On to the entrees. The appetizers were delicious but this is where the restaurant truly excelled.
First, my favorite course of the evening, a shivery "Foie gras and cumin caramel". Imagine the most delicate creme brulee with the sinfully rich taste of foie. I wanted to lick the bowl.
The Caramel was served with a "twice cooked foie gras with spiced quince on brioche". The two together were dynamite.
"Scallop tartare with osetra caviar, watercress". An interesting contrast of flavors. The third tartare of the night.
"Horse mackerel with steelhead roe". I guess I'm still a kid at heart because I loved how the roe popped in my mouth.
"Brandade of cod surrounded by mashed potatoes with a potato chip in new oil". The mashers had a lovely taste but the texture was somewhat gluey. I've never been a fan of salt cod, so this was not one of my favorite dishes of the evening.
"Garbure of duck foie gras". Here the foie was served seared and still warm. I took a bite and knew it was delicious but it was just too late in the meal for me to enjoy such a rich dish. When I think back on it, I could make a meal of the three foie offerings doubled in size. And a lovely meal it would be.
My next course (not pictured) was "Monterey abalone with braised veal cheeks". The abalone was tough as it has been every time I have eaten it...I never need to eat abalone again. The veal cheeks were braised to perfect succulence and full of flavor.
The pic above was the Judge's "make-up" course. Since he, poor man, refuses to eat cheese or fish, he missed many courses. Just when he was starting to feel frustrated they brought him a prime filet with mashers and spinach. He was well appeased.
"Confit of suckling pig, cardooons, boudin noir". The picture shows the dish as it was presented to each diner prior to being served. A knock out dish.
" '36 hour' lamb shoulder with sweet garlic". I loved the way the garlic, which was very strong on its own, complimented the very tender lamb when tasted together. Two of my favorite things. I need to start experimenting with sous-vide cooking given it can produce dishes as flavorful as this.
So ended the savory dishes...desserts still to come. What an evening.