Wednesday, August 1, 2012

more food

so after having such an amazing meal at goosefoot on Saturday night, I thought that the plans we had for Tuesday night with the Chicago Gourmets (CG) group might be a let down.  so I was grousing about having to drive an hour and a half in rush hour traffic to the suburbs and complaining to Phil about why we would go this far when we have amazing restaurants like goosefoot less than ten blocks from us... and who eats at 6:30 anyway - only ancient people- LOL - you get the drift.

and so-

boy was I so wrong- seriously wrong- and we had just a fabulous meal at Mecenat in Western Springs (we didn't know where it was until we went there - cute little old "on the commuter rail line" kind of town.)

so here is my report- this chef totally knows his stuff- had made the rounds of several high end places in the area and now has found his patron and opened his work of food art in downtown center - right across from the train station in Western Springs. His name is Jonathan Harootunian.  And the wine pairings were presented by the Jean-Jacques Fertal president of Eagle Eye brands and owners of various vineyards in France (from Alsace in the north to the Mediterranean in the south.)

We started with a crab and citrus salad served with wontons. This was paired with an Alsatian Pinot Blanc.

 above three photos courtesy of Don Newcomb

the next course was a really delicious summer salad with mesclun, strawberries, manchego and almonds in a light vinaigrette with these incredibly yummy strawberry caramel squares (could have eaten about a dozen more of those things!) here Jean- Jacques paired with a sparkling wine the Cremant d'Alsace

 courtesy Don Newcomb

the next course - a knock your socks off foie gras in a mushroom bacon ragout- this was to die for and I barely managed to keep from licking the plate! it was served with a GSM that I found really tasty (Phil liked the next course wine pairing better) Karantes Bergerie

the following course was duck breast served with a summer berry gastrique and smoked chocolate sauce - and was served with another higher end GSM blend but with different proportions Chateau de Karantes

OK- I forgot to take the picture because I was so anxious to taste the smoked chocolate sauce!

then we had another course- the dessert, that I could have had at least two servings and probably even then would have had to stop myself from ordering another.  it was a honey pound cake with roasted peaches and a spiced caramel sauce. It was paired with a dessert wine from the Bordeaux area Chateau Les Roques Cuvee Frantz.

I don't know who told the chef that I am a sucker for caramel but I am certainly glad they passed the info along- LOL 

Chastised by the meal - I admitted to Phil it was worth the 90 minute drive but still put in my two cents that had it been set for dinner at 8 PM we wouldn't have had issues with the traffic and could have been there in half the time (just as it only took us 45 minutes to get home - zipped over the Ike and up LSD)

so kudos to Don Newcomb for hosting the lovely event and also for several of the photos (his were better than my cell in some cases - and he is credited for them)

Next on our CG schedule is an event at Calihan early next week... watch for a review....

Sunday, July 29, 2012

social week / Goosefoot

sorry I have been away so long but as usual - when we are home - we are busy...since the last post we have had dinner with Neil (Socca) and dinner with John & Kathy (Resi's) and dinner with Mick (Anteprima) - been working on October Denmark, Sweden and Finland trip plans along with Galapagos & Machu Picchu plans for next May... and...

last night we had dinner at Goosefoot with Sheila & Mary along with Robert & Catherine (who were celebrating a mind boggling 41st anniversary) and David & Sveta.

Goosefoot is pretty close to the hottest reservation you can score these days- excepting of course the almost impossibly complex NEXT ticketing process...

and...Sheila & Mary got us all a space there for dinner on a Saturday night and it is certainly worth the effort!

we had an incredible meal AND because it is also BYO - we had a very good selection of wines to pair with the various courses... and although not always the case, I thought our wines (1990 Clos de la Roche and 2002 Corton-Charlemange) showed especially well.

here are some photos - the menu and the dishes and the wines:

an amuse bouche- beet with citrus

the scallop/lobster course

the char course-

the duck -

the beef course -

the cheese course-

a palate cleanser of pomegranate and beet with olive oil drops - quite refreshing...

my personal favorite the sweet corn soup - "I'll have a quart to go please!" - sorry I got this one out of order because for some reason it was upside down the first time I loaded it--- LOL

the fruity dessert -

the chocolaty dessert -

an extra something- to end with (don't eat the wood!)

this was in the kitchen - not sure of how they were interpreting it but I know we were all fired up about the meal!

a quick tour of the kitchen during the clean up phase of the evening-

above- the chef shows off his micro greens
below - happy anniversary Robert & Catherine!

although most of these cell phone photos do not begin to do justice to the beauty of the presentation of the meal - they might scratch the surface of the wonderful evening we all had - we left the restaurant at 1:15 AM and were home in less than fifteen minutes as there isn't a lot of traffic at that time of the night in Lincoln Square.