Monday, January 09, 2006

"New York, New York you're a hell of a town..."

Hmmm...not much to report.

The new year hasn't exactly started off with a bang...maybe more of a whimper.

Actually one good start to the year was the resignation of Tom Delay as House Majority Leader. A small start, but maybe it's a precursor of things to come. Is the impeachment of Dubya in our future? We can only hope...

Work has been slow. The owner was out of town for a while and now the store manager is out of town. It's been a nice reprieve, but now the owner is back gangbusters. It was nice while it lasted. At least the holidays are over...

I've been planning a dinner party for six friends and myself. These people are all foodies and winos. It's a little stressful trying to plan for hors' douvres and a five course dinner. These people really don't care, but I always want to impress and have everything go off perfectly. I've almost got the menu nailed down and have bought as many of the non-perishables as I can think of. I've already got some wines picked out and set aside with a few more to purchase. Here's a rough idea of the menu I have planned...
Hors' douvres-
Smoked Salmon
Cannelini Bean Crostini with Onion and Sage
Crostini with Oven Roasted Grape Tomatoes, Basil, and Fresh Buffalo Mozzarella
Graber Olives, Parmigiano Reggiano, Primadonna Sheeps Milk Gouda, Laura Chenel Goat Cheese, Crackers, Bread
Undecided. Maybe none.
Cream of Potato Leek with Pancetta, Frizzled Leeks, and Creme Fraiche
Roasted Pork Loin with Mustard, Garlic, and Bacon with Sweet Potato Chip Garnish
Porcini and Morel Risotto with White Truffle Oil
Vegetable (undecided)
Greens with roasted pear, gorgonzola, hazelnut, red onion, dried blueberries
Pear vinaigrette
Broiled caramelized pineapple slices topped with macadamia nut, brown sugar, and butter over creme brulee

We'll's a work in progress. Maybe I'll just order pizza and drink some insanely good wines with it.

The biggest and best news right now is that I've booked my flight to New York. I'll be leaving in a couple of weeks. I called the hotel and booked an extra day. I haven't been to NYC since 1994. One of my Australian co-travelers will also be coming in a day early. Hopefully we'll get a little time to catch up and take in some of the sights. There are probably at least 100 restaurants in New York that I can name off that I want to eat at, but I've only got a short time and not a lot of money. Of course I'd love to eat at Daniel, Nob, Per Se, Le Bernardin, Alain Ducasse at the Essex House, Jean Georges, Lespinasse, Veritas, Peter Luger, Aquavit, Felidia, Babbo, Po, Oceana, 21 Club, etc. The list goes on and on. I am very seriously going to try to get a meal in at Les Halles. One of my culinary and literary heroes, Anthony Bourdain, is executive chef there. Here's his bio. I know that he's now a self acclaimed "sell-out" and that there's a very slim chance that he'd actually be there, but I want to have a hanger steak and the best pommes frites in town...or maybe some innards. Not only is he a classicly trained top chef he's written the best damn book on restaurants and cooking- Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly. It is the be all and end all of contemporary culinary writing. I cannot tell you how much I LOVE that book. Every young chef/cook I talk to worships it. He's also written A Cook's Tour (non-fiction), Bone in the Throat (fiction), Gone Bamboo (fiction), The Bobby Gold Stories (fiction), Typhoid Mary: An Urban Historical, and others. He also currently has a show on the Travel Channel called No Reservations. Yeah...I dig Anthony Bourdain. Sue me.

Chef/Author/Host/Sell-Out Anthony Bourdain

Pigs feet at Les Halles

Although he's a mega-star celebrity chef I wouln't mind eating at one of Mario Batali's restaurants. I completely respect him as he is completely dedicated to and passionate about the finest in authentic Italian cuisine.

I'm really looking forward to seeing some of my fellow AusWATeers in NYC. We're going to be taken out to dinner on the Wednesday. It's an Australasian place and I presently can't remember the name. Thursday will be the mega Aussie wine-event and I'll be captaining a table. I really can't wait. I love New York, I love my Aussie traveling companions and hosts, and I love all things Australian...especially wine.

Last night I went bowling for a friend's 30th birthday celebration. I had to work until 9:00 so I couldn't make the dinner, but I was able to make it for the "Cosmic Bowling". We had 4 lanes and a good time. I bowled a 99, a 93, and a 47 (in that order). Did I ever mention that I suck at bowling? It was fun and we all had a laugh. I've met my bowling quota for the next few years.

Here's last weeks Jack Lessenberry column from the Metro Times. Another good opinion column...this week about the struggles ahead in 2006.

I forgot to mention in my last post my favorite wine of the year. After posting that big list of great wines I actually neglected to include my favorite wine of 2005. 2003 Glaymond Landrace Barossa Valley Red...DELICIOUS!!!

Hope that your 2006 isn't sucking too much so far...



Blogger Kathleen said...

The dinner sounds lovely - meat products notwithstanding. ;-)

I didn't know you were going to NYC! Have a great time.

12:26 PM  

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