October 9, 2006

Best Meal of My Life

The best meal of my life was part of one of the most enjoyable vacations I have ever been on. In March of 2006 I went to San Francisco to visit my friend Christine. It was a relaxing break, yet a fun place to visit.

On my last day there, we ventured to Napa and Sonoma Valleys and had lunch at The French Laundry in Yountville. Thank you Thomas Keller and crew for a fabulous afternoon of food! Some people go there for bragging rights, I went to experience some of the best food in the world. From where I was sitting I could here some of the things going on in the kitchen - it literally gave me goosebumps.

Christine and I decided to order different tasting menus so that we'd be able to enjoy 18 courses instead of nine. In the middle of lunch we were on a bit of a "high" and there was no wine or illegal substances involved. The meal was expensive, but worth every penny. I am really glad I got to share it with Chris though - another foodie and great friend.

Christine's Menu

cauliflower "Panna Cotta" with Beau Soliel Oyster Glaze and Russian Sevruga Caviar

Salad of Big Island Hearts of Peach Palm Haas Avocado, Cara Cara Orange "Confit", Bitter Orange "Coulis" and Young Cilantro

Sauteed Fillet of Pacific Kahala, French Laundry Garden Broccolini, "Piperade"
and Sweet Garlic Gastrique
"Saffron Vanilla" Main Lobster Tail "Cuite Sous Vide" with Wilted Arrowleaf Spinach and Saffron Vanilla Emulsion
Devil's Gulch Ranch "Jambonette de Lapin" with a "Cassoulet" of Spring Beans and a Whole Grain Mustard Sauce
Snake River Farm "Calotte de Beouf Grillee", Hen of the Woods Mushroom, Cipollini Onions, Fingerling Potato "Puree" with Watercress Leaves and "Mignonette Bourdelaise"
"Ossau Vielle" Glode Artichoke "Tapenade", Crispy "Panisse" and English Thyme "Vinaigrette"
White "Verjus Granite" with Nicoise olive "Nougatine"
"Feuillantine au Caramel" Butterscotch "Boite", Caramel Mousse and
Milk Chocolate-Praline "Feuillentine"

Danielle's Menu

"Puree" of Sweet Parsnip Soup, Granny Smith Apples and Madras Curry Mousse.

Salad of Melted Cipollini Onions, Grilled Baby Fennel, Wild Watercress Leaves and Saffron "Syrup"

Jidori Hen Egg "Omelette", Creamed Stinging Nettles and Forest Mushroom "Salpicon"

Yukon Gold Potato "Rissolee", Caramelized Spring Garlic, Marinated Sweet Peppers, Field Arugala and Nicoise Olive Oil

"Choufleur Servi En Deux Facons" , Celery Branch "Coulis", Cutting Celery Greens and Black Winter Truffle

"Carnaroli Risotto Biologico", with Preserved Myer Lemon, Shaved Marcona Almonds and Sacramento Delta Green Asparagus

"Valencay", Slow Baked Heirloom Beets, "Tardivo Radicchio" and Red Beet Essence

"Hot Chocolate", Jivara Milk Chocolate Sorbet, "Chocolat a la Venicoise", Tahitian Vanilla-Infused Marshmallows and "Creme Chantilly"

"Delice au Chocolat et Menthe", White and Dark Chocolate "Ganache", Garden Mint-Infused "Jaconde" and "Guanaja" Chocolate Sauce


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