Thursday, April 19, 2007

A Classic Meal

When presenting a 5 course meal, it is tough to pace the meal in a way where the diners don't get too full and miss out on any of the action. Teddy's last menu came in waves with each course proving to be better than the last. And just when we finished the main course, a phenomenal Rabbit prepared 3-Ways with Wild Mushroom Risotto, the whole production was brought to grinding halt with a delicate dessert and flavorful cheese to cap it off. Not too full, and no scrap of food went to waste.

Here's what we had in store for us when we arrived last Thursday.

* Spiced carrot soup with almonds
* Scallop, fresh tuna, pea and mint salad w/ tarragon and lemon dressing
* Rabbit three ways, w/wild mushroom risotto and English mustard vinaigrette
* Mascarpone with strawberry sauce
* 5-Year aged Gouda, apple pickle

The soup starter was silky smooth (strained 3 times legend has it) and had a great balance of intense spices and carrot flavor. It was key not to gorge ourselves on this first course because we had a long road ahead.......but I could have easily drank a small tub of the stuff.

The seafood salad mixed multiple elements of the sea, combining fresh raw tuna, pan seared scallops and a heavily seasoned, sauteed shrimp (I'll be cold and buried before I refer to them as prawns) . All of these were plated on a pea and mint puree. The tuna was the most textural item of the three, it was so fresh that it had no fishy taste at all, and melted like butter on the tongue.

Drum roll please..........rabbit 3-ways.

-Fried into crackling- -Roast Loin-

...and finally braised rabbit with the finished product.

It turned out as good as it looks on paper. The earthy and rich risotto was a perfect accompaniment to the juicy loin, crispy-chewy crackling and fall-apart braised meat. A generous smear of mustard vinaigrette was sharp enough to tie all the items together. Definitely one of the single best meals Teddy and the Club as a whole has created.

When you butcher a rabbit, there tends to be some leftover parts. Rest assured, we didn't let them go to waste. As a "surprise", Jason and I got to feast on the rabbit kidneys cooked in brandy (flambeed might be the more technical term, but I'll let the FDNY report tell the story).

The dessert tasted like a chilled strawberry soup with a creamy dollop of Marscapone in the middle. A 5-year aged Gouda capped off the night.

Super creative ideas, unbelievable tastes, all cooked up by a half drunk Brit. Kudos to the chef for a wonderfully prepared meal.

One question though.....where's my damn Apple Pickle??!

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