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Everything posted by mdibiaso

  1. An Italian place called Aquarello gets very high reviews from a person who really knows Italian food. Check out the link for a very detailed review. http://www.gastroville.com/archives/the_re...ope/000027.html
  2. In Sweden most women breast feed for about 9-12 months and that is the recommendation from health officials. What I see coming out is that countries where mothers need to get back to work quickly breast feeding is less common and short in duration. In the Nordic countries where most women stay home at least 1 year after child birth (with compensation from the government and full rights back to their old job!) children are breast fed longer. I think that convenience plays a big role. I would not be easy to keep breast feeding once one has gone back to work. And then the "society" norms and doctor recommendations are adjusted to fits what is possible for the woman to accomplish without undue complications and stress.
  3. I hate places that don't make it clear which is men and which is women. Cute things like having pictures of different sexed animals is just a pain to me and sorry I don't know the difference between a male and female giraffe. But the longest it took me to figure out which was which was in Stockholm a long time ago. Both doors were right next to each other and I could not for the life of me figure out which was which as I saw no difference (long before the days of same sex bathrooms. Finally after about 5 minutes I noticed the handles on each door where different, one was formed like a D (Damer/women) and the other an H (Herrar/Men). One place in Stockholm has a stall with two toilets in it for friends that want to talk while sitting and relieving themselves!
  4. Lxt Great post. I do think some of Senderens newer dishes are great but I wonder if any will ever match the Vanilla Lobster or Foie Gras in Cabbage. The reason for my thinking so is that when he created the older dishes he was unique in the world. Today many others are using exotic spices or matching luxury items with "poorer" items. This does not mean his newer dishes don't taste as good (in fact many of the wine combinations are better since he starts with the wine today not vice versa). It just means that his newer dishes lack the added "revolutionary" element. And you are so correct about how he used the spices in a minor key. In fact quite often today the spice is dusted on the side of the dish, not for visual effect, but to allow the diner to choose on their own their prefered level of spicing. This started with the foie gras and cabbage with the salt and peppar being served in small dishes on the side. In the end this is the big difference between Senderens and Gagnaire for me. Senderens has always had the diner and what he/she is tasting in focus. He wants the best overall taste including the matching with the wine for the diner. And his revolutions have had that as its goal, improve taste and the diners overall experience. Gagnaire has instead focused on revolution for its own sake and I believe for himself as a way to keep his interest at its peak. It has not had its focus on pleasing the diner. Unfortuately it seems that over time Gagnaire lack of concern for the diner has increased. Although I have not been there myself my guess is he is competing with El Bulli for the 3 star that gets the most uneaten food returned to the kitchen.
  5. The wine pairing are done by the restaurant and listed right on the menu. In fact, the wines are listed first than the the food that is recommended to eat with the wine. You can look at www.lucascarton.com
  6. Yes restaurants in Paris will still give guests menues without prices and some still make mistakes in knowing whether the male or female is paying. But I like the old world tradition if done correctly and in fact have had guests several times that I was happy did not see the prices as they may not have enjoyed the meal as much if they knew what it was costing! I do not actually remember what the lunch at Arpege cost, I paid cash and have no receipt but I do remember thinking it was a steal since just the caviar dish has a price of over 100Euro. I would say of the menu they served at least 400 Euros of food and I know the bill was no way near that much. In general all 4 restaurants had similar prices. No real difference in prices between entrees and mains with options from 45 to 120 Euro. Desserts around 25-20 euro. I found Arpege, and the other 3 as well, to be quite generous even watching others. Things like a lot of amuses, pre desserts and mignardise are standard at this level. And at Arpege and Lucas Carton when you order a glass of wine they will top it off several times for you. But Arpege does not have the selections by the glass that Lucas Carton does. In fact, I doubt any place in the world does!
  7. Wonderful thread. After having some great Comté, morels and Chat Chalon on a recent trip to Paris this hits straight home. Thanks.
  8. A 3 day 5 meal (4 of them 3 star) solo visit to Paris was something I have been looking forward to for some time. Last week was the week and here is the report. Lunch Day 1, Arpege: I arrive just after 12. Few tables are occupied but there is one other solo diner, a middle aged woman whom everyone in the staff greets with cheek kisses. She is obviously a regular and I am happy to see I am placed in the same part of the room as her, right by the kitchen door. One might have otherwise thought I was being given what the staff considers a lesser table. But I am right under a picture of Passard’s grandmother (judging from age I do not think it is his mother). After speaking with extremely helpful staff I am able to request that the chef simply cooks for me as he pleases. I was very happy to see throughout the meal that the staff was VERY friendly to me and all other guests since my last visit many years ago had seen something different. There was a lot of laughing and playful fun and it was obvious that many customers were regulars. Also, compared to other meals this one had a LARGE number of young French women, and some French men. All dressed very casually, several in jeans. An unusual crowd for a 3 star, but maybe something to do with it being lunch. But the room is NOT geared towards quiet dining. The guests are happy and having fun the doors to the kitchen swing open and close constant and you can even hear the pans banging and whisks working in the kitchen. This is surely an example that Michelin does NOT require a certain style of luxury in order to give 3 stars. But don’t be tricked the service itself is definitely 3 star. Shortly all but one table was occupied and the single women diner left after two small plates without getting any bill or paying anything. I guess she settles up once a month. God, I wish I was her! Amuses and bread. Bread is excellent thick slices from a country loaf with a very thick crust. The famous poached egg with sherry vinegar, maple sugar and chives arrives. The yolk is perfectly luke warm and running, the whites are more of a foam than boiled whites. And the dish is a statement with emphasis on Passard’s cooking style. Balances flavors and contrasting textures with a lot of focus on non luxury ingredients. The yolks and whites are totally different in texture and contrast each other perfectly. The flavoring balance of the vinegar and maple sugar is perfect, with each flavor coming thru clearing but neither taking over from the other and both there as a complement to the rich egg yolk. This dish deserves its reputation. Next was a vegetable bouillon with two small raviolis filled with mint and coriander. It is the dish of the meal. The bouillon is miraculous, just like a world class wine. Each spoonful presents new nuances of flavor and the aftertastes of each spoon is long, at least 30 seconds and ever changing. The two small raviolis offer two bursting mouthfuls of fresh bright flavors that totally contrast the depth of the bouillon and serve to refresh the mouth for more spoonfuls of pure bouillon. Onion gratin with parmesan and lime. Another winner. Served so hot you can hear it sizzle, the onions are very soft but not caramelized. They are lightly dusted with parmesan and the few drops of lime lighten the dish in an amazing manner. What sounds like a heavy dish is actual as light as a salad. And a perfect balancing of flavors using somewhat mundane ingredients. It is this style dish that are the best of the meal in my opinion. Vegetable velouté with bacon chantilly. The bacon cream is more like foam and spooned onto the hot velouté at the table. It puffs up like a soufflé when apply (another visual treat). The texture of the thick velouté and light foam blend perfectly in the mouth. The smoky flavors add even more depth to the multitude of vegetable flavor, including fresh beans, that comes through the velouté. Another huge winner. Can Passard keep this going forever?! Each dish has been so light, so I feel at this point like I could eat forever. The next dish, caviar and seminola is however not as good as the others. I am not a huge caviar lover, but the quality of the caviar seems very good. It is the matching seminola that I find misplaced. It is just too dry and tasteless to add anything to the caviar other than a reflection of the shape of small beads. Spinach, carrot mousse and orange peel offers a new style of dish. The three ingredients are separate on the place and separately nothing special. But as they represent three different base flavors, when mixed together they balance and enhance each other. Although the dish makes you think, I still prefer the dishes where Passard has already done the balancing. The next dish is however another huge winner, second best of the meal. A single scallop extremely lightly sautéed is served with grilled leek, grilled shallots and an onion citronelle puree. The scallop is an amazing specimen, extremely meaty in flavor, blowing away all myths that scallops are tasteless. The 3 different onions offer a full spectrum of flavors and the dish is perfectly spiced with acidity from vinegar to give the dish perfect balance. The meal had so far been like a symphony reaching a crescendo with the scallops. And I had reached a crescendo as well and was hoping we would now move to dessert. But more fish was to come, a sole filet of very high quality, again barely cooked with a parsley sauce. Excellent but I was just not hungry anymore. So when a roasted chicken dish came out I could barely touch it, and I did find it somewhat dry. I said at this point this was enough food as I feared the kitchen was just going to continue cooking until I said stop. They brought me some excellent cheese including an amazing 4 year old Comté from Bernard Antony who also supplies Lucas Carton. I told them I would not be able to make any desserts so they just brought out some jellies (including celery root which was delicious) and chocolates. All in all it was an amazing meal from a very talented chef. 2 of the courses, the sole and the scallop were not on the menu nor did I see them served to anyone else. So it really felt as if they were cooking just for me. And the quality of those ingredients were pristine so this was not a case of cleaning out the fridge, but rather one of the chef having some special things in his back pocket in case someone comes in and asks for them. There was two warm dishes more than I wished, and fatigue sat in but that was my fault for not saying stop after the scallop. Luckily I was only drinking water otherwise I do not think I would have been able to handle a dinner that same night. And if one does not drink wine the food prices are extremely reasonable. Great service, great food, maybe not the place for someone’s first 3 star if they are expecting more traditional atmosphere and cooking but an absolute must for anyone serious about learning from one of the leaders in modern French cooking today with a unique style that is very much his own. That same night, I somehow made it to my old standby Lucas Carton. It probably wasn’t fair to them to go there in such a state. I can not honestly say I had any desire to eat after lunch. But I was glad I went. Having written so much about Lucas Carton in the past I will keep this report rather short. Interesting points. There are currently 3 DIFFERENT Condrieau’s by the glass on the menu, one to amuses, one to entrees and one to mains. One could surely have a very interesting meal and learn a lot about French Condrieau’s but simply ordering these 3 wines/dishes. My entree was asparagus and morels served in two manners, stuffed and sautéed, together with a vin jeune, Château-Châlon 1997. The food was excellent, but my God what a wine. It is wines like this, by the glass, that make Lucas Carton unique and a winner for me. I am sure very few people would order a wine like this by the bottle at a restaurant and therefore never get to enjoy it with food cooked to perfectly match it. Everyone should however do this. Next was veal sweetbreads served with popcorn and Grüner Veltliner "Alte Reben" 1996 - W. Brundlmayer (one of two Grûner Veltliners available by the glass). The sweetbread had a perfectly crisp crust and the matching with the popcorn was ingenious and not just for show. Popcorn with its crispy and soft contrasts as well as salt/sweet contrasts turns out to perfectly mirror a crispy sweetbread. And the wine. It was a great wine when tasted before the food but grew 300% with the food. At Lucas Carton wine is always served before the food, I am sure so that one can compare the wine first on its own and then as it changed when served with the food. In this case, the wine developed a whole different level of fruit when served with the food without losing is strong mineral backbone. The was the dish/wine of the night. The next dish was very nice wild duck with a crispy skin served with mango and ginger. The wine, Clos de Vougeot "Vieilles Vignes" 1996, was however a bit of a disappointment. I prefer softer Bourgognes with big aromas. This was not in that style. But I must also say that after my lunch and the two dishes before this (both dishes were quite substantial in size and amount of flavors) I really was pushing my limit just trying to eat. Dessert was ordered but just too much for me to eat so I will not comment on it. Lucas Carton continues to be a place I love, the service is very friendly and well informed, for example telling me without asking that the morels were from Turkey and why (best the best morels come from there not from France!). And for single diners that love the chance to try unusual wines with extremely well thought out food matchings it is unique. In fact, it is usually that lesser known wines that shine at Lucas Carton. Even after dozens of meals here I have not tired in the least. The same cannot be said of my dinner the next day at Gagnaire. Lunch was light, a pristine plate of sushi at Isami at 4 QUAI D'ORLEANS just around the corner from Berthillion. I highly recommend the place if you are eating big dinners or love sushi. So I was ready to eat when I got to Gagnaire. But the amuses (about 10) and entree had just too many misses and attacked the palate with so many sweet or spicy flavors that the by the time the great lamb main course came I was just not able to eat much of it. And because it came in 5 different plates/versions, much of it was cold by the time I got around to eating it. Gagnaire it just trying to hard to impress. I saw a lot of people laughing in the full dining room at the number of plates they were served or the strange combinations. But I saw few oohing and aahing after putting their fork in their mouths. Misses for me were an amuse of raw shaved coconut and cauliflower that had nothing to offer than “hey they look the same”. A mushroom puree topped with fried clams, that was one of 5 amuses arriving at the same time and the one I was told to try 4th. The clams were cold and soggy by the time I got to them. They paled compared to the fried clams I used to get at Revere Beach outside of Boston when I was a kid. And this is a said statement. A turnip and egg amuse was wrapped in a turnip slice that was almost impossible to chew. My entree, a veal, foie gras and ham terrine was so cold from the refrigerator that it was almost tasteless. The Japanese “pearls” served with it were totally tasteless and had no business on the plate except to impress with a strange ingredient, and the artichoke bouillon served with it was one dimensional and bland and a travesty compared to the bouillon I had had the day before at Arpege. Why Gagnaire just can’t cut down on the number of plates, and when serving lamb in so many styles at least do it in two different servings in order to build some progression and allow the food to be eaten warm is beyond me? When he gets it right the food is phenomenal (and it often classic prepared like long stewed lamb leg topped with puff pastry that is best). But when 9 out of 10 is mediocre or just plain bad, and your palate is worn out from all the sweets and spices half way through the evening, those few moments of bliss are just not worth the bother. But awards to the serving staff. It is amazing the amount of work they manage today. Being the dishwasher here must be punishment for misbehaving in Hell. My last meal was lunch the 3rd day at L’Ambroisie. A friend had helped with an introduction so that service team of Pascal Vetaux and Pierre Lemoullac took great care of me, choosing dishes and wines for me. The amuse, a traditional cheese gorge set the tone. Perfectly executing cooking with great respect for the ingredients and nothing on the plate that does not have a reason to be there (Gagnaire should stage here for a month and try to learn something). Pacaud the chef at L’Ambroisie like Senderens at Lucas Carton does not believe in multicourse marathons. Here and at Lucas Carton you eat 3 to 4 plates, each of substantial size to give you a chance to truly enjoy and understand each dish. If Senderens approach can be summarized as finding perfect matches of food and wine, Pacaud’s can be summarized as putting one ingredient in the center and surrounding it with a few tones that enhance the main ingredient’s inherent flavors. As a small amuse foie gras terrine is served that has a “skin” of spices that looks thicker than those on an Italian salami and paired with a confit of cabbage root and green apple. What a shock when tasting it that the spices are so mild and understated, just accenting the perfect foie gras. How this is done is beyond me, but I am as happy as a pig in heaven that it is done. The apple and cabbage root confit provide a sweet, sour, mineral contrast that enhances the richness of the liver. First dish is the famous langoustine with sesame wafer and curry sauce. The langoustine are barely cooked and of such perfect quality that I ooh and ahh with every bite. The spicing is again very subtle, there to enhance not detract or cover up the main ingredient. A perfect dish in every sense The fish course is a St Pierre with a shallot marmalade and artichokes and fennel. The fish sits separate on the plate and is perfectly cooked and of amazing quality. I could just it this fish without any of the other parts of the dish. But that would be a shame, because the rest of the plate is a first class trip to Provence. Perfect textures, perfect flavor balances with just the right amount of acidity and the killer. A small twig a marjoram. Some may have just pushed this aside thinking it was garnish. But I could see just by the way it looked (as if it had been picked less than 10 seconds early at the height of maturity) and the fact that I could smell it even though it was only 1 inch long that this was an integral part of the plate. With each bite a small leave was removed and added. The herb simply exploded with freshness and flavor, lightening and enhancing the whole dish to amazing levels. This was the work of a genius. The final dish was a braised veal sweetbread with morels. The dish was extremely good but a few years ago I had the single best dish of my life at L’Ambroisie, a crispy sweetbread with an orange crust. I just could not help comparing this dish to that one and the excellent sweetbread at Lucas Carton two nights earlier and this was not as good. And I was again getting overwhelmed by all the food I had had the past 3 days. A light sorbet woke me back up for the grand finale. An assortment of desserts. An absolutely perfect chocolate tarte that is at one and the same time amazing rich and amazing light, served with a vanilla ice cream with 2 miles deep flavor. Strawberries are a winner at L’Ambroisie I have learned in the past, but I was sceptical that they would be so good so early in the season. But these, Gariguette’s were perfectly ripe and served in two different ways warm with lemon on the side of a hazelnut pastry, and in a cold soup with black currents. The final dish was a fresh cheese with sautéed rhubarbs. A tremendous meal that taught me a lot about having respect for ingredients and letting them speak for themselves rather than being drowned with other parts of the dish. And the service was so friendly and gentlemenly that you would have never thought possible today. The staff in the dining room has the same respect for their guests as the kitchen has for the ingredients. And here are definitely coming into someone’s home and should approach it in that manner, with respect and joy and a goal to give to each other. Overall on the trip it became clear to me that Passard, Senderens and Pacaud are all three delivering world class yet totally different experiences each with first class service albeit also of different styles. A key to dining at these places is to talk with the management and let them know that you are looking for something special. Do some research in advance so you can discuss your expections, likes and dislikes. Maybe even take the old world approach and write a letter by hand a few weeks before arriving. Approached in the right manner these service professionals will stop short of nothing to make you feel at home. Also it was clear after my 5th meal at Gagnaire that I will not be returning for quite some time. It is just too frustrating an experience. And next time I will never eat so many meals of this type in such a short time. In fact, I would suggest that one meal like this every other day is another. And on the in between days one can explore all the other wonderful food offerings that Paris has.
  9. Do your parents understand that the real live long education you got from your time in Paris had nothing to do with the University? Kudos to your parents for letting you go and kudos to you for putting your free time to such valuable use. You and your friend from the Riviera are two of my favorite posters (knowledge, generosity, patience and never a flame) on these various boards. And to have sampled Robuchons cuisine for so many years! What a pleasure it must have been. I have never been able to get to Paris that often and tried for years to get to Robochon and finally succeeded to get a lunch reservation for the Friday in July before he closed (and I called in January and could not get dinner). Needless to say I was not ready in my dining experience to truly value the meal and I will always regret never having had the chance to get to know his cooking better. But I can say I learn one thing from the lunch. I pushed the sommellier to give us some wine other than Bordeaux or Bourgogne and he suggested a white Hermitage. Still today white Hermitage is one of my favorites and probably the single white wine I can most easily pick out in a blind tasting. Thanks for your post that has brought many found memories of my younger years back to me.
  10. You may want to consider Le Bristol a 2 star with beautiful rooms (one winter one summer) and cooking that is modern but not out in left field. The website should show what the lunch menu serves and costs. http://www.hotel-bristol.com/
  11. Which did you prefer more, Lucas Carton or Gagnaire? These are quite different style restaurant in the food they serve and atmosphere. Knowing which you liked best and why will help in giving recommendations for your next visit.
  12. You can have a very good three star experience at with the prefixe lunch at Lucas Carton for under 100Euro a head for food. Check their website www.lucascarton.com for a current menu in a few weeks when they reopen.
  13. There is a well hidden place in the old town that has very good food. Went there in both 2002 and 2003. The main courses were better in 2003 but the meze are still the best choices. here is link to a write up on another board. http://www.chowhound.com/boards/intl4/messages/14208.html
  14. My wife and I had a wonderful meal this week to celebrate our 13th wedding anniversary at Lux in Stockholm. Lux has been open for about 2 years and has been a hit. It was completely full on a Tuesday night in July which surprised me. So it is still a hit. And for good reason. First, Lux does not stand for luxury. It is called Lux because it is in the old employee cafeteria at the original Electrolux headquarters (yeah, those vacuum cleaner people). Well the headquarters have been moved and the employee cafeteria has been upgraded quite a bit for food and interior. Very Scandinavian interior. Light woods and colors, with a view of the water. The restaurant is outside the city in what is otherwise sort of a barren wasteland. It is hard to find even with directions, so just take a taxi. Only 10 minutes and about 15 USD from the city center. When the weather is good, which it was not this night (nor any night this summer it seems) you can sit outside. The food is Swedish with French influences and extremely reasonably priced for cooking at this level in Sweden (they have 1 Michelin star). First courses and entrees are each about 10 - 15 USD lower priced than similar places in the city. First courses run about 20 USD and entrees about 30-35. Dessert about 18 USD. The amuse was a cold pea soup with cava that really captured the essense of the peas. Served with a toast about the size and thickness of a dime with some cream and bleak roe. Three types of bread, dark with nuts, Swedish crisp bread made from buckwheat, and a sour dour are served and refilled throughout the first two courses. The dark was the winner, the sour dow lacked the crispy crust I prefer. We opted for the ala carte opposed to the tasting menu. We started with lightly smoked salmon topped with muscavado sugar served with a mustard sauce and potato puree. The salmon was perfect (basically raw and probably only smoked for 2-3 minutes) and the muscavado brought it some additional depth. The mustard sauce was lighter and fresher than the standard mustard sauce served with smoked salmon. The potato puree was more of a sauce and somewhat out of place, but an interest example of how far from a standard potato in texture you can get. A piece of artichoke was also out of context. But overall a great modern version of Swedish classic that I will try to recreate a home. Basically every Swedish cuisine restaurant in the country will have a smoked salmon on the menu as an entree. 99.9% are industrial made and while ok not really worth revisiting if you live here. This was proof how good this can be when made on site and with some thought behind the flavorings. The main was citrus baked char (perfectly "under" done) with a classic white wine, butter, fish stock sauce that was absolutely sensational. The add-on, fresh beets and sorrel, fit in perfectly here. The sauce was poured at the table. Here again was a potato puree, more traditional in texture and taste, that was perfect with the fish and sauce. We drank a marvelous 86 Delemotte Blanc de Blanc Mesnil with these courses that matched the food very well. Otherwise this is a recommended wine by the glass to each course. We then opted for a cheese course. It was 5 cheeses, 3 small glasses of wine, two fresh fruit compotes, (fig and gooseberry) toasted caraway bread and a salad with truffle dressing. The cheeses included a perfect Roblochon (spelling?), a Swedish goat cheese, Beaufort, blue cheese and a Spanish queso. The wines were a dry Gewurtz, a tawny port and a sauterne. There was also an explanation of what to try with what. All in all a nice cheese course for 45 USD including the wine. I finished with simple ice cream (chocolate, yoghurt, vanilla and raspberry were the flavors of the day). My wife has wonderful rhubarb dish with cardamom creme. The service was so-so. We had a waitress that had a little of an attitude and the courses came very quickly at first (apps came before the amuse had been cleared) and at the end of the meal, when the place had filled it took 35 minutes to get our dessert. But besides our main waitress all the other staff seemed very friendly. There was some nice extras. A bowl of fresh cherries was put on the table after the main course and we each got a home made strawberry popsicle dipped in dark chocolate with the check. Other extras, like small cookies or chocolates were on the menu for a price, but a very reasonable one. And if that is what it takes to keep prices 25% below the city 10 minutes away, it is worth it. All and all we were very happy and would STRONGLY recommend Lux to people visiting Stockholm that want to try first class, modern, and reasonably priced Swedish cuisine without too many influences or ingredients from other countries. The website can be found at http://www.luxstockholm.com/asp/lux.asp?id=168&uid=030200
  15. Here is the recipe in English for Vanilla buns: http://www.algonet.se/~gabor/kokbok/EnVanillaBuns.htm and here it is in Swedish the name being vaniljbullar http://www.algonet.se/~gabor/kokbok/SvBullar.htm You can replace the 2 tsp of vanilla sugar with 1 tsp vanilla extract. Or make your own vanilla sugar. Get a vanilla bean, scrape it out (using the insides for another recipe), cut up the remain bean into 2 inch strips. Mix the strips with 1 cup of powdered sugar and let sit in an airtight container for at least 1 week before using. Will hold forever, and you can always add more sugar over time and fresh strips of bean shells. Lycka till (Good luck)
  16. I was there from 79-84. That explains our different experiences. When I was there the only thing worth spending money on at Elsie's was Space Invaders and eventually that got removed too.
  17. mdibiaso


    I have been to L'ambrosie twice. The food can be extremely good, even compared to other 3 stars. The best single course I have had in my life was a sweetbread with a crunchy orange crust. The languostine is also extremely good. A chocolate dessert my wife had with several variation on chocolate was also extremely good. And the food is generous. Huge pieces of languostine, a course my wife had with morels came with about 40 whole morels!!! But there are down sides. The service seems somewhat "funeral" like as a previous writer described the surroundings. The wine service and recommendations are not inspired (Burgundy and Bordeaux with no extra though or effort in my opinion). But Pacaud has been quoted as saying it takes several visits for customers to learn his restaurant and for the restaurant to get to know the customers. He is obviously a perfectionist. So I can say I would like to go back a few more times, but I hope that he gets some better staff in the room, particularly the sommerlier. But if you go and see sweetbreads with orange do not hesitate a millisecond to order if if you like sweetbreads. It was simple magnificent
  18. Being a student most meals before 8 PM were skipped or taken in the student dining halls with one big payment per year for all the meals whether you ate them or not. Those were really bad as well. But you could always laugh when the vegetarian option of the day was "meatless chile con carne". The food hall staff that were Spanish and Portuguese speakers must have had a great laugh for years on their more "intellectual" managers that made the menus! But when I had to spend "extra" out of the pocket money on food Cafe Aventura (decent thin slice pizza, all other pizzas in the area were a joke) in what was a small mall on Dunster Street or Bartley's burger was the place for me. Come on, you cannot really compare a burger at Bartleys with an Elsie burger. And even if Bartleys reeked of grill smoke it was more appetizing than the hygienical challenged surroundings in staff at Elsie's. And God, the staff at both Elsie’s and Tommy were totally rude to anyone under 25. Locke Ober was the place once every year to 18 months for a special meal when family was in town and I wasn't paying. Even though I was never short of beer money (I worked nights 30 hours a week) it always seemed crazy to pay a lot of money for food knowing what I was already paying per year for the free pass to the student dining room. They should have given us free beer instead and let us cook in the rooms (which was a total "no-no").
  19. This was very helpful to me too. I am going back to Cambridge this summer and it is 20 years since I was last there. All I can say is that it is good news that Elsies, Tommy's Lunch and the Wursthaus are gone. I frequented the first two for pinball machines and late night food after lots of beer. And I worked at the Wursthaus for a while (health and labor officials should have closed it down years ago, only placed I ever worked as a bartender where the waitresses were not allowed to share tips with the bartenders even through 95% of the drinks we poured and beers we opened where for table not bar customers, I stopped showing up for work when I did not get the Harvard/Yale football game weekend off even though I requested it 1 month in advance ). The fact that all 3 survived for so long is proof that getting into Harvard is no proof of your intelligence. (goes for me as well, I feel much of my intelligence came long after my 4 years in Cambridge). PS when I was there the best food around was Locke Ober's, but there seating policy for women was from the middle ages. But god, the Lobster Therimador
  20. I have hear of him writing to people in the past, for example 9/11. This guy is a class act. More people like him on both sides of the pond, not matter what the industry, and the world would be a better place.
  21. This list just above is very comprehensive and up to date. I would personally be careful of some of the older post (Martin Trotzig has gone from good for local to turist trap that has to put ads in the paper every week to get people in the door). Other hots new spots are Lux in the old Electrolux headquarters and Mistral, but Mistral will be impossible to get into. I called in early May and they wear fully booked thru the end of July and a few weeks into August when the reopen! Pontus in the Green House has a summer restaurant, Brasserie by the Sea that gets great reviews and has great views. Vassa Eggen is also a great place that has been around for about 4 years and has more experimental cooking. Just saw you will be here in July. July most places will be closed unless they are a summer restaurant like Brasserie by the Sea. Ulla Winblad will be open since it is in a turist areas. Get the Swedish meatballs, best in the country. Villa Källhagen may also be open since it is part of a hotel. They are best known for brunch on the weekends. Otherwise most good places are closed in July and many that stay open do not have the normal staff cooking or serving so your meal could be quite different from the normal one making recommendations iffy. You are coming at the wrong time for food, but the right time for weather...
  22. Thanks for the tips. Since it seems that this wine is in no rush to drink and is more of a winter wine than a summer wine I think I will wait to open it until the next time we are having a moose roast. Hell I live in Sweden where we can see mooses running down the street!
  23. I have a bottle of Dal Forno Romano Amarone. I have only had Amarone once before so I was hoping some of you experts could help me with two questions. 1) Should I decant it and let it breath if so how long? 2) What are some good foods to serve it with? Thanks in advance.
  24. mdibiaso

    Wines of the Century

    How do you get an invitation to such an event. Is it first come first serve. It there an advertisement for it anywhere on the web?
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