Sunday, June 7, 2009

Besh Wishes

Feeding marshmallows to alligators worked up our own appetites. We were glad we'd made a reservation at Restaurant August. The place was packed.
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Mr. Monkey was all smiles about getting seated immediately.

Chef John Besh won the 2006 James Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef in the Southeast, and it shows. He is also one of the chef-contestants on the highly anticipated Top Chef Masters, which premieres this Wednesday night. We were thrilled with our five-course tasting menu, which was a steal at just $75.

Amuse bouche of egg custard foam with caviar.
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Light, airy, and marvelous! We were both fiending for more! Great start!

Assiette of chilled Louisiana seafood -- crawfish boil en gelee, shrimp cocktail, and crabmeat ravigote.
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Amazing array of delights from the sea. We both loved the crab the most.

Warm salad of pied de veau --crispy veal sweetbreads, fresh hearts of palm, and black truffle.
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Crispy and like buttah. Perfect with the slightly tart dressing. Droooool.

Lacquered Berkshire pork belly with wild crawfish, olives, and blood orange.
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Succulent and decadent melange of flavors and textures. Excellent.

Slow-braised Wagyu beef short rib with two artichokes.
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Yes! Yes! Yes! Up until this point, Mr. Monkey continued to rave about the crabmeat ravigote. Then this beauty arrived. New favorite for Mr. Monkey. I agreed. This meat was melt-in-your-mouth awesomeness.

Napoleon of nougatine with Valhrona chocolate bavarois and salted toffee ice cream.
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I'm not one to go nuts over dessert, but I went nuts for this dessert. Simultaneously delicate and rich, this was unlike any napoleon I'd ever had. The different types of sweetness and a touch of salt swirled in my mouth. The pastry chef deserved a standing ovation.

Mignardise -- macarons and madeleines.
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Nothing to write home about, but still yummy and cute.

After dinner, we took a stroll down and around Bourbon Street.
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Where else can you get children's books and voodoo dolls in one place?

Next: Besh continues to impress.


  1. nice food AND nighttime shots! everything looks so good. i remember watching john besh and bemoaning how his name is very similar to john tesh. too bad.

  2. I'm so glad you FINALLY got around the eat crawfish - even if they were all "citified" ;-) And the tasting menu looks like they served you everything in perfect sizes.

    Bourbon Street looks like a scene even though it's far from Mardi Gras.

  3. what a deal for the tasting menu! I was on board except for the sweet breads, that one is all yours.

  4. Besh totally ripped the amuse off of T Keller. I'm telling! Btw, marshmallow eating alligators works up my appetite too.

  5. I <3 crawfish. So dang good. I love how yours is plated all nicely and delicately. Mine was just piled on top of a plastic plate :)

  6. pork belly seems to be a regular on your plates. i've never had it but i think i would love it.

  7. Every time Top Chef Masters shows a preview for the upcoming season and Mr. FGD sees it, he starts screaming as each chef's face whizzes by in the preview about their restaurant and whether he likes them or not. I can only imagine the scene at your house.

    I, on the other hand, am just wondering if hottie Tom Colicchio shows his sexay face this season.

  8. i think i want to move to new orleans.

  9. Very convenient. I wish I could find a good children's books/voodoo shop around here. That's what's wrong with L.A. (as opposed to LA)

  10. wow the photos look amazing! ^_^ After the wonderful evening meeting you at Church and State, it's great to meet *see* the Mr. Monkey you talked about! lol

    I am so jealous you guys are in New Orleans! Sounds like tons of fun! ^_-

  11. This is on our list of places to eat when we go back to NOLA. Because we *will* be going back ... just to eat!

  12. i'm seriously applauding the napoleon. it looks fantastic, as does the rest of your meal!

  13. I didn't even know what half the words in your post meant like ravigote & pied de veau. I think I need to go out more often.

  14. I know I sound like a broken record... but those pictures...
    I could literally taste that food. Wonderful.

  15. Excellent pictures. Man, I love tasting menus so. damn. much!


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