Saturday, November 22, 2008

Just because you read it in The Post doesn't mean it's true. Redwood Rocks.

Was anyone but me incensed with the review that ran for this restaurant in the Post? Please comment.
I'm not sure what happened there. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but I have to say that I think Tom was wrong. Dead wrong.
I have yet to have a bad meal or service here. I've been at Redwood at least six times since they opened and I am speaking from personal experience.
Tonight was a standard example. I went to Redwood for dinner with my extended family. My son was a little sugar deficient at the beginning of the meal and was in the dumps. Ash, our server, went above and beyond to try to get him to a good spot. At the end of the dinner, my son was at the other end of the spectrum as far as his blood sugars goes, as you'll notice in the pictures.
We started out with a very nice bottle of red, some chicken liver mousse and a salad.
I forgot to snap pix of those and dug in.
Moving on we shared the following items:
The short-rib chili. Always good. Great comfort food on a cold night.

The Red Snapper. Served on a potato pancake. Nice sauce. The fish was done perfectly and was crisped.

The Cioppini. I hadn't seen this dish before and was impressed. It was much better than the version I used to serve at Legal Seafoods. The soup had just enough kick. The inclusion of the head-on shrimp is interesting and gave my son something fun to play with at the table.

The Whole Rockfish. This dish was the star of the meal as far as I was concerned. The fish was done perfectly. The herbs they had stuffed in it perfumed the flesh nicely without being over-powering.

As for the blood-sugar dilemma, I'd say we had it taken care of with the S'mores. Yes, that is melted chocolate all over his face.
All in all, I'd say that this restaurant is a great reason to not believe everything you read in the papers. Don't believe what you read on blogs either...check it out for yourself.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

I'm usually not like this.....

However, this was too good to keep to myself.

Take a shot at the recipe below. If you click on it it should open up to a legible size. Don't leave this recipe lying around where little ones can read it as it contains foul language and violence that may discourage them from eating the dish.

This is a recipe for one of the best-tasting lobster dishes I've ever had, and one of the more impressive dishes I've ever made.

The flavors of this sauce and the way they come together is so good it will give you goose bumps. The richness of the cream and lobster is balanced perfectly by the four types of onions and the lemon finale. Make sure you have a nice crusty baguette as you'll want to dip.

The recipe comes from one of my favorite guys, Tony Bourdain, and is represented here without permission, straight from the Les Halles Cookbook.

Follow the instructions and take your time. The unpleasantness of tearing into a live lobster fades quickly when weighed against the taste of the finished product.

Rather than trying to cut the tail while it's still attached to the lobster, I suggest giving it a good twist and removing it from the rest of the animal before cutting. Don't try cutting the beast with your favorite knife unless it's very heavy-duty.

Thank you Tony.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Ben's Chili Bowl

So, I finally made it to Ben's Chili Bowl. Purveyor of half-smokes to the rich and famous. It's been around for a long time and unless they screw up really badly it will be here long after most of us are gone.
I had put off going to this establishment for years because it seems I'm always out of cash and they never had the technology to accept credit cards and there isn't a Chevy Chase ATM anywhere near it. That is exacerbated by the fact that I really like Ulah Bistro, which is right across the street, and they do accept credit cards.There is nothing surprising here. No venison chili with fresh chipotles that were hand-smoked by Native Americans in a yurt. No free-range chickens, no Kobe beef. Just your standard diner food.

Focused on chili, naturally.
How was it? Not bad. You know exactly what you're getting. The chili is a little pasty for me, but the half-smoke was good. The fries were great. Nice and crunchy, but not burnt.

Upon exiting, I was shocked to learn that they have decided not to use the their credit card processing capability. They can process them, but they choose not to. Interesting.
Best of luck.
Remember to bring cash, or be willing to pay the fee to use the ATM in their restaurant.