Tag Archives: foie gras

Le Bernardin

3 Jun

It’s been months since I last posted, but I did not have much to live for let alone write for.  Recently, Blister, the doctor, recommended that I eliminate all seafood, dairy, gluten, fruit, and nuts from my diet due to my severe allergies.  For weeks, I suffered.  After a recent visit to my allergist, she finally set me free and advised that elimination diets create super allergies.  Yes, Avengers allergies.  Blister the saboteur.  When I informed her of my allergist’s medical opinion, she just laughed and said, “I helped you lose five pounds, didn’t I?”  Blister, the cause of my demise and BDD.

Due to my unreasonable diet, the thought of writing about food killed me.  Now that I can eat again, let’s discuss New York.  Years ago during my freshman year in college, I went to New York to visit some friends.  It was my first trip to New York as an adult, and I was excited.  A bag, a bus ticket, a few girlfriends, and a lot of spontaneity led us to a weekend in New York.  As soon as we arrived, we realized spontaneity was slightly overrated.  There were three 18 year old girls without accommodations in a big, scary city.  In our minds, the nights would be full of so much partying that making reservations of any kind seemed futile.  But once the parties , after parties, and after after parties were over, we were homeless with no where to go.  Luckily, a friend who resided in the NYU dorms, snuck us in to the study rooms where we slept like squatters.  We slept under the desks and used the chairs as camouflage. We lacked blankets, showers, and pajamas, and used our one bag filled with hoochie mama disposable tops as a make-shift pillow.

Fast-forward 13 years.  Still filled with the same excitement and girlfriends in tote, we were on our way to New York City again.  This time, we had hotel reservations at … the Waldorf Astoria.  As we walked to our room, I noticed this.

Ooooooh sheeit.

The foyer.

The living room.

The view from the living room.

The formal dining room.

The kitchen.

The master bedroom.

The second bedroom.

The third bedroom.

As I walked around this palace fit for a Zamunda King, I imagined how many homeless 18 year old girls could sleep in this place.   Like Papi Chula said, “Sisters are doin’ it for themselves.”  And we were.  Not only did we have showers, but we had an unlimited supply of Ferragamo shampoo, conditioner, and soap.  As hard as it was to leave this mansion, we had to go to Le Bernardin for Blister’s birthday dinner especially since a significant deposit was required just to secure the reservation.

Amuse bouche

I’m not usually a fan of sea urchin, but as of late I have grown fond of it. I’m especially fond of it when it’s topped with salty caviar, a wonderful way to wake the taste buds.

Caviar-Wagyu

For my “Almost Raw” starter, the blend of Nebraska wagyu beef and langoustine topped with a generous layer of caviar was worth the $45 supplemental charge.  The pepper Vodka crème fraîche fills in the chewy bites of tartare for a creamy well-rounded bite.  Instead of layering the tartare on the provided “Ruffles” potato chips, I preferred smothering the delicious blend on the warm bread that regularly circulated throughout the night.

Because Blister and I are geniuses, we ordered different dishes and shared them to try more of the items offered by the silver fox Eric Ripert. She ordered the tuna– layers of thinly pounded yellowfin tuna, foie gras, toasted baguette, chives, and olive oil.

The tuna was a vibrant orange and beautiful to look at, but it was mediocre in taste.  It tasted like tuna and the foie gras had a pasty consistency that did not seduce me like foie gras usually does.  The wagyu kicked the tuna’s ass.

I ordered the langoustine for the “Barely Touched” second course.

The langoustine was perfectly seared and succulent.  I always face a dilemma when it comes to fleshy shellfish.  On one hand, I want to pop the entire morsel of succulent meat into my mouth.  On the other hand, it’s so delicious that it should be slowly savored.  Lucky for me, Mr. Ripert gave me two.  One to slowly savor with small bites and the other to completely devour with my eyes closed.

I also enjoyed Miggy’s Sea Medley.

A beautiful display of the ocean’s gifts in one small little package, but the best part of this national treasure is the smoked bonito broth.  It is the perfect warm temperature touched with a hint of uni and caviar.  When I die, I imagine God welcoming me into the gates of heaven with a cup of this smoked bonito broth.

For my third “Lightly Cooked” dish, I asked the waiter for the fish that the contestants on Top Chef had to replicate seasons ago.  The waiter had no idea what episode I was talking about and brought other waiters for further investigation.  They caucused and agreed it was Mr. Ripert’s striped bass.

The top layer of skin was not crispy enough.  After watching that Top Chef episode, I was expecting a  super crispy and flaky top layer.  The fish itself was perfectly cooked, but I did not like the black-garlic Persian lemon sauce.  It had a sharp bitter flavor that I could not identify but it tasted like star-anise’s cousin.  I would have enjoyed this dish more if the black-garlic sauce was substituted with the smoked bonito broth.  In fact, just pour that broth over everything.

For dessert, I ordered the apple-cinnamon which consisted of cinnamon caramel cream, green apple foam, candied walnut, and red wine caramel.

I took off its hat and found this:

It tasted like a modern apple pie.  The “hat” was crunchy and light, and the sauces swirled to make the most perfect bite of apple pie.  Even though I hate foam, it really worked in this sweet treat.  Ending this three-hour meal with apple pie and a hot cappuccino was the cherry on top.  Of course, I had to instruct the waiter to add the splenda before the cappuccino foam … a first for the barista according to the waiter.  I hate when the splenda gets caught in the foam and not in the cappuccino.

I was so full that I could not even touch the after dinner freebies.

I understand why Le Bernardin is ranked 19th best restaurant in the world.  It is definitely two whole Michelin stars greater and better than Providence and Melisse.  Although I no longer will rank restaurants on vacation due to my tendency to love everything because I’m on vacation, anyone who enjoys seafood should pay the proper deposit, make a reservation, and enjoy.

Blister loved her birthday dinner, company, and conversations of placenta, daddy dicks, and your usual girl talk.

Le Bernardin
The Equitable Building
155 W 51st St
New York, NY

 

Providence

11 Mar

Last year for annual mistress day, Bubby took me to Melisse. And if you remember, Melisse did not deliver the 2 Michelin stars as advertised. This year, Bubby took me to Providence– the other LA restaurant with 2 Michelin stars. I’ve heard wonderful things about Providence, except that contrary cunt Nibs was the only person who didn’t rave about the food.

SPOTTED: Rich, older lonely boys and the young gold diggers who love them. (Can you tell I just watched a marathon of Gossip Girl recently?) I tried to look for wedding rings on the fingers of both parties and spotted none. Bubby and I tried to discretely turn our backs 180 degrees just to find our favorite couples. Note to self, twisting at that exaggerated angle is never discreet.

Bubby enjoyed a beer while I enjoyed a glass of a delicious medley of juices including lychee, guava, passion fruit, and other exotic treasures that the bartender could muster. It was as delicious as the welcome juice given to the guests at Phuket’s Dusit Laguna Hotel — the most delicious standard for all juices.

This juice was so refreshing but cost more than Bubby’s beer.  Seven dollars of juice.

The amuse bouche

The spoon on the left was a yellow egg-yolk-like version of a screwdriver.  Refreshing and a nice burst of cold alcohol in your mouth.  The square jello on the right was a mojito.  The screwdriver was definitely better than the mojito.

The second amuse bouche

This trio was not as good as the first amuse bouche.  Sipping a luke warm soup from a straw is not a great way of starting a marathon of courses.  I hoped this was not an accurate representation of what was to come.

The bacon brioche

Bubby ate like 8 of these. He described them as bite size wonders that tasted like Jack in the Box’s sourdough jack burgers. He doesn’t even love bacon as much as I do, and he couldn’t get enough of these. I even caught him checking out the size of my purse to see how many miniature wonders I could confiscate safely from the premises. Unfortunately, I carried my small clutch.

Tai snapper sashimi, sake, caviar, salted cherry blossom

The sashimi was fresh and tasted more like yellowtail than snapper. It lacked that chewy consistency that sometimes accompanies snapper sashimi. The snapper’s texture was soft and the caviar, salty. There was a gelatinous layer that I didn’t even mind. In fact, I liked it. But I really loved the yellow rice cracker balls that added the perfect crunch.

Santa Barbara spot prawns, nori bread crumbs, spring herbs

That prawn looks like it’s on roids. It was perfectly cooked and succulent. I did not care for the random herbs, the bread crumbs, or the cat spit foam. In fact, I hate cat spit.  Why do these upscale restaurants find the need to add cat spit? Stop with the cat spit!  It’s not creative, and it’s no longer cool. But most importantly, it looks like the bile that Miso vomits.

Main lobster, charcoal grilled, smoked black truffle butter

This dish looks like Valentine’s Day. The arrangement of the lobster, the colors of my wedding, is perfection. And it tasted the way it looked. Thick pieces of fresh lobster made me want to cry like Homer did when he ate Pinchy.

I, too, felt that I loved Pinchy the most and should respect him by eating him all by myself. Piiiiiiiinchy!!!!!!!

Foie gras ravioli – a la carte

We ordered this dish separately because of the amazing reviews. Also, I’m trying to eat as much foie gras possible before they ban it in California in July. The waiter even recommended making reservations for a foie gras exclusive menu. I’m seriously considering arranging a small dinner party called a Farewell to Foie Gras. These raviolis made me want to cry.  It was like looking at a boyfriend knowing that it won’t last.  It’s so hard to say goodbye to yesterday…. Boyz II Men.

The pasta was perfectly thin, the foie gras rich and decadent.  I will have to cross some state lines to get my foie gras kick.  Trust.

Wild New Zealand john dory, foie gras, white port, spring vegetables

By the time we reached this course, I was busting out of my skirt.  The courses were separated by 15 minutes, and it only takes 7 minutes for my stomach to tell my brain, “Bitch, you full.”  I was fighting the good fight, and I had to have a bite of each dish.  The john dory was tender and flavorful, and I really enjoyed the crispy and crunchy skin.  I really regretted wasting stomach space on the amuse bouche trio.  Rookie mistake.

Duck breast, petit pois, pea greens

I love duck.  One of the perks of marrying a Chinese man is having Peking duck on the regular.  I literally sing my song of joy when the Chinese waiter brings that huge plate of crispy duck and its soft pillow friends.  It is on point just like the duck at Providence.  The duck at Providence melts in your mouth.  It felt like buttered bread that melts on your tongue.  I had to chew like three times before it was ready to be swallowed.  And to seal the deal, the fried ball of foie gras.

I love fried balls of anything, but fried balls of foie gras takes the cake.

Fennel, yellow chartreuse, Angelica root, yogurt

The yogurt was enjoyable and provided a great palate cleanser.  The plate in its entirety was just okay.

Chocolate surprise

The Valentine’s day menu included a dessert that was basically chocolate served with chocolate.  Earlier in the meal, I told our waiter that I wasn’t a fan of chocolate, so he brought me a special dessert that was completely chocolate free.

My surprise dessert

This plate of heaven was more than I could ask for with ice cream, meringue, and hints of lemon.  The fact that they substituted the chocolate madness with the perfect treat for me, I couldn’t be happier.  Well played, Providence.  Well played.

Our farewell treat

I left this box as is.  I could not eat another bite.  Bubby had to roll my fat ass out of that restaurant at 11:30 p.m.  Yes, the entire dinner took longer than 3 hours.  I was feeling a mix of emotions … full, sleepy, tired, happy, drunk with food.

Providence is exponentially better than Melisse.  I could also tell the difference of an All Star Chef and Top Chef based on my experience at Ink recently (review soon to come). If it wasn’t for the liberal use of cat spit, I would have given Providence a perfect rating.

Providence
5955 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA

Animal

12 Oct

I love this restaurant because it reminds me of Umfufu from Eddie Murphy’s Raw, “I don’t like the way you treat me, Eddie.  You treat me like animal!”

Oh, Eddie Murphy.  I miss the 80’s when you wore leather suits, laughed maniacally, and made people laugh.  What happened, Eddie?  I used to watch Coming to America every Saturday.  At the young age of 8, I would bark like a dog while hopping on one foot and randomly say, “The royal penis is clean, your highness.”  I think that was my first ever dong joke.  So proud.  Oh, Eddie.  I learned so much from you and Arsenio.  And the both of you abandoned me at such an impressionable age.  Luckily, there was Martin Lawrence’s You So Crazy, Chris Rock’s Bigger and Blacker and a few years of Dave Chappelle.  But Eddie, we all know you’re a father and want to make wholesome movies but don’t resist.  Come back.  Be funny again.  “EDDDDDIEE….WHAT HAVE YOU DONE FOR ME LATELY!”

I decided to take my Umfufu, Bubby, to Animal.  He always says I go to the best restaurants without him.  We dressed up and went on a date.  I’m usually not one to dress up on a weekend, but I just got my hair ombre dyed, so I didn’t want to waste a perfect blow out.  Umfufu said my hair makes me look like a “loose” woman while Blister said I look like I didn’t go to college.  Score!  I never want to hear anyone tell me that I look like I have a graduate degree  because that means you fugly. Perhaps I’ll upload a picture of my new slutty hair.

We went to Animal on a Saturday night at 9 pm so we got a table rather quickly.  I ordered a few staples like the foie gras loco moco, chili and lime fried pig ears, and the pork belly sliders.  Umfufu was skeptical about the sliders but he let me order it anyway.  He also ordered the bone marrow, a dish I have yet to try.

Pig ears

I forgot to take the picture of this dish when it first arrived.  But there was a beautiful fried egg on top that I mixed all up with the pig ears.  I love any dish that’s spicy and acidic.  Add pork? Even better.  I like the crunchiness of the ears.  The lime and spice are just as good and the savory fried egg with running yolk makes an excellent sauce.  I ate this all by myself because Umfufu was not a fan.

Bone Marrow

The buttery marrow is draped with chimichurri and sweet grilled onions.  Spreading this all over garlic toast was fan-fucking-tastic.  I wanted to lick the marrow  up and down like the 90’s Silk “Freak Me” song, “Lemme lick you up and down … til you say stop! Lemme play with your marrow baby make it real hot.”  It was erotic.

Foie Gras Loco Moco

I love me some loco moco.  The best thing about Hawaii is the unlimited supply of loco moco, mac salad, spam musubi, and the glorious beaches.  But most definitely, the loco moco.  At first, I judged this bougie version of the loco moco.  Loco moco is the food of the people, it shouldn’t be served with foie gras and a quail egg, right?  Oh so wrong.  When in doubt, add foie gras and quail eggs to everything.  The foie gras was thick and added a fatty quality to a dish that’s already drizzled with gravy.  But fat is fat.  And it is good.

Pork Belly Sliders

Everyone knows by now how much I fantasize about pork belly.  What Umfufu didn’t realize was how much he loved pork belly, especially these pork belly sliders.  The bread is what makes these fucking things so amazing.  Yes, the pork fat is awesome, but the bread.  It’s like … the fresh baked bread from a Hong Kong bakery: sweet, fluffy, light, warm, and buttery.  The crunchiness from the slaw slathered in bbq sauce was just beautiful.  Umfufu wanted to order 5 servings of these, and he probably will one day because he slow clapped this dish in the middle of the restaurant.

Animal gets 4 slow claps out of 5.  Umfufu says the sliders deserve 5.

Animal
435 N Fairfax Ave
Los Angeles, CA

Mélisse

15 Feb

I hate Valentine’s day.  I love the day, but I hate dining out on the day.  Several years ago on a Valentine’s day, Bubby took me to Michael Mina in San Francisco.  I love Michael Mina.  The food was incredible at the Michael Mina in Las Vegas, so I was extremely excited to try the Michael Mina in San Francisco for Valentine’s day.  When we got to the restaurant, the tables were so closely placed, that the couple next to us was basically sitting on our laps.  I understand restaurants are trying to seat as many tables for their overly priced prix fixe menu but this was absurd.  But for some delicious food, I don’t even mind having another couple sit on our laps.  The main reason I hate dining out on Valentine’s day is because I cannot stand the lovey dovey couples making out at dinner.  It’s inappropriate and makes me lose my appetite.  I understand it’s the day of love and a little bit of hand holding and public displays of affection are the norm.  But if you are sitting side by side with your legs weaved together and making out, I hate you.  (Side Note: I love asking couples how they sit at a table in a restaurant.  If couples sit side by side, the man is into the woman’s body.  If couples sit across from each other, he’s into her mind.  If she sits on his lap, they’re just horny.)

So for Valentine’s day, I love going out on February 13, National Mistress Day.  February 13 is National Mistress Day because everyone has to celebrate Valentine’s day with their husbands and wives.  Since the actual day is reserved for legitimate partners, February 13 is the next best thing for adulterers.  I love going out on this day because I love to judge all the adulterers.  It’s like being in a live version of a telenovela.  I’m also praying that one day, an angry wife will storm into the restaurant and catch her adulterous husband feeding black truffles and caviar to his mistress.  Hasn’t happened yet, but it will.

For our mistress meal, Bubby took me to Mélisse –one of the two restaurants in LA with 2 Michelin stars.  The other being Providence.  The Michelin ranking system is that one star indicates a “very good cuisine in its category”, a two-star ranking represents “excellent cuisine, worth a detour,” and three stars are awarded to restaurants offering “exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey”.  I don’t give Michelin stars much thought because they are not alway accurate.

Our meal took two hours.  The service was slow and the wait time between courses took a long time.  I think the restaurant wanted us to enjoy the moment but I just got really sleepy.  The bread man finally arrived and provided an array of breads including olive, sourdough, dinner roll, brioche, among others.  Bubby loved the brioche.  He ate like 5 of them.  I asked for some brioche and gave it to Bubby.  He said, “And that’s why I’m marrying you.”

The amuse bouche: Red grapes covered in goat cheese and pistachios

These pictures are really dark because they sat us where there was no lighting.   I love grapes and cheese so this was a nice refreshing starter.  Bubby hates goat cheese, so I ate two.  More for me, I win.

The second amuse bouche: Orange slice with olives and some kind of orange and pistachio gelée

This was served warm.  I did not care for it.  I do not like the gelatinous texture.  The flavor was okay.

While waiting for our first course to be served, the couple sitting next to us was definitely having an affair.  Bubby leaned in closer to their table and reported, “… they’re talking about adultery… something about a marriage’s vitriol … yeah … definitely … other woman.”  Homeboy was leaning so close to their table that he almost fell over.  And I said, “And that’s why I’m marrying you.”

First Course: Bubby ordered the “Hot and Cold Foie Gras” Artichoke, Mandarin and Lavender

The foie gras on the left is the cold version and the foie gras on the right was the hot version.  This dish was blessed by little baby Jesus.  He walked from heaven on his baby legs and blessed this dish.  The cold foie gras was creamy and the hot foie gras was succulent and warm like a hug from the inside.  I cried a little.

For my First Course I ordered the Blue Fin Tuna Abalone Gelee, Shiitake Mushrooms, Fennel and Fingerlime

This dish was super gelatinous and oceany.  I do not like the smell or taste of the ocean in seafood.  If I did, I’d be a lesbian.  This dish was not for me.  I had one bite and gave the rest to Bubby.

Second Course: We both ordered the Maine Lobster Bolognese Fresh Capellini, Truffle Froth

Why must they ruin a good thing with froth? Every time Marcelle from Top Chef adds froth, it looks like cat spit and makes me want to flip the table like a New Jersey housewife.  I don’t care if it’s truffle froth or liquid gold froth, it looks like Miso’s vomit when he throws up on an empty stomach –just pure bile.  Besides the froth, the pasta texture was soft and really good and the lobster should have been cut in bigger pieces. But overall, this dish was so salty.  Super salt lick salty.  I had to down 2 glasses of water after I ate it.

Third Course: We both ordered the Filet of Beef and Braised Cheek Crushed Potatoes, Morel Mushrooms, Béarnaise, Natural jus

The upper left corner: crushed potatoes
The upper right corner: braised cheek
The lower right corner: filet of beef on a bed of morel mushrooms in natural jus
The lower left corner: fried Béarnaise

The braised cheek and filet of beef were so salty.  And in the corner of the plate? More salt.

You know when food is so salty it cuts up the sides of your tongue?  I felt that.  It was like a salt bomb exploded in my mouth.  And by this time in the meal, I had already drank like 6 glasses of water.  The crushed potatoes were bland and Bubby said, “It’s like the potato salad you get at Ralph’s.”  Ouch.  The braised cheek was tender and flaked off with a fork and the filet was perfectly medium-well just like I requested.  I enjoyed the texture of the mushrooms, too.  But the best in show was the super fried Béarnaise.  Once you cracked it open, the sauce oozed out.  So creamy and dreamy.

Love.

Dessert: Assorted Mélisse Dessert

The dessert theme was chocolate and strawberries.  How fitting.  In the foreground, was a pastry of gelatinous strawberry and chocolate layers.  Back left is more strawberries in chocolate with chocolate ice cream next to it with liquid nitrogen blasted strawberries.  The strawberries were good, the chocolate? I’m not sure.  I don’t like chocolate.  Bubby ate the chocolate so ask him how the chocolate was.

On the other side of our table, was douchebag‘s sister.

Why are all these Asians bringing their big ass cameras into restaurants?  When did this become okay?  Her pictures are probably better than mine so maybe the joke’s on me.

Would I give Mélisse 2 Michelin stars? Absolutely not.  I would barely give Mélisse one fat Asian Michelin baby.

Yes, that’s me in all of my roll glory.

I give Mélisse 3 slow claps + One fat Asian Michelin baby because of the foie gras.

Mélisse
1104 Wilshire Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA