Day 808

1. Giving my foodie husband a birthday gift he absolutely loved – a surprise meal at a four-star restaurant.

2. Somehow the kitchen staff at the restaurant didn’t receive advance warning that a vegan [me] would be dining with them this evening (even though I made that *exceptionally* clear when I secured the reservation).  Initially the chefs were flustered – but they rallied quite quickly, and by the end of the evening had given me an experience that paralleled my husband’s in quality and variety.

3.  Being completely entertained for the 3+ hour dining experience.  My sweetie and I: 

  • ate a micro salad served on the top of our hand; 
  • consumed a liquid nitrogen bite that caused us to briefly exhale “smoke”;
  • ate food off a hook that a chef suspended above our head, bobbing-for-apples style (aka, using our hands to consume this bite was not allowed);
  • sat back while a parade of chefs walked through the restaurant, each dropping a single ingredient into our bowl and creating a Japanese soup before our eyes;
  • stood up and paraded ourselves through the open kitchen, where another series of chefs created a dessert for us conveyor-belt/assembly-line style;
  • ate skewers, “lollipops”, single bites, and small plates, all created with a level of meticulousness I have honestly never experienced in food before…

The experience was one neither my husband nor I will forget anytime soon (if ever) – and I am SO grateful to have been able to truly enjoy it with him.

One of the courses in my meal.  From right to left:  Skewer 1 - A sweet potato scallop, paper-thin slice of taro root, charred pepper, and drizzle of amazing herbs and oils. Skewer 2 - A cauliflower 'potato salad', comprised of roasted cauliflower bites, marinated onion slices, braised celery bits, and slightly roasted mustard seeds.  Skewer 3 - Charred Brussels sprouts, topped with a sweet-spicy-savory beet reduction.   Holy buckets.

One of the courses in my meal. From right to left:
Skewer 1 – A sweet potato scallop, paper-thin slice of taro root, charred pepper, and drizzle of amazing herbs and oils.
Skewer 2 – A cauliflower ‘potato salad’, comprised of roasted cauliflower bites, marinated onion slices, braised celery bits, and slightly roasted mustard seeds.
Skewer 3 – Charred Brussels sprouts, topped with a sweet-spicy-savory beet reduction.
Holy buckets.

The course my sweetie received: Same sweet potato scallop, taro root slice, and charred pepper.  His drizzle of amazing herbs and oils had animal fats in it - and for this course one of the chefs came to our table, extracted a piece of wagu beef (that had been sitting in a bowl of charcoal that was delivered to our table a few minutes before this plate arrived), and proceeded to expertly cut the beef into two bites before our eyes - which he then placed on the yellow dot of sauce.  WOW.

The course my sweetie received: Same sweet potato scallop, taro root slice, and charred pepper. His drizzle of amazing herbs and oils had animal fats in it – and for this course one of the chefs came to our table, extracted a small piece of wagyu beef (that had been sitting in a bowl of charcoal that was delivered to our table a few minutes before this plate arrived), and proceeded to expertly cut the beef into two bites before our eyes – which he then placed on the yellow dot of sauce. WOW.

Stef

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