Friday, March 6, 2015

Foodie Fun

Katherine loves food. She likes shopping for it, cooking it, and eating it. She likes reading cooking magazines and watching cooking shows. She is one of the most adventurous and enthusiastic eaters I have ever met. She may only be 11, but she is most definitely a Foodie.

Aunt Robie and Uncle Brandon gifted Kate with a fancy dinner at a restaurant called Taste and See as her 11th birthday present. Katherine was thrilled! On the appointed night, we showed up and ordered the 7 course "tasting menu" prepared on the spot and served by the chef. It was an amazing meal!

The first course was a beet, stuffed with liver (in pate form) and topped with cream and chopped scallions.
Our server and the chef were both a bit skeptical about our ordering this unusual meal for an 11 year old, but Kate quickly won them over as she happily tasted every single thing and declared most dishes "delicious!" Including beets stuffed with liver.
Our second course was a salad of curly greens croutons, and quail eggs topped with a bacon dressing and avocado. It was served in a duck eggshell and came with tiny forks. It was so delicious that all four of decided that it should really come in an ostrich eggshell sized version.
The third course was fried calamari, in both large rings and tiny whole squid, topped with fennel infused "air" foam on a bed of squid ink risotto. Katherine was a bit unsure about the idea of squid, but became an instant fan after the first bite.

The fourth course consisted of blood sausage, Korean chorizo, and some sort of Italian baloney made with peppercorns and pistachios and fried crispy. The meats were drizzled with two different sauces and served with a parmesan corn meal fritter. It was all lovely to look at, but all four of us agreed that it was our least favorite part of the dinner. Blood sausage in particular was hard to stomach - musty tasting and mushy. It was the one and only item that even Katherine wouldn't eat more than one bite.

Our fifth course was filet mignon topped with macaroni and cheese wrapped in puff pastry, sitting in a pool of fondue cheese. It was just as rich as it sounds!
The sixth course was beef marrow with a brown sugar and garlic glaze. The chunks of bone were sizzling hot and came with tiny spoons to dig out the morrow. I was not excited about the idea of marrow especially drizzled with both garlic and sugar. It turned out to be wonderful!

Our seventh course was dessert. And what a dessert! The menu read simply "Milk and cookies". And that's what we had, although I had never dreamed of such milk and cookies! The cookies were chocolate chip with a layer of nutella, propped on a chunk of banana, and drizzled with more nutella. The chef described the drink as having "condensed milk, lotsa milks!" plus a little brandy, a whole vanilla bean, a cinnamon stick, and black pepper. It was served with dry ice and a silver Argentinian mate straw. We all just stared in amazement when the waiter carried out platters with smoking drinks!

It was the most unusual meal I have ever eaten. It was also terrific fun! And Katherine? She thought it was magnificent! She has recounted the meal experience to anyone who will listen. I'm pretty sure she dreams about calamari and nutella and the magic of dry ice. And she definitely thinks Robie is the Best Aunt Ever for appreciating and encouraging her Foodie soul.

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