Lamb’s Brain w/Tomato Confit - Eggplant dip w/Piquillo Peppers and Pomegranate Molasses - White Anchovies w/Preserved Lemon + Radish - Grilled Haloumi w/Black Onion Seed and Tomato Jam - Sheep’s Milk Feta w/Fennel, Oregano + Pink Peppercorn - Beef Kubbeh, Cucumber Yogurt + Mint - Winter Greens, Lemon and Olive oil - Beef Carpaccio, Truffled Brown Butter Vinaigrette, Hazelnuts - Chocolate and Hazelnut Cake, Brown Butter Ice Cream, Caramelized Banana and Tamarind Caramel Wine: Montes Alpha Pinot Noir Arak Turkish Coffee This was defintitely the most enjoyable meal of the trip. Every dish we ordered was spectacular, especially the brains, grilled haloumi and the greens. I recommend this restaurant to anyone who travels to Minneapolis for a true taste of refined middle eastern flavours. Our waiter was knowledgeable, passionate and very attentive, which just made the night for us. Woke up late the next morning, and picked up a quick coffee at Dunn Bros. Headed to the Walker art Center for a tour of the exhibitions, then went for lunch @ Town Talk Diner. - Sourdough Onion Rings - Pulled Pork Sandwich, Parsley Garlic Fries - Truffled Mac ‘n Cheese, Ham and Peas Onion Rings and Pulled pork were delicious, and the fries as well. The Mac n Cheese lacked a lot of truffle flavour, and the cheese sauce was not what I expected…it tasted processed, and I’ve had better Mac N Cheese than that from a box. Homemade Iced Tea was great. Off to La Belle Vie for Dinner that night in their lounge. Tasting Menu - Gougeres - Seared Scallops w/Meyer Lemon and Fennel - Lobster and Salsify Soup, Lobster Foam and Black Truffle - Skate Wing + Rock Shrimp w/Brown Butter Vinaigrette, Caper Emulsion - Grilled Lamb Tenderloin and Braised Shoulder w/Celeriac Puree, Sunchokes, Arugula and Moroccan Spiced Jus - Chocolate Gateaux, Milk Chocolate Panna Cotta, Cava Sorbet, Mascarpone Semifreddo Wines: Oloroso Sherry, Charles Heidsick Champagne, Napa Meritage, Late Harvest Monastrell Food was excellently executed and very refined. The Lamb and Dessert were my favourites, and the wine pairings were great. Service, on the other hand, rather inconsistent. I wasn’t expecting to get served as well as if we had sat at the restaurant, but it really put a damper on the evening. One particular sour note was the runner that delivered most of the courses to our table. He carried the plates not in steady hand, but with his arms slightly swinging, as if he was strutting with plates in his hand. As a cook, it hurt… Went for a walk around downtown later on that night, for a drink at Bradstreet Crafthouse. - Pimm’s Cup (Pimm’s, Tanqueray, Watermelon, Mint, Strawberry, Cucumber) - Bradstreet Cocktail (Jameson, Egg White, Lemon, Jasmine) Food - Sea Bass Ceviche (Green Curry, Crispy Skin, Watermelon Espuma, Basil) - Grass-fed Beef Sliders w/Local Cheddar, Homemade Ketchup + Pickled Onions Impressive décor and lovely drink selection. The Pimm’s Cup was a great choice with my Ceviche. Lunch on our last full day in the Twin Cities was at Brasa. - Chicken and Pork Platter, Guacamole, Collard Greens w/Smoked Turkey - Pork and Beef Platter, Corn Grits w/Cheddar, Collard Greens w/Smoked Turkey - Cornbread w/Honey Butter Another delightful meal….after all that fine-dining of the prior night we were craving some comfort food, and honestly, I can’t thing of anything more comforting than braised meat, grits, greens and cornbread. Another place I recommend to everyone that goes to the Twin Cities. Our last night was spent @ Barrio, where we picked a bunch of things to share off their menu. - Crab Empanadas w/Avocado and Salsa Verde - Barbeque Pork Sopes w/Habanero Pickled Onions - Diver Scallop Ceviche w/Orange, Grapefruit, Cilantro and Avocado - Queso Fundito w/Roasted Poblanos and Chorizo - Pork Carnitas Taco w/Serrano Chile Salsa - Grilled Skirt Steak Taco w/Roasted Poblano Rajas - Churros - Tres Leches Cake Highlights of the night were the Queso Fundido (Gooey melted cheese and beers…how can you go wrong?) The Ceviche and The Tacos. Churros were really great, but the Tres Leches cake was dry.
  12. I've been a huge fan of Anthony Bourdain ever since "Kitchen Confidential" came out, and as a professional cook, I am all but obsessed with food. Through "A Cook's Tour" and "No Reservations" I have definitely been bit by the travel bug, and am now starting to look for destinations for travel. I want to find books about specific countries or regions with a first person narrative, essentially a log of a journey but mainly food centric. I am mostly interested in South and Central America, Mediterranean Europe, North Africa, India/Sri Lanka and Asia. Any Suggestions?
  13. In Argentina, Asado de Tira is simply a strip of Beef Rib bones cut to about 4-5cm in width, still held together by meat, collagen and silverskin...essentially a long strip of short ribs.
  14. I agree wholeheartedly. Besides, the Argentine beef, dry aged or not WILL come frozen, in cryovac. Buy local, dry aged, grass fed, and you'll have the closest experience. If you want to taste argentine beef, you really have to go to Argentina. I lived the first 13 years of my life there and have never been satisfied with the flavour of any other beef. Plus the offal (especially the liver, tripe and sweetbreads) are superb.
  15. Hey guys, thanks again for all your recommendations. I got back thursday and friday I was back on the line, so I have not had any time to write down all my thoughts/reviews. Should have time by Thursday. Ariel
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