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Everything posted by chaudfroidoeuf

  1. I'd be grateful if members could include good huitlacoche dishes sampled at the Mexican restaurants they mention. I'm not particularly enamored with Mexican food, but would go to a restaurant for huitlacoche. I've only had it in a chicken dish at Maya; the taste was not as robust as I had imagined.
  2. Andy & Simon: Was your group in the restaurant? I was eating in the bar area beginning around 8:45 pm Tuesday (my second meal at St John in as many days). Admittedly, I chose an eclectic combination of dishes; however, the meal was less good than the first. The game broth tasted somewhat Bovril-like. I couldn't quite tell what game had been used in the clear both (it was described as including pheasant) based on the taste. I also had the chicken liver toast (v. large portion), the smoked mackerel, and the crab with mayonnaise. The crab required more work to access the meat than most. On the things that might help a Michelin star, improving the wine service would be one aspect. There's apparently no sommelier (the waiters provide advice, which appeared limited when I heard it being dispensed to neighbouring diners). The waiters did not regularly refill wine glasses or water glasses after they made the first pour. These aren't necessarily unfavorable aspects of a restaurant -- just negatives w/r/t macarons.
  3. On dress code at Paris restaurants, the reservationist at Pierre Gagnaire described a tie as being "strongly recommended" (in French, with emphasis). Also, Ducasse at Plaza Athenee gave me the more normal version of ties being preferred. That being said, I have seen diners at both restaurants without ties. Wholly apart from dress code, I affirmatively want to dress well when I visit I restaurant I like. I also happen to believe it may help with respect to service at restaurants with which a diner is unfamiliar.
  4. In Vancouver, sliced Alberta ribeye can be sampled for Cฤ (less than USฝ) on an "all-you-can-eat" basis at the Japanese restaurant Daikon Ya (near, but not at, the corner of Burrard and Robson in downtown). I had some earlier this month. The teppanyaki chef told me the beef was from Alberta when I inquired about the appealing texture of the beef. Please call the restaurant to confirm this fact if you are contemplating going. Also, the restaurant has limited operating hours. The deal is that you have about an hour to eat as much as you can of paper-thin beef slices wrapped around diced fried garlic and spring onions and cooked in front of you on a steel surface to order. I ordinarily do not accept time limitations, but the deal was too good to bypass. The beef was flavorful, although I would have preferred thicker portions so that the texture and fat concentrations could be sampled. The quoted price included: salad, a small piece of Atlantic salmon (average), veggies, miso soup, pickles and a choice of green tea or sesame ice cream. Also included is fried rice -- nicely made by first creating an omlette and then mixing the omlette into the rice. Side orders of enoki mushrooms and British Columbia oysters were nice too. A good price-to-quality relationship.
  5. From the list provided by Peter, the restaurants I liked when I lived in NY are similar to those recommended by Yvonne: Union Pacific Patria (ceviches; used to have smoked Argentinian beef) Gotham Bar and Grill Aureole Another option in view of a tighter budget is: Joe's Shanghai on West 56th or in Chinatown -- super Shanghainese thin-skinned dumplings with crab, crab roe and richly flavored soup inside; also very economical; same crab/roe mixture is available in tofu (soft) dish.
  6. There's also a table in the kitchen at Gordon Ramsay, Claridge's (the occupant would be paying extra even though more food should generally be available -- reportedly 100 pounds/person). I have a dinner booking for Friday, Dec 28 that I may later give up. 50/50 likelihood. I may not know for another 10 days or so. (PS: Mark Sargeant, I believe (?), is the executive chef and not Ramsay. There's no assurance of seeing Ramsay for those who are considering the table for that reason. That Royal Hospital Road is closed on that day might increase the chances of Ramsay's being at Claridge's, though.) Would anybody be interested in taking the reservation (for 2-5 people) if I were to give it up?
  7. I'd have to agree with Simon and J. Meades on Nahm. Based on my visit in late September, certain of the ancient Thai recipes pursued by David Thompson brought relatively new flavor combinations, but lacked subtlety and relied on excessive seasoning. For those interested, here are details. Some of the dishes were not described in at least the first round of reviews, and may be useful for those considering a visit. (Background: I'm receptive to spicy foods, but admit to a dire preference for French food :)) Ma Hor (minced prawns and chicken simmered in palm sugar with deep fried shallots, garlic and peanuts, served on pineapples and mandarins): This dish sounded better than it tasted, although it had generally been well-received in most reviews. For me, the blended ingredients were unduly paste-like in texture. Dtam Yam Pla Grapong (hot and sour soup with sea bass): How could I resist ordering sea bass soup? In hindsight, I should have. The hot flavors were unbridled; the sour aspects were not well-integrated. More troublingly, there was a small green pepper in the soup that, when bitten into, literally left my eyes tearing (for the wrong reasons, of course!) and my mouth feeling blighted. This and certain other dishes were too aggressive for me. Yam Hoi Shenn (salad of scallops with green mango, samphire, mint and chillis): The thing scallop slices, though tender, were heavy-handedly riddled with lime juice and coriander. Geng Pet Pla (red curry of turbot with kaftir lime leaves and coriander): The fish was quite nice, but the red curry resembled others I had had at many other Thai restaurants. Geng Hong Nok Heun (red leg partridge braised with lily stalks): Again, the dish sounded good, especially when i love nasturtium flowers (Arpege) and have also found interesting courgette flowers (Chanterelle in NYC), violets (syrup common in Provence; possible use with champagne) and oxalis (wood sorrel has white flowers that are at times used in an amuse-bouche at Auberge de l'Eridan). However, the taste of the partridge was difficult to discern amidst the very spicy, accompanying brown sauce. Mangosteen fruit with sweet rice: This dessert, with a fruit I tried for the first time, was a welcome relief from the rest of the meal. For Andy: Your responses to everybody help dialogue on this site. I am also new to this site.
  8. Consider Club Gascon, located within 3 minutes' walk of the Barbican Tube (1 stop away from Moorgate). There's a gastronomic restaurant where reservations are necessary, and an adjacent bar with informal tapas-like offerings. This restaurant focuses on Gascony products, including foie gras (which is offered in 5-10 different preparations, including sometimes as a dessert with a sauce made from violets). I recently had red grouse at the restaurant -- interesting too. Decent Gascony wine selection. Also, within 10 minutes' walk of Moorgate is 1 Lombard (1 Michelin star; reserve at gastronomic side). This restaurant within 2 minutes of the Bank tube. I would recommend Club Gascon over 1 Lombard, though.
  9. There are cheerful rooms with clean lines at Le Moulin de Lourmarin, no more than 1 1/2 hrs from Marseilles in Lourmarin. The cuisine of Edouard Loubet is appealing -- herbs culled from the fields of Provence; "forgotten" vegetables grown in some cases in his own gardens (yes, if you are wondering, he studied with Veyrat). The rooms are in an old olive mill, which also houses Loubet's vaulted dining room. In the summertime, the outside dining area surrounding an old, magestic (olive?) tree and protected in some cases by vines is an alternative. Another restaurant with rooms is Chez Bruno at Lorgues (3-5 rooms); very roughly about halfway between Nice and Marseilles. The place specializes in truffles. Late this summer, I had lunch there with the below menu at 650 FF for Truffes Melanosporum (price would have been a very reasonable 320 FF for summer truffles). Chou farci aux truffes, braise dans une sauce aux truffes (stuffed cabbage) La pomme de terre des montagnes cuite en robe des champs aux girolles et creme de truffes (potatoes) Foie gras avec des pommes vertes et des truffes, sauce aux truffes Le miel aux truffes (honey) Tarte tropezienne au leger parfum des iles (only non-truffled dish was dessert) The previous day, I had had lunch at Terre des Truffes in Nice (close to the opera house), which is also owned by Bruno: Le foie gras au torchon truffe a 10% a la Truffe Tuber Brumale, sa salade et son pain grille La Brouillade aux truffes tuber brumale et truffes de saison (velvety egg dish) La pomme de terre en robe des champs, a la creme de truffes et truffes de saison (potatoes) Ravioles de champignons de paris et foie gras, creme de cepes et truffes de saison La truffe en feuillete au foie gras, poitrine fumme, Tuber Melanosporum (truffe en croute with black truffle) Moelleux au chocolate, coeur de caramel aux Truffes Tuber Brumale; La tarte aux pommes, caramel de truffes; La creme glacee au caramel de truffes (shared) (chocolate, apple pie and ice cream, respectively, with caramelized truffle sauce).
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