I suppose at this point I should mention that I am nearly full. Those 'snacks' together were bigger than most of the meals I normally eat. Did I mention the speed in which they came out? Even though they were usually one bite, I was often still chewing when the next one hit the table.
(Above left) 'Celeriac & unripe sloe berry. Gooseberry & douglas fir'. I wouldn't call this one of my favorites, but it was interesting. (Above right) 'Brown crab & coral. Egg yolks & herbs'. It was explained that the crab was picked RIGHT before it came to the table, so that it didn't have to be chilled, and therefore lose some of the flavor. That attention to detail is one of the many reasons that this is the best restaurant in the world. It was served with these delicious egg-yolks that had gotten the tea-egg treatment. It was like eating liquid velvet.
This may have been my least favorite, though I am in no way criticizing this dish. It was simply not my taste. 'Dried scallops & beech nuts. Biodynamic grains & watercress'. The scallops were lovely, but the blend of squid ink & watercress didn't work for me.
The person who served this was not being cocky when he said, 'you will never taste a more delicious langoustine.' It is true I usually feel let down by them, they are so easy to overcook. This one had been seared lightly on one side, then carried to the table on this hot rock, cooking it so gently the rest of the way. I don't have the notes on this one, but the sauce dots were umami-goodness with rye-dust. Fantastic.
(Above left) This one was a crown pleaser,'Cauliflower & pine'. I believe the sauce had horseradish.
(Above right) 'Pike perch & cabbages. Verbena & dill'. In Bali, they grill fish inside banana leaves. It reminded me of that.
Oh, oh, oh. If you know me, you know I love pickles. 'Pickled vegetables & bone marrow. Browned butter & parsley'. I watched them put this together in the kitchen. The craftsmanship of each dish was exquisite. I truly thought I couldn't eat any more at this point in time, the previous two dishes I could only manage one bite each, but i polished off the plate.
(Above right) This was, surprisingly enough, one of Dan's favorites of the night. A surprise because Dan does not generally like fish, but he says this is the best fish he has ever had. (He does try it now and again.) 'Roasted turbot & bitter greens. Celeriac & mushroom.' I could only manage a little bite.
I'm going to talk about the desserts, wine, and service in the final installment tomorrow!