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Thread: Tales from a Bon Vivant - The Really Good Restaurants Thread

  1. #41
    Super Moderator Global Moderator QuackBot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by teds :D View Post

    im messi irl

    (lol no)

    san carlo is another good italian in mcr
    No, i think the mc is just a means" and san.

  2. #42
    Movember '12 Best Facial Hair Movember 2012Donor Lallante's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quarky View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lallante View Post

    Alain Ducasse, Marlebone, London - 3 Michelin stars. This was a gift from work, so we had the black truffle menu which is so ridiculously expensive I could never justify it to myself if I was paying. Was as exciting and awesome as you would expect. Highlight for me was a fois-gras dumpling truffle-soup. Imagine a beautiful, hot black truffle broth giving way to an explosion of cold, melting fois-gras as you bite into the dumpling. Unbelievably rich and delicious.
    Sound pretty awesome. Damn nice gift as well. I have to admit though that if I could choose I would never dine in one of these "chain" michelin star restaurants. Don't get me wrong, Ducasse is the man, but it would lack the touch of genius for me. I am well aware that this bullshit on a rational level, but enjoying food isn' t a rational thing either. I can understand running different sorts of operations, but spawning 2-3 star restaurants with in parts identical dishes ....
    I dont disagree. One-offs are more "exciting" and often better value and atmosphere

  3. #43
    King of the Food Thread
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    Just came back from my trip to Spain with a wrecked credit card:

    Kokotxa – San Sebastian
    Recently got a Michelin Star... Ceviche of scallops and sweet potato purée; squid; hake and venison... very nice indeed. Best dish for me was the truffled pig trotters ravioli with Iberian broth. A nod to modern techniques now and then (foams, gels) but never just a gimmick. Good service.


    Mugaritz
    2 Michelin Stars, No. 6 on the (controversial) S.Pellegrino list. I wanted to go there for over 3 years. Maybe I went there with larger than life expectation. Maybe they had just a bad day. Wonderful place/restaurant, super friendly staff. Was told that for the most part there will be no cutlery. Nice, think that helps people to get over the „wow I am actually eating at the Mugaritz“ factor and enjoy the food. Was asked if I wanted to see the kitchen before the first course (every table is sooner or later). The man himself was absent, but one of the chefs showed me around, explained a bit about the food and how the create dishes. Had my first plate in the kitchen. Using a modified sake production method they produced rice pudding and then grilled it. Nice!

    So I come back to my table, giddy with excitement but sadly a bit of a roller-coaster starts. It's a personalized 20 something menu designed by the chef. It's both a blessing and a curse. Yes they can adjust for you (but really being German do I need 3 beef courses?), but then you can also see what other tables get. Sometimes you think „oh wow I know that dish I would like to have this as well“. So you end up being jealous of other peoples food... that's odd.

    To most dishes there are stories or the only really come to life if the staff is telling you a bit about it („Bovis maxima“ as a name for example is not really enough to figure it out on our own). While service was super friendly, I had every waiter in the room serving me food at least once. To make thinks worse the level of explanations went from nothing, to just saying the name (I had the damn personalized menu in front of me), to explaining the dish or telling a story about it.

    Overall, some of the dishes are really cool (grilled mochi, mackerel beettroot and horseradish, Bovis maxima, Jasmine and hay, toffee and parsnip cake, glass (sugar and cocoa), asparagus tempura), some cool but somehow lacking (live cannellone – lobster w/o any taste at all; oyster and young garlic omelette– omelette is a dry grey mass around the oyster, that I consider a really bad slip by the kitchen) and some you have to remind yourself that you are at Mugaritz (Marine cold cuts – smoked fish/squid/mussels but smoke flavour is so heavy you could be eating rubber instead, squid with cocoa was cool though, kind of like eating bacon; marinated strawberries that taste like flavourless strawberries). Mixed feelings but would would like to give them a second try.

    Link to a massive archive of pictures on their site.


    Azurmendi
    3 Michelin Stars, No. 26 S. Pellegrino list
    Just outside Bilbao. Lovely place, great view, even when dining alone I got a nice window table. The usual tour through the green house (you get some snacks while you tour) and the kitchen (Mr. Atxa at the helm and coming around to great and have a little chat). I rather prefer to go straight to the table but the sommelier showing me around made it actually a fun walk. Amazing food, great wines (had a 6 years old ice cider for one of the desserts, nice!), super service (slightly stiff but still friendly and super professional). 3 hours of my life very well spent. If you are close by, go there!


    Etxebarri
    1 Michelin Star, No. 34 S. Pellegrino list
    This place is just ridiculous, but in a good way. Out in the countryside, little village with maybe 10 houses. 1 hour drive from Bilbao. You walk in and end up in the village pub. People at the bar (clearly used to it) smile at you and send you upstairs. It is wood fired cooking all the way. Unlike the smoked fish at Mugaritz they know how to control it and use different coals (home made) to prepare dishes. Most dishes are just one or two ingredients. Sound boring? It's awesome. Young peas with just a bit of smokiness to them (instead of bacon). Nearly the best dish I had all week. Oyster with a hint of smoke. A mackerel warm, perfectly cooked. Their trade mark steak, nearly bleu but with a thick crust around it. My portion was not much smaller than the steak for 2 and no extra charge. Nearly had to skip the desserts. High quality seasonal products, perfect execution... awesome! Perfect end to my trip. Would prefer a few weeks w/o another tasting menu though.

    Link to a Flickr album (random, not my pictures)

  4. #44
    Movember '12 Best Facial Hair Movember 2012Donor Lallante's Avatar
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    noice.

  5. #45
    King of the Food Thread
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    Culinary expedition 2016 organized, all reservations made.


    • Frantzén - Stockholm, some spoilered food porn below:

        Spoiler:


    • Ekstedt - Stockholm, wood fired cooking, lets see how it compares to Etxebarri
    • The Jane - Antwerpen, apparently the trendiest restaurant in Belgium with good food, we will see
    • 't Zilte - Antwerpen, hopefully the food is as good as the view, have not heared much about the restaurant in the last years
    • Hertog Jan - Zedelgem
    • Tim Raue - Berlin, really looking forward to this one

  6. #46
    Djan Seriy Anaplian's Avatar
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    A friend of mine is a chef at The Palomar in Soho, they serve Israeli/Lebanese food in a fine dining setting. It's quite fresh/hip, i'd highly recommend it.

  7. #47
    Movember '12 Best Facial Hair Movember 2012Donor Lallante's Avatar
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    Ate in this place, had the best and most expensive meal of my life, in both cases "by far":

    http://www.the-araki.com/

    I cant describe how good this was....or how expensive.

    If I go again it wont be until a lottery win...but I'm beyond glad I went.


    The Palomar is the bomb.

    I've also just eaten yesterday at "Hoppers" in soho - high end Sri Lankan food with a typical TWO HOUR QUEUE to get in at 7pm (so we arrived at 6pm) - was incredibly and not expensive at all (sub 60 quid for 2).

    Also on my list for later this month is "The Good Egg" which is getting rave brunch reviews and Bao, a taiwanese filled bun place with similar queues to Hoppers.
    Last edited by Lallante; February 17 2016 at 11:45:41 AM.

  8. #48
    Smuggo
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    £300 for sushi?!?!

    Wow, and I always feel a bit ripped off when I get lunch in Wasabi.

  9. #49
    Smuggo
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    I bet it's not as good as Sushi Samba.

  10. #50
    Djan Seriy Anaplian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smuggo View Post
    I bet it's not as good as Sushi Samba.

    Bit overrated tbh

  11. #51
    Ask me about midgets Donor Mendolorian Girl's Avatar
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    if you like traditional Spanish food, and are Manchester way, check out La Bandera. Restaurant decor is fine, but the food is awesome. Orders of magnitude better than Ibérica, for about 1/2 the price. Owners are pretty chill too. Only a matter of time before they hugely upgrade the venue I'm sure.
    i·ro·ny1
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smuggo View Post
    Just goes to show how lowbrow the tastes of the British public are.

  12. #52
    Keckers's Avatar
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    My value for money barometer is M&S sandwiches. I think they've found the perfect balance for providing added value for a slight premium.
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Mason
    It is absurd that we are capable of witnessing a 40,000 year old system of gender oppression begin to dissolve before our eyes yet still see the abolition of a 200 year old economic system as an unrealistic utopia.

  13. #53
    King of the Food Thread
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    GBP 300 does indeed sound like some agressive pricing considering that you would get 3 star sushi in Tokyo for less. But hey, if it indeed was amazing food I consider the cash well spent.

  14. #54
    Movember 2012 I Legionnaire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quarky View Post
    Culinary expedition 2016 organized, all reservations made.


    • Frantzén - Stockholm, some spoilered food porn below:

        Spoiler:


    • Ekstedt - Stockholm, wood fired cooking, lets see how it compares to Etxebarri
    • The Jane - Antwerpen, apparently the trendiest restaurant in Belgium with good food, we will see
    • 't Zilte - Antwerpen, hopefully the food is as good as the view, have not heared much about the restaurant in the last years
    • Hertog Jan - Zedelgem
    • Tim Raue - Berlin, really looking forward to this one
    No side trip to De Karmeliet in Bruges?

  15. #55
    King of the Food Thread
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    Quote Originally Posted by I Legionnaire View Post

    No side trip to De Karmeliet in Bruges?
    Abundance of choices meets limited funds really. Also 4 tasting menus in a week is pushing it slightly I feel. The Jane and Hertog Jan is why I wanted to go to Belgium in the first place. A lot of other great restaurants in Belgium to choose from (L'Air du Temps, In de Wulf, Hof van Cleve, De Karmeliet etc.). Hof van Cleve was initally planned till I found out that they do not take reservations for just 1 person. I know they have a small dining room but really thats just a bad habit. 't Zilte offers the bonus of a nice view and I wanted to have 2 nights in Antwerpen anyway.

    Have you been to De Karmeliet recently? I have seen some mixed reviews so it was crossed of my list. Currently pondering to add a lunch at Pastorale but could switch to lunch at De Karmeliet easily as Hertog Jan is close to Bruges as well.

  16. #56
    Ask me about midgets Donor Mendolorian Girl's Avatar
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    Day thread talk on curries reminded me of one of our favourite lunch time restaurants Zouk in Manchester. Really disappointing in the evening (although a really nice atmosphere), but they do a lunch time tiffin for £7 or something nuts. Comes with some tikka chicken, a chicken curry, lamb curry, plain naan and rice and it's always excellent. Open kitchen, you can see them making the naan's etc.
    i·ro·ny1
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smuggo View Post
    Just goes to show how lowbrow the tastes of the British public are.

  17. #57
    vDJ's Avatar
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    Holy shit the Guardian destroys the Georges V restaurant.
    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeands...iew-jay-rayner

  18. #58
    King of the Food Thread
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    Quote Originally Posted by vDJ View Post
    Holy shit the Guardian destroys the Georges V restaurant.
    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeands...iew-jay-rayner
    I saw that and it had me giggle at times. Not the first bad review of Le Cinq really.

    "It is decorated in various shades of taupe, biscuit and fuck you."

    "A dessert of frozen chocolate mousse cigars wrapped in tuile is fine, if you overlook the elastic flap of milk skin draped over it, like something that’s fallen off a burns victim."

    "My lips purse, like a cat’s arse that’s brushed against nettles."

    I like reading his reviews but he sometimes tries to hard to be down to earth/edgy.

  19. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by vDJ View Post
    Holy shit the Guardian destroys the Georges V restaurant.
    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeands...iew-jay-rayner
    That was thoroughly entertaining.

    And the pictures of the real dishes there at the end were utterly depressing.

    Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk

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