World on a Plate

Exploring culture. One plate at a time.

Category: Menus

Per Se – 10.22.06

Tasting of Vegetables

PARSNIP-VANILLA SOUP

white wine poached bartlett pear with anise-hyssop leaves

"FRICASSE" OF BRAISED SALSIFY

glazed cipollini & pearl onions, young leeks, valencia orange "supremes" & "petite" mache  with "sauce malaise"

SALAD OF CARAMELIZED FALL SQUASH

butternut squash "millefeuille," "Panade aux quatre epices," brussels sprouts,

crispy sage & pomegranate reduction

"PANACHE D’ARTICHAUTS"

"confit of violet and globe artichokes, rainbow swiss chard ribs and nicoise olive "crouton" with armando manni "per me" extra virgin olive oil 2005 & aged balsamic vinegar

HERB ROASTED HEN-OF-THE-WOODS MUSHROOM

sunchoke "flan,"  Sunchoke "Chips and field mizuna

BLACK WINTER TRUFFLE "MACARONI & CHEESE"

"mezzi rigatoni" with cabot creamery’s aged cheddar, black winter truffles and "brioche" breadcrumbs

"CRESPELLA ALLA RICOTTA DI PECORA"

k&j orchard’s Chestnut "puree," golden purslane and chestnut-scented honey

APPLE CIDER SORBET

pumpkin "genoise" and custard with "gelee d’apfel cvee et confit de pommes"

GARDEN SWEET CARROT CAKE

cream cheese icing, indonesian cinnamon ice cream, candied pecans and black raisin "coulis"

"MIGNARDISES"

WINES

Gaja, Rossj – Bass, Piedmont, Langhe, 2005

Clos du Bourg, Vouvray, 2000

Paul Hobbs, Pinot Noir, Russian River, 2004

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Dining Notes: Dinner was with the King & Queen of Haute Cuisine, The Carters. It was our final dining experience and came after the close of the Gourmet Institute.  It was our way of celebrating a friendship that was born over Oaxacan street food and continues over 20-year old Balsamic vinegar.  As I wrote this up I am thinking that my, oh my aren’t there a lot of quotes on this menu everything is special and elevated and quite exceptionally elegant.  And yes, yes I did the vegetable tasting. There was just moreon that selection that fit my leanings and palate. I was not disappointed in any way. Also I had the best gin & tonic–Plymouth gin with house-made tonic.  Also not to mention the two kinds of butter–salted from a small dairy in Vermont and unsalted Strauss Dairy butter that accompanied the breads–the pretzel roll (which seems to be the pervasive choice in Manhattan these days) was–would be overlooking a detail.

Also, we received a tour of the pristine kitchen, so quiet, so ordered. The flat screen TV provided a window into dinner prepartions in Napa. Everyone in the kitchen was focused but calm. It was all very Zen. Chef Kellher, attended the Gourmet Institute that afternoon put was jetting off to Germany to accept an award.

Seriously, as the many calls I made attested, "if I died in my sleep that night I knew that I had experienced one of the best meals of my entire life.

                                                

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West Restaurant – Vancouver

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Amuse Bouche

First Course

Ravioli of Ricotta & Goats Cheese, Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Main Course

Wild Spring Salmon Mouginoise with Dungeness Crab and Leeks Parsley Pomme Puree

Dessert

Dark Chocolate Torte with Creme Caramel Ice Cream Rum Marinated Bananas and Sesame Florentine

Petit Fours

West has received accolades from Food & Wine ("one of the world’s hottest restaurants");  UK Sunday Independent ("ten of the best, worldwide") and a Mobile Four Star Award (look we don’t have Michelin ratings!).

The chef, David Hawksworth trained under Marco Pierre White.  The latter, if you’ve read Heat, had the young Mario Batali under his wing. He also apprenticed in the multi-leveled kitchens of Raymond Blanc at Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons in Oxford.  He’s young, well-trained and he knows how to pull it all together without being overly fussy. 

If you find yourself in the Vancouver neighborhood of South Granville you would be wise to make an early reservation at Ouest (West) as it is one of the best values to be found in Vancouver.  Until 6pm the fixed price meal is just $45.  And nothing is scrimped–not the service, the quality–just one memorable dining experience.

New Year’s Eve Dinner Menu

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            Blue_cheese_foam_w_port_reduction1    Meyer_lemon_pine_nut_tart2

Bacon & Eggs

Caviar & Blini

Citrus MarinatedBay Scallops w/ Herb Salad (blood orange & mango)

Tomato Sorbet with Mozzarella Soup & Tuile

Potato Ravioli with Shaved Truffle

Foie Gras with Rhubarb

Cabernet Sorbet with Shallot

Beef Tartar Spoon w/ Quail Egg on Brioche

Perail de Bribes with Frisee aux Lardon            

Blue Cheese Foam with Port Reduction

Meyer Lemon Pine Nut Tart with Mascapone Sorbet

Today’s post is more of a personal one.  A bit of a tribute to some out-of-town friends. The thing you need to know about the Carters is that they think they are foodies.  Really they are uber-foodies.  I met them, where else, on a cooking vaction to Oaxaca.  We ate grasshopers and drank beer together in the centrico. They do things I aspire to do when one is in a relationship.  No not having those deep, philosophical discussions over Italian espresso and the Sunday Times.  It’s more serious than that.  It’s to have someone in which to argue over what makes a better vacation–a cheese and wine tour of Italy or a going to Vegas to dine at six of the A-list restaurants.  She’s a trained chef with a passion for wine.  He’s a biotech marketer with Mexican mole muscle to spare.  What a combination–he breaks it down to understand, she cooks by the senses.  They have a little bit of me in both of them.  This is why we can have two hour long phone conversations on the machinations of Rick Bayless, the flaws of Flay, and the crisis taking place in home kitchens ("it’s a fundamental  breakdown in our culture that people aren’t cooking), to name a few.  I receive emails and voice mails along the lines of "ask your friend why the receipe on page 58 of the FL cookbook doesn’t work."  Yes, they actually cook from that book, who knew that the recipes were there to use. 

Last week’s conversation ran along the lines of "Don’t you think every home should have a foamer?" and "Jeanne, we bought a commercial ice cream maker. Really, it was just something that we should have done sooner. How else can you make tomato sorbet?"

In this conversation they regaled me with their New Year’s Eve dinner menu that they prepared for each other.  It was an affair that lasted all day and well into the night.  Needless to say there was a lot of wine, also.  The pictures, provided by the Carters, and the accompanying menu are from assorted cookbooks.  If you have questions regarding the menu just post them here. It’s an impressive meal from quite a pair of uber-foodies.