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Suzi Edwards

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Everything posted by Suzi Edwards

  1. I've been to WD-50 several times. I was thinking of going back and then writing about my avant-garde weekend as I'm at Alinea and Moto when I'm in Chicago but Bruni beat me to it :-) So, no sushi for Suzi (should have realised really) and people don't think that the Grammercy Tavern is terrible.
  2. I'm trying to work out where to eat in New York next Sunday evening. I've wanted to visit Gramercy Tavern for a while now. But I'd also like to try Moderne at MoMA, Craft, DB Moderne or Jewl Bako. Too many choices, I know. Where would you go? I'm going to have eaten multi course tasting menus for a few nights before so sushi/smallish is appealing...as is something along the lines of Casa Mono. Any thoughts? If anyone fancies meeting up, let me know :-)
  3. Does anyone have a number for Ca L'Isidre? I have tried googling and international directory enquiries but they have nothing. However, I have seen so many spellings I'm not sure they (or I) were looking for the right thing.
  4. So, I don't need botox but I do have two very fine lines under my eyes. What preventative eye creams would you recommend? Anything you've had any sucess with? I've been hearing good things about the SK-II range, any comments?
  5. Suzi Edwards

    Japanese

    Thanks for the ideas- friend works by Baker Street so Michiachi wins it.
  6. Suzi Edwards

    Japanese

    Sorry, am being kind of lazy and have not searched the site for all Japanese recommendations, but I was wondering if anyone can recommend a Japanese place for tonight? I'm most interested in sushi, but some cooked dishes may also be nice. Has anyone been to Michiachi yet?
  7. Of Gilbert and Sullivan fame I assume?
  8. Very lovely to meet everyone last night. Sitting next to Gavin wasn't as bad as he suggested it might be. Highlights for me included: Pak Choi (mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm) Vension Puffs Turnip Cake (I'm now convinced the stuff I had a Hakkasan was some sort of lung effluvia. As I said last night, when I first tried turnip cake I assumed that I was the victim of a Simon Majumdar practical joke it was so disgusting) Char sui buns (I'll take the blame for making Ample over-order on these, but I guess I benefited in the long run) Xiao Long Bao (all others are just a facsimile of the real thing) Shitake and Duck dumpling thing I seemed to miss out on the chive dumplings and the pandan chicken. You have to move like lightening with you lot :-P Other highlights included the overview of socialist newspapers in the early 1840's, admitting that my sole reference points are currently the Guardian weekend magazine and Popbitch and not being booted out of the restaurant and discovering that monkey tastes like rotting eggs (let's not order the monkey cheung fun next time, eh?) Ample- can you publish that list you mentioned of what things taste like?
  9. Suzi Edwards

    Hakkasan

    Here's a link to the Yauatcha menu I would hate for someone not to be able to eat very much. Let's find a new venue if you really can't eat.
  10. Thank you for the props Paul! So, any reports? Cabrales, were you there on the first night?
  11. Oh wow. This is great information! Thank you so much for helping me out!
  12. That's looking like my best bet. Rough suggestion about how long JFK to Grand Central will be in a cab at about 5.00pm? Is there a quicker way?
  13. lol. very phil collins, live aid. i can just see tana's face if i arrive in a helicopter. stupid question, but what's a van service?
  14. Yep, it's $150 with a hire car service. I'm guessing that a taxi probably wouldn't go that far. Hmmmmmmmmmm.
  15. Quick query about getting to BHSB (and apologies if this has already been answered, but 341 posts...) I need to get to BHSB from JFK. I can't drive. I understand that the train isn't an option owing to timescales. The rather unhelpful reservation taker at BHSB has just told me to take a cab. Any idea if this is likely to bankrupt me?
  16. I'm about too. What about Yauatcha? The Chinese Experience? Haven't been upstairs at the French House for, oooooh, six years. I found my first ever grey hair there. Going back may be cathartic for me. Who's cooking there now?
  17. Hakkasan isn't too far...There's also quite a fun Korean place called Asso (Assa?) on St Giles Street... I would go back to Shanghai Blues though. They just better have soup in the buns this time
  18. I'd be up for lunch at Shanghai Blues. I work just around the corner. It wasn't great last time I went though...They're on their third strike with me.
  19. Have to disagree. The appetisers are often better than the mains though so I can see where some dissapointment could come in. Build a mini tasting menu from the appetisers. The bread alone is reason to go. I eat here once a month at least. It is, consistently, one of London's better restaurants. Good sherry list too. I had a very disappointing meal at Chez Bruce in December. First visit, high hopes. I would not return on the showing they gave. I think you and I have different tastes Paul!
  20. June. Assuming work doesn't continue to get in the way of my eating.
  21. Very good (but some time ago); decent; mixed but hit good highs. I'm sure there's a thread on the last one. Leon: nice cheap wraps if you're around -- and a very clever call if you want a quiet drink in the late evening in that area -- but hardly something to bother with on a visit, except if you have an interest in the concept itself. Really? I had no idea. Can't imagine what having a drink there would be like. Do they still serve food until late? I'd suggested it as a quick lunch option rather than a revelatory gastromonic experience...
  22. I've made trip to Evanston twice now. Once to satisfy my curiosity, once to check if the first meal was a fluke. For me, Grant Achatz is the most important chef in the world at the moment. He's at that point of the bell curve where the inventiveness of molecular gastronomy meets emotionally and physically satisfying food and he nails both almost every time. I can forgive him the almost as the misses (and there have only been five out of all the dishes i have eaten) as food this thrilling and inventive doesn't come without experimentation. I don't need to be convinced about molecular gastronomy. However as a person who hates pigeon holes I kind of resent the term. Sure, the label helps me identify the restaurants I want to eat at, but more importantly it allows people to bracket Achatz, Blumenthal, Adria et al together without concern for the differences in their approach and food. For me, Adria is the mad, crazy alchemist determined to conjure gold out of tomatoes, Blumenthal the chemistry teacher who impresses you with his culinary flights of fancy while convincing you that molecular gastronomy the obvious next stage in the evolution of dining out. And then there's Achatz. To me his food is more emotional, on the plate no less inventive than Adria and Blumenthal, but deeply rooted in (to me) the intrinsic necessity of a cook: to sate an appetite yet to create food that people want to eat again. And in my case, again and again and again. I believe that everything we eat adds up to form your personal pantheon of food experience. As a former anorexic a tendency to fetishise food still remains. Memories of driving myself crazing sniffing the biscuit barrel yet denying myself the cookie makes me desire food that smells great. Equally, huge portions daunt me and I would rather eat 15 different single bites than one large portion. As someone who has taught herself a basic understanding of the principals of a number of different cuisines, I love food that takes something I've cooked myself and subverts it. I believe that food can evoke memory more than anything and so I like to eat food that reminds me of other food I have eaten. Yet I crave the new and exciting and love nothing more than trying something for the first time. Achatz satisfies all of these personal needs. And so onto the food and restaurant. The room and the service are relaxed and informal. The room reminds me of a log cabin, it's kind of low ceilinged, with a real warmth to it. The staff are having a blast and this translates into a fabulous experience. I've eaten here alone both times and I am almost loath to go back with friends as talking to the waiters about the food and wine is a damn sight more interesting that most dinner conversations. I’m not going to talk about every dish I’ve eaten here, there are too many for that, but instead I'll concentrate on my favorite bits. Cheese n Cracker, Salad, Virtual Shrimp Cocktail, Chicharrones con Salsa. Some might see these dishes as curiosities but to me they are some of the most entertaining, whimsical and delicious on the menu. Cheese n Cracker is a crisp parcel filled with Wisconsin cheddar. I joked to my waiter that I didn't think Americans knew how to make cheese, but this was stellar. A molten, oozing single bite of great cheese wrapped in the cracker. Salad is a granita of different lettuces (juiced and then frozen and shaved) dressed with oil and vinegar. The inventiveness of the execution should be enough by itself, but it was perfectly dressed as well, something that many traditional restaurants can't pull off with real lettuce. It came at the half way point in the TDF and was a perfect palate cleanser and it also regirded my loins for the second "half" of the meal. Achatz has cleverly created a long and involved tasting menu that has phases, doesn't throw all the cool and inventive stuff at you at first and that is perfectly paced. Virtual Shrimp Cocktail is an atomizer that you mist onto your tongue; didn’t work for me, reminded me of my asthma medication, but the flavor was there, even though the delivery mechanism failed. North Dakota goose (foie gras, roasting goose aromas) Rib eye of Prime Beef (spring lettuce, morels, smoked tongue) Tapioca of Roses (raspberries, clove, cream) These are the dishes where smell really comes into play and Achatz's desire to deliver new ways of experiencing the food and smell are apparent. The goose is served with a small dish on the side full of aromatics and a hot stone is placed on the dish (with a warning not to eat it) that releases the aroma. The rib eye of smoked beef comes with a small beaker over the beef and tongue, the beaker is filled with smoke so you experience the real hit of the smoking as you eat. The tapioca of roses is served in a plastic tube with a single red rose and three warm raspberries on the plate. The first dish I was served at El Bulli came with a rose, but I found the experience somewhat embarrassing as we'd literally just sat down and were being commanded to sniff. Achatz saves this until the end, so you're more relaxed and happy to let yourself do what he says. Last time I ate here one diner grasped the rose in his teeth and was grinning like a schoolboy. Not something I saw at more formal places like El Bulli or Gagnaire. Tempura of Gulf Shrimp (vanilla, cranberry, Meyer lemon) Black Truffle Explosion, Confit of Melysol Melon and Fricassee of English Peas (cured goose, ramps, pearls of eucalyptus). The tempura is the most delicious thing I have ever eaten, beating Ramsey's Tarte Tatin by a very long way. It's not the most inventive thing on the menu but it's made of things that i love (prawns, vanilla, fried food) delivered in a new way (speared on a vanilla bean) and eaten by lifting the bean upwards and lowering the tempura into your mouth. People look almost religious as they throw their heads back and eat. The temptation to snatch it from the hands of those who closed their eyes to do this was strong, but I managed to resist. The Confit of Melysol melon is Achatz's take on that old faithful melon and Parma ham. Melon is balled into almost nerd sized balls, arranged and then covered with the thinnest slice of prosciutto that's flashed under the grill until it becomes transparent. this dish works in so many different ways; you've had it before but never like this, the melon is the sweetest you've ever eaten and it looks like the candy you had as a child. Simply stunning. And the fricassee of English peas. What a spring like dish! To me it's a riff on the peas and mint thing, but here the mint is replaced with eucalyptus pearls (gelled balls flavoured with eucalyptus oil) that mimic the size, shape and mouthfeel of the peas, but with a surprising flavor. There's an erotic nature to Trio that I don't want to overemphasize, but needs mentioning as so few restaurants deliver this. It's not seedy erotic, more the frisson of flirting when you know you shouldn't and playfulness that comes from being physically and mentally stimulated. I don't know if it's intentional or just imagined by me, but the delivery of the food (frozen hibiscus lollipops to suck, tempura with vanilla beans allowing you to close your eyes and throw back your head (still can't stop thinking about this dish) charred pineapple and smoked salmon speared so you lean in, as if for a kiss and, on my last visit, a tube of foie gras) coupled with the low lighting and drapes on the ceiling, makes this a really intimate place to eat. If you live in Chicago and you haven't been, go. If you live anywhere else, get on a flight and go. (It's late and I am tired. Not sure if this takes the conversation anywhere. It's an old post from eG)
  23. I really, strongly disagree with anyone who says that Achatz's food is based on Adria's, even with a partially thrown in to soften the claim. There are some shared techniques, but the overall experience could not be more different. Eating at Trio was an oozy, sexy sensual meal full of moments when you had to tip your head back, as if in ecstacy, to eat the shrimp tempura with meyer lemon and cranberry. El Bulli, on the other hand, is a sterile, much more scientific meal where, I personally, only had one moment (spaghetti with brioche) where I even actually smiled, the food in my mouth was so pleasurable. I recognise that I came to El Bulli too early and didn't make as much of the experience as I would now. A little like listening to Schoenberg before you've enjoyed Mozart. I will be interested to see if that playful, joyful sensuality still comes through at Alinea.
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