Restaurant Reviews

Pulpo August 2013

Disclosure: Two weeks ago I received an invitation to a complimentary tasting experience at Pulpo.  The restaurant recently hired Chef Billy Klein and radically reinvented their menu.  In the words of the invitation they now have “a vastly improved core menu, a top-flight craft cocktail program, greatly enhanced standards of service, and coming in Autumn; Billy Klein’s tasting menus and chef’s table.”  This all means that the meal you’re about to see was free but all of the opinions are my honest and non-influenced thoughts as well as those of my dining companions.  

We arrived a bit early for our 5pm reservation since we opted to take the Metro.  The restaurant is less than two blocks away from the Cleveland Park Metro station and, since parking is limited to street parking and I don’t parallel park, riding the Metro was easy and painless. The hostess was very friendly and happy to seat us right away.  She warned us that the brunch crew hadn’t completely left upstairs, so that it would be a bit noisy for a few more minutes, but I certainly didn’t notice an unpleasant volume.  Art, who is a bit sound sensitive, did notice the increased volume, but only when we were first seated.  During the rest of the meal the noise level in the restaurant was great for all of to enjoy each other’s company.  

The décor of the restaurant was really lovely.  It felt casual, relaxed, and architecturally interesting.  The exposed brick on the walls and the duct work on the ceiling was a nice touch.  There is plenty of seating on the first floor, including tables for parties as large as ten.  In the back of the downstairs dining area is a glass walled kitchen that allows you to see what’s going on.  Our table was a four top at the front of the restaurant with a huge window and plenty of light.  

We were given menus to peruse and our waiter, Kai, took our drink orders.  Brian ordered the manager’s special wine which is a Tempranillo.  I’m never sure if I should take and share pictures of wine, but here you go.  He enjoyed it!

I normally stick with water at restaurants due to my allergies, but our amazing waiter mentioned that they also had virgin cocktails and agua frescas.  Agua fresca?  Tell me more!  The three flavors they had that day were cucumber with lime and mint, mango, and watermelon.  Since I can’t eat mango or watermelon, the choice was easy for me.  The cucumber was amazing.  I ended up drinking three of them.  Delicious, sweet, bright, and ridiculously flavorful.  Did I mention that I drank three of these?!

The chef came to our table to introduce himself and give us an idea of his vision for the menu.  He’s aiming for a modern take on tapas with a goal to respect the high-quality ingredients that he starts with.  Lance and I had actually been to another tapas two weeks before with my parents and we could tell that the menu was much less traditional at Pulpo than it had been at the other place.  We also couldn’t help but note than Pulpo has significantly fewer offerings, which we’ve learned is always a positive sign for a restaurant.  

Then the food started coming.  I hadn’t been 100% sure that it was going to be a tasting menu, but I had complained to both Art and Lance that everything on the menu looked too good and I wasn’t going to be able to decide.  I’m glad I ended up not having to!  Neither Art nor Brian had ever had a tasting menu experience, so this made the whole experience even more exciting.  

Our first two dishes were the two gazpachos on the menu.  The green one is Asparagus Gazpacho with saffron soft-boiled egg and black caviar.  The red one is Sandia [Watermelon] Gazpacho with house-made ricotta.  Wow.  The saltiness of the caviar added a really nice flavor to go along with the delicious asparagus flavor.  The asparagus was really the star of the show that was enhanced by the egg and the caviar.  The sandia gazpacho was even better.  I’m not supposed to eat watermelon, but I had to try a taste of it anyway.  The house-made ricotta was so perfect and creamy.  This is actually the first time I’ve been sad that I can’t eat watermelon.  

Our third dish was the Bacon Brussel Sprouts.  I love Brussels sprouts and tend to order them whenever they’re on the menu.  And, without fail, I’m always disappointed.  They’re always over cooked and either taste like boiled or burnt cabbage.  These were amazing.  The outer leaves were crisp, the centers were tender but not mushy, the flavor was superb.  This, like every other plate of our meal, was demolished.  Apparently we have our server to thank for this one, since Kai suggested to the chef to include it as it’s one of Kai’s favorites.  Thank you, Kai!

Our fourth dish was one of the signature dishes.  Pulpo means octopus and this is Octopus prepared with quinoa, olives, oranges, and parsley.  None of us had ever eaten octopus before and Art does not eat seafood or fish.  However, he decided that he was going to try everything anyway – I was super impressed by him for this determination.  We all tried the octopus and we all loved it.  The flavor was fantastic, the texture was nicely chewy, the citrus and quinoa paired excellently with the octopus.  Art and Brian both enjoyed the olives as well.  This was a very well conceived dish and surprised us all.  I also like that this dish didn’t look scary - there wasn’t a big tentacle or baby octopus head on the plate.  Instead, there were just bite-sized pieces of meat in a pleasing presentation.  I think this is a good call on the chef’s part.  [Update: Brian actually has had octopus before.  He says that this octopus was very well cooked and not at all rubbery as the octopus he’s had in the past has been.]

Next out was Sea Scallops with sweetcorn puree, blistered padron peppers, and angry popcorn.  It’s worth mentioning that Brian is quite a lover of scallops and he tends to order then whenever they’re on a menu.  He said that these were the best he’s ever had and that Art will be spoiled forever.  I have eaten scallops before and I agree with Brian.  If all scallops were like this, I’d order them everywhere too!  The sear was perfection and they were supremely tender inside.  The sweetcorn puree and popcorn were both flavorful and Art claimed the peppers.  

Our sixth dish was the Chorizo Pate with avocado mousse and pickled cauliflower.  This was another amazing dish.  I loved the buttery creaminess of the avocado and the pickled bite of the cauliflower with the garlicky and spicy pate.  Another really well composed dish.  

Dish seven was ‘Ropa Vieja’ with black beans and tostones.  This is the dish where it could have all gone wrong since Art is a total brisket snob.  Yet again, though, Chef Billy hit it out of the park.  The flavor of the brisket was fantastic, the tostones were crisp and flavorful, and the black bean puree was awesome.  Normally bean purees can be so bland and boring, but this was neither of those things.  We had no idea what the tostones were and decided they must be fried potato things, but google tells me that they’re plantains.  They were extremely tasty and the three components of the dish really complimented each other.  

Then the Smoked Pork Tacos arrived with salsa verde and pickled radishes.  Another delicious meat dish.  The pork was super tender and flavorful and the radishes added a great crunch and bite to the dish.  These were served on corn tortillas.  

Our ninth dish was a slider platter.  For the record, sliders are really hard to split four ways.  If you’re going to attempt this, we found that removing the top bun first makes for easier cutting, otherwise the bun smooshes everything when you cut.  From left to right our sliders were lamb, octopus, and pork belly.  The pork belly had some sort of pickle and the octopus included cabbage, bravas sauce, and aioli.  I forgot to ask about the lamb slider.  Even though we all only had a small bite of each of these, we were all very impressed.  The meats were all just packed with flavor.  

Lucky dish number ten was the Mac and Cheese with manchego, cavatelli, sweet peas, and crispy Serrano ham.  Special mac and cheeses are another thing I’ve tried to order in restaurants from time to time and they’re always a let down.  The flavors tend to be unbalanced or, even worse, the pasta is mushy.  This mac and cheese was superb.  The pasta was perfectly cooked with a nice texture, the Serrano ham was very crispy and nicely salty.  The manchego added a rich, buttery, creamy sort of taste to every bite.  Even Lance loved this dish and he is not a mac and cheese lover.  Art felt that it was closer to a carbonara than a mac and cheese, but this is probably because he’s a bit picky about what things are called.  (For example, we have to call pizza with non-traditional toppings “flatbread with toppings” around him.  Since pizza is something very specific in his mind.) 

Brian ordered another glass of wine!  I don’t have a note of what this was because he ordered one type and our waiter, Kai, suggested that he try a different one due to the upcoming dishes.  I thought that was pretty cool and Art ended up getting a glass for himself as well!  I tried a taste and it had a peppery, spicy sort of bite to it.  Sadly I didn’t note the name of the wine.  

Our final entrée dish was the Paella.  This was a combination of saffron risotto, peas, shrimp, mussels, chorizo, scallop, and piquillo peppers.  Risotto is one of those delicious things that I love to eat.  However, my experiences with it in restaurants have been hit or miss.  The saffron risotto which formed the base of this dish was lovely.  The rice was perfectly cooked and delicious.  The chorizo and peppers flavored the entire dish and we divvied up the seafood.  Art even tried a mussel!  This was a very flavorful dish and I’m sure that a lover of seafood, rice, and paella would thoroughly enjoy it.  If I was forced to pick a least favorite dish, this would be it, but that would be an unfair designation since everything was so excellent.  This was too, it just had a combination of flavors that I’m not in love with.  

Our last dish, number twelve, was a dessert called Tres Leches v2.0.  It’s described on the menu as “Billy’s unique take on a standard angel food cake, goat cheese frosting, dulce de leche, sheep’s milk foam, blueberries, and crumble.”  So, in addition to the normal “three milks,” Chef Billy included the milk of three animals as well.  The variety of the milks helped to temper the sweetness of the components and this was a fantastic little dessert.  

As we were finishing our dessert, the chef came back out to talk with us and answer all of our questions.  We talked about high quality ingredients and pointed out the dishes that particularly impressed us.  He explained to Art his brisket process, which is a three-day process involving rubbing the meat an entire day before cooking it.  He also deep fries the Brussels sprouts which is what makes them the best I’ve ever had.  He took a good 10-15 minutes to answer our questions and chat, which was pretty grand.  The general manager, Dave, also came out to introduce himself at that point and let us know that the whole meal was on the house.  

This was a really amazing experience.  The amount of food we were given was perfect and the pacing was spot on.  We were all pleasantly full but didn’t feel stuffed.  The restaurant atmosphere was great and relaxed. They filled up as the evening went on and, from what we could see, every other table was receiving the same level of service that we were.  The service was great!  Our glasses were always full and Kai was knowledgeable, attentive, and friendly.  

This was the first tasting menu that Brian and Art have ever had and they were both super happy with the experience.  They’re both eager to go back again in the future and we’re hoping to make that happen before too much time passes by!  Just a quick glance at the menu and I see 10 things on the menu that I want to try and didn’t get to, not to mention all the things we had that I loved so much I want to eat again.  

This is a tapas restaurant, which means that plates are small and intended to be shared.  It’s normal for people to order 2 to 4 dishes each.  I felt that the dishes here, when compared to the other tapas place we had visited, were better composed and thought out.  While sharing does add to my personal enjoyment at a restaurant like this, I do think that a person would be completely satisfied to order their own plates and horde them.  I certainly had a few dishes I would have liked to keep all to myself!  

I highly recommend that you give Pulpo a try when you’re in the DC area.  It’s a super easy restaurant to get to from the Red Line and the food and service were stellar.  We will definitely dine here again in the future, and you should too.  

Total price: unknown.  We tipped $60 based on Lance’s quick math with the menu and our enjoyment.  

Pulpo Restaurant
3407 Connecticut Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20008

Reservations: 202.450.6875 (and OpenTable)

Pulpo on Urbanspoon

Kooma Sushi July 2012

In July, Lance and I were in Columbus for an event and we had an unplanned evening meal.  I did a bit of research to find a tasty place within walking distance, and decided upon Kooma Sushi.  Lance isn’t a sushi lover, but the menu looked robust enough that we’d both be happy with our options.  The location was also right, since it was a very easy walk from the convention center. 

foodDeep Fried Gyoza Meat and vegetable dumplings

We started off with dumplings to share.  They were super tasty, just the way they should be! 

foodMiso Soup

Then we got delicious bowls of miso soup, a sushi restaurant standard. 

Sirloin Beef HibachiSirloin Beef Hibachi

This was Lance’s entrée and it was huge!  Lots of perfectly done steak and a delicious assortment of vegetables. 

foodNegima Teriyaki

I opted for the Negima which is one of those things I’ve always wanted to try, but never seen on the menu.  It’s thinly sliced sirloin wrapped around green onions and cream cheese.  Quite tasty!  My fish also came with a lovely assortment of vegetables. 

foodFried Bananas

Lance decided to go for dessert, so he got this fried banana concoction.  I had a bite and it was yummy.  Bananas, strawberries, vanilla ice cream, and chocolate sauce. 

foodPhiladelphia Roll

I took a different route for dessert and got a Philly roll.  My favorite.  I figured it would be a shame not to get a sushi roll at a sushi restaurant.  It was scrumptious and I think I won the dessert battle! 

This was a really nice meal - nothing super fancy or expensive, the service was attentive and the atmosphere was cozy.  I think I chose wisely! 

Total price including tip: $64.31

Kooma Sushi
37 Vine Street
Columbus, OH 43215

Reservations: 614.224.3239

Kooma on Urbanspoon

Woodfire Grill June 2012

Earlier this year, Lance and I found out we’d be going back to Atlanta to work at an event.  I immediately went to Open Table to make a reservation at the fantastic Woodfire Grill.  This is Kevin Gillespie’s restaurant and we had the pleasure of eating there in January 2011.  It’s rare that we’re able to be repeat customers at any restaurant outside of Indianapolis

I’m pretty sure they keep notes on their customers because when they called to verify the reservation they mentioned my HFCS allergy and, once we were seated, our server mentioned that she knew we didn’t drink wine but asked if we’d like anything else.  That’s a neat touch – to be remembered. 

We opted, again, for the 7-course chef’s grand tasting menu.  We had no idea what to expect, but were happy to trust the chefs.  We were asked if we had a problem with raw fish, so that gave us a hint of what was to come. 

breadOur meal started with a lovely basket of small rolls and herbed butter.  The bread was warm and delicious. 

foodAmuse Compressed Georgia peach, cucumber, ginger ale foam.

These were like little bites of gazpacho.  Fruity, light, and refreshing.

foodFirst Course North Carolina fluke crudo, caramelized orange, spiced yoghurt, roasted pistachio, pickled fennel.

This was our raw fish!  I’ve never had fluke and it was tasty.  I did find the orange zest strips to be a bit unbalanced, but every other bite was great. 

foodSecond Course Crispy north Carolina trout, spicy chow chow with pork rinds, Alabama white barbecue sauce.

This trout was delicious.  I could have eaten an entire meal just of it, in fact.  The crispness was thanks to a very light cornmeal coating and the other components worked very well together.  I especially enjoyed the white barbecue sauce.

foodThird Course Pan seared georges bank scallop, sweet corn with morel mushroom ragout, celery, sweet herbs.

This was a HUGE scallop that was seared to perfection.  I’m not a scallop lover, but the ones I’ve had at Woodfire make me think I should be.  The sweetness of the corn was awesome and I was thrilled to have morels for the first time. 

foodTaste Chilled carrot ginger soup with fresh orange

Our “intermezzo” in a shot glass.  It was shocked at how clearly all three of the components came through.  I could really taste the orange, the ginger, and the carrot. 

foodFourth Course Wood grilled plantation quail with caramelized honey-nectarine glaze, roasted turnips, local haricot verts, toasted pecans.

I should note that they gave us a menu to take home, so I’m not writing all of this down from memory!  We had quail last time at Woodfire, so I was happy to get it again.  They’re super teeny and mostly boned aside from the legs.  The quail was very tender and the green beans were great too! 

foodFifth Course Smoked pork loin and slow cooked pork belly, charred Georgia peach, roasted frisee, braised house made pepper bacon, spicy peanuts, peach quince agrodolce.

The pork course!  Pork belly really is this amazing, meltingly delicious thing of beauty.  The bacon was pretty grand too, nice and peppery. 

foodSixth Course Wood grilled all natural lamb loin, slow roasted eggplant, braised plum tomatoes, skillet fried shishito peppers, sauce bercy.

It’s interesting that we didn’t have any cow during the tasting menu, but I’m always happy to get lamb instead.  What a super flavorful few bites this was and it came with a peeled eggplant and tomato bite as well.  I admit, I was hoping for more tomatoes, but I’ll take what I can get!

foodPre dessert Raspberry sorbet

WOAH, super raspberry. 

foodDessert Valrhona caramelia milk chocolate, buttermilk ice cream, crushed peaches, buttermilk cake, white peach fluid gel, peanut crisp.

This was like a deconstructed peach shortcake with a chocolate caramel.  The caramel was like the absolutely perfect, soft Tootsie Roll.  The ice cream had a great buttermilk tartness to it and the peach was delicious too. 

foodI didn’t try one of these since they’re mango, which I shouldn’t eat, but they reminded me of Turkish delight in texture.  Lance thought it was fine. 

This was a lovely, lovely meal.  The service was phenomenal, every course was perfectly paced, we were never without almost full glasses of water and every dish was presenting knowledgeably and thoroughly.   I also think that this is a very reasonably priced tasting menu – if you’re ever in Atlanta, I recommend that you stop by. 

Total price, no alcohol, including tip: Around $240

Woodfire Grill
1782 Cheshire Bridge Road
Atlanta, GA 30324

Reservations: 404.347.9055

Woodfire Grill on Urbanspoon

Maaemo May 2012

A few months ago, Lance read about a restaurant in Oslo called Maaemo.  In March 2012 it was awarded two Michelin stars.  This is the first time a Nordic restaurant has received two stars right off the bat in its first inclusion in the guide.  The restaurant focuses on local ingredients and certainly falls into the category of modernist cuisine.  We had been bouncing around the idea of fine dining while in Norway and this announcement seemed like a good sign. 

Lance worked hard to secure us a reservation and we were thrilled to be able to dine at Maaemo on May 30th, one of the last days of our trip.  Lance’s dad was kind enough to drive us to the restaurant, but, since it’s right across from the bus terminal in Oslo, we took the bus back to the house after our meal. 

I’m hoping the pictures will do a lot of speaking for themselves because I can’t possibly do this meal justice with my words.  It was just too amazing and complex and astounding.  This certainly counts as the most dramatic culinary experience of my life. 


We were greeted by our menu, a napkin, and a water glass.  The menu was a square of paper, folded up.  (I’m going to deviate from my usual review pictures and use larger ones here.) 


Unfolded, it listed the names of our nine courses as well as the alcoholic drink pairings, and the pricing.  There was also a non-alcoholic drink pairing but the names of those drinks weren’t listed.  I opted for water, since we knew most of the non-alcoholic drinks were juices, but Lance went with the non-alcoholic drink pairing. 


Once our first (of three) servers came over, Lance got an English menu for me and we were given little marble blocks to keep our menus in.  Apparently these are blocks leftover from the Opera House construction.  (After Lance asked for the English menu, all of the course descriptions from our servers were in English which was quite a relief for Lance who had been worried that he’d have to translate everything for me!)


I’m pretty sure we had the best seats in the house.  Our table gave us a perfect view of the kitchen above and we could see the chefs working hard throughout the meal.  I was even able to see the saucier taste sauces!  Super neat!  This picture also shows the spiral staircase that our servers had to walk up and down a billion times with their loaded wooden trays of food. 


Our menu listed nine courses, but it neglected to note the other nine “tastes” we’d be getting before and after the nine listed courses.  This was the first of those 18(!!) courses.  These were little cream cheese (called nýr) and fish egg bites.  They were served on a frozen rock so the very bottom layer of the goat cheese was solid while the rest was creamy.  The cheese was wonderfully tangy and the roe burst in our teeth. 


Our second course was the thinnest potato chips I’ve ever seen.  They were served with a warm aioli that was rich and eggy.  We tried to scoop as much of the sauce as possible onto each of our chips, I would have licked the bowl if there weren’t other people around. 


The chips were served in this metal maple leaf.  All of the dishes of the meal were impressive and unique and I think all of them had some aspect of nature incorporated into them. 


Our third course was little teeny scallops with a teenier dollop of fish eggs and a leaf of tarragon.  It was served in a scallop shell.  This was another delicious bite and the roe was much larger than the roe in the first dish, so we got even bigger bursts in our teeth!  The dish came to us under a glass cloche filled with wood smoke to remind us of the woods. 


We had forks for the scallops, the first silverware of the meal.  I’m sure you noticed there was none waiting for us when we were seated, every single course came with its own silverware.  This turned out to be a good thing, since we never needed to try to figure out what to eat each course with – we just used whatever silverware we’d been delivered right before the course. 


Our fourth course was smoked reindeer heart.  The server brought out the large piece of meat and carved off a slice for each of us at the table.  It was served in little wooden spoons.  We both felt that this tasted a lot like prosciutto or bacon, or some other smoked meat.  It was tender and tasty. 


Here is another picture of the kitchen and shows the dining room a bit more.  There was table space for around 30 diners and there were about 25 in the restaurant when we were there.  (And only five women, which was surprising to me.  Blue shirts with or without jackets were a popular choice for the men.)  On the left side of the picture, you can see the wall of glasses.  It was fun to watch the glasses diminish as the meal went on.  The serving was staggered, so we weren’t all getting the same course at exactly the same time. 


Our fifth course featured even more roe!  My notes for this say “roe w/ green stuff” so I’m not sure exactly what the leaves are.  This roe was even larger than the previous two types and equally delicious. 


Our sixth course was braised apples with chicken pâté served on top of a bundle of thyme.  This was a neat reversal of the foie gras I’ve gotten in recent restaurant trips which is normally served with some sort of fruit component.  Here, we got the braised apple served with a bit of the pâté instead.  The two ingredients paired super well. 


For the seventh course we had Norwegian cucumbers with a mackerel infused sauce.  I thought they looked like green grapes. 


It was served in a huge bowl and the sauce definitely tasted of fish.  Very strange combination of flavors, but it was quite tasty. 


The restaurant had a little bookcase that looked like a shrine to Modernist Cuisine.  I had to take a picture of it.  If we could have seen through the buildings out of that window, we would have seen the swarming Justin Bieber fans. 


Our eight course was fascinating.  It was some sort of thin disk of oyster that had somehow been emulsified and then sauced tableside with a horseradish and dill cream sauce.   


The oyster had a wonderful natural sweetness to it. 


And it was served in this strange bowl that was hollow and filled with an oyster shell and seaweed.  It was beautiful and scrumptious. 


Since that wrapped up the “tastes,” Lance was delivered his first drink.  This was apple and plum juice. 


Our ninth course, the first course listed on the menu, is a Maaemo classic called Last Year’s Spruce & Langustine (Gran Fra I Fjor & Sjøkreps).  This is the most dramatic dish I’ve ever been served.  From the top down, there was a langoustine with a sweet apple sauce drizzled over it, served on a rock, which was on top of a bed of spruce branches, which was then in a bowl that must have had dry ice in the bottom. 


The server poured water into the bowl after placing it on the table which caused smoke to pour out over the entire table surface.  It was gorgeous and just plain fun!  We were instructed to eat with our fingers and given a wet towel to wipe our hands with during the course.  The sweetness of the sauce was great and even though I’m not a lover of seafood, I ate every bite and proceeded to lick my fingers too. 


Lance’s second drink was apple.  I had a teeny sip and it seemed almost like apple cider. 


Our tenth course, the second from the menu, was named Ramson (Ramsløk).  Since being home, I’ve learned that these are known as ramps as well. 


This was Lance’s plate.  The white flowers are ramson flowers and they’re covering little slices of mackerel.  Due to natural variations, sometimes our plates were complete different in coloring. 


The green rounds were ramson leaves and I’m not sure what the sauce was, it was nice and vinegary.  I really enjoyed this dish and the delicate oniony flavors. 


Next we were given a placemat of parchment, a wooden knife, and a little crock of butter. 


Lance was delivered his third drink which was something like a tomato juice made from rose hips. 


Then our eleventh course was brought out and we understood the need for a placemat!  This dish, the third on the menu, is named simply Wheat (Hvete).  The menu names weren’t very informative, eh? 


The little rolls were served to us on this seed covered mill stone and the seeds included sesame, poppy, flax, and pumpkin.   We ate these little rolls with the whipped salted butter from Røros.  The warm rolls are made from wheat, spelt and emmer flours and the bread had a slight sourdough taste to it.  It was fun to see this dish come to larger parties since it was delivered on larger sections of mill stone.  The butter was so light and airy.  If society hasn’t taught me that eating butter plain is wrong, I would have scraped the crock clean. 


Lance’s fourth drink was cranberry and mint.  Yum. 


Our twelfth course came to us on huge plates and, sadly, we started eating it before I remembered to take pictures!  Luckily Lance hadn’t eaten too much, so he was able to take this picture. 


And this one too.  This dish, the fourth on the menu, was called Burned Northern Halibut (Brent Kveite).  It was served with onions that had some sort of gel inside and was very flavorful.  Flavorful enough that we almost forgot to take pictures! 


Our first knife!  This was kind of a big deal. 


At this point, our server brought out a chicken and told us a bit about it.  The chicken is surrounded by the flora of Oslo.  We said hi to it before it was returned to the kitchen.  Then we made a number of jokes about the “demo chicken.” 


Lance’s fifth drink was apple and red currant. 


Our thirteenth course, the fifth on the menu, was named Cabbage & Caramelized Onion (Kål & Karamelisert Løksaft).  The bowl for this dish was especially lovely!  It included a cabbage puree, chicken heart, and was topped with ramson cream as well as some leaves and flowers.  It was fantastic.  I can’t believe I ate heart twice in this meal and loved it both times. 


This was Lance’s sixth drink and neither of us can remember what it was!  I think it might have been straight cranberry juice, but even after the meal we couldn’t recall.  Clearly I need to start taking notes while at the restaurant. 


Here’s another picture of the kitchen.  You can kind of see the demo chicken pot on the front right corner of that middle table. 


You can see it even better here!


And speaking of chicken, we finally got to eat the chicken in our fourteenth course.  This course, the sixth on the menu, was named The Flora of Oslo (Skogens Flora Akkurat Nå). 


This dish was gorgeous.  All of the flowers were edible and it was topped with a stock cream sauce.  (The sauce was added tableside by our server, as all of the sauces were throughout the meal.)  The variety of flowers meant that every single bite was new, exciting, and completely different than the bite before.  The chicken was tender and juicy.  I loved this dish a lot. 


We actually both got the seventh drink which was Small-Leaved Linden Cold Brew (Lendeblomst).  I thought this tea was quite nice and reminiscent of a green tea.  It left my mouth feeling dry.  Lance didn’t care for it much. 


Our fifteenth course was the beginning of the dessert courses.  This course, the seventh on the menu, had the enlightening name of Birch (Bjørk).  It came in a pretty wooden bowl set on top of a stone.  The leaves were birch leaves and the stuff that looks like dirt underneath the ice cream had a distinctly chocolate flavor.  The ice cream itself tasted sort of the way a popsicle stick tastes when you lick it.  I enjoyed it, but I pretty much love all ice cream.  Lance wasn’t super thrilled by any of the dessert courses. 


Lance’s eight drink was strawberry and rhubarb!  It was tasty. 


Our sixteenth course, the eight on the menu, was Rhubarb (Rabarbra & Geitemelk).  Clearly the English name is lacking because it left off the goat milk part that the Norwegian contains! 


This dish had little rhubarb gel blobs, flowers (which I assume are related to rhubarb somehow) and a piece of rhubarb that had been cooked somehow underneath the flowers.  The ice cream was made from goat milk and rocked, it helped to temper the bitterness of the other components. 


Lance’s ninth, and last, drink was maple.  It actually tasted like maple syrup with the consistency of water. 


Our seventeenth course, the ninth and last on the menu, was named Butter From Røros (Smør Fra Røros).  Strange name for a dessert, right? 


This was, hands down, the best dessert I’ve ever had in a restaurant.  The ice cream was made from butter, served on top of a shortbread type hazelnut butter crumble, which was topped with a dollop of buttery molasses, and then a warm brown butter sauce was spooned over top.  It was served to us in stages.  First we got the bowl with the butter crumble in it.  Then a chef spooned out a perfect quenelle (with one spoon!) of ice cream on top and then our server spooned the brown butter on top of that.  The brown butter hardened like Magic Shell.  It was astounding.  Rich, creamy, buttery, perfection.  This is yet another bowl I would have licked clean. 


Our eighteenth and final course wasn’t on the menu, but it took us back to where we started.  This time we were given something that tasted like an orange creamsicle.  The orange in the middle this time was orange gel and I’m not sure what the white stuff was.  Like the first time around, this was served on a freezing cold rock and we ate it with our fingers. 


It also came with a thing that looked like a chocolate truffle, but I forgot to take a picture of it before I ate it.  Just imagine a chocolate truffle ball here.  This was… interesting and we were told to pop it all into our mouth at once.  The reason is that it wasn’t a chocolate truffle at all, but a watery, liquid center of caramel surrounded by a hard coffee shell.  It was quite strong and I had to drink a bunch of water to get all of the coffee flavor out of my mouth!  Art would have loved this and, if he had been with us, I would have given him mine to make up for all of the fish. 

We were given a little Maaemo branded paper goodie bag to take along.  It included a copy of the menu as well as a baggie of honey candies.  Those were brought home for Art so that he could have a little taste of Maaemo too. 

And that brings this review to a close.  Eighteen courses of awesome along with phenomenal service and ambiance.  The meal was extremely well paced and took a little over three hours.  We never felt rushed and could see the chefs looking down on us to check our progress from time to time.  The restaurant felt very relaxed and comfortable, the servers were clearly knowledgeable about the food they were delivering to us, and it was like a well choreographed and rehearsed dance of trays going up and down the spiral staircase while the chefs prepared delights for us above.  If I’m ever in Oslo again, I would not hesitate to return to Maaemo.  Not even for a second. 

Total price, which was delivered to us on another folded brown and blue piece of paper:  2970 NOK (at the time of posting that’s about $500 USD)

Schweigaards gate 15B
0191 Oslo

Phone: 919 94 805

Gaylord Opryland March 2012

In March, Lance and I had the pleasure of working at an event in the Gaylord Opryland in Nashville, TN.  This is an amazing place.  It’s the largest non-casino hotel in the US and covers about 9 acres of land.  Inside, in addition to the rooms, convention rooms, shops, and restaurants there are also rivers, waterfalls, plants, and fish.  It’s a gorgeous space. 

The one downside is that once you’re in the biodome, you’re sort of stuck there due to the size of the venue and the size of the grounds surrounding it.  As a result, we ate all of our meals within the hotel.  The good side is that our meals were super tasty.  The bad side is that our meals were also super expensive.  I’m going to combine them in this one post instead of making a separate post per meal – two of our meals were quite brief!

Lunch at Wasabi’s Sushi Bar

bentoSalmon Teriyaki Bento Box With California Roll, Gyoza, Tuna Tataki, Tamago Nigiri, and Citrus

We got to the venue early enough that we hadn’t eaten lunch yet, but not late enough that we were ready for our dinner reservation.  Lance suggested that we hunt down lunch and shift our dinner reservation to later in the evening.  I opted for Wasabi’s since we’d passed it on the way in and it looked like it had a tasty menu.  Lance isn’t a huge lover of sushi but, thankfully, there were bento boxes on the menu.  He and I both had the same one and it was the best bento boxes I’ve ever had. 

We were able to swap out the California Roll with my favorite, the Philadelphia Roll.  The chef let us do this because we were both ordering the same thing.  The tamago was lovely, the gyoza were crisp and full of great flavors, and the tataki rocked.  The downside of this meal is that it was $60 for the both of us.  Gulp! 

Dinner at Old Hickory Steakhouse Restaurant


This meal started out with an assortment of breads and some crispy rosemary cracker things. 

carpaccioBlack & Blue Beef Carpaccio Arugula salad & cracked pink peppercorns

We started off our meal with this carpaccio appetizer.  I’ve never had carpaccio before so I was eager to try it.  The presentation made it more like a salad with some carpaccio accents – we would have liked more carpaccio with our arugula, but it was still delicious. 

foieFoie Gras Torchon Reisling-poached duck foie gras, lemon cornbread cake & blackberry jam

Then we shared the foie appetizer.  It was very different from the other foie dishes I’ve had in restaurants and seemed more like pate to me.  It was also very sweet due to the jam and cornbread.  This almost felt like a dessert dish than an appetizer, but it was certainly tasty. 

saladTomato Salad Heirloom Tomatoes, Arugula, Goat Cheese, Charred Onions, Tomato Vinaigrette

My salad featured yet more arugula.  I swapped out the blue cheese for goat cheese, since I’m a fan of the latter and not the former.  It was a very tasty salad and the tomatoes were great. 

saladOld Hickory Caesar Hearts of Romaine, Creamy Garlic Dressing, Sour Dough Crisps

Yet another restaurant that falls prey to uncut salad – Lance’s pet peeve in a salad.  He still enjoyed it but how much can you really say about a Caesar salad? 

steakNY Strip With Shiitake Mushroom and Bacon Ragout

I opted to be different and order a NY Strip instead of my usual filet mignon.  I think I did this because I wanted a change and because the filet seemed small so I knew that Lance would be happy to share the strip with me once I ate what I wanted.  It was great and the ragout/jam type topping was nicely flavored.  It also came with a head of roasted garlic.  Yum. 

asparagusAsparagus & Hollandaise Sauce Sauce Foyot

Yet again, I ordered asparagus since I’m really loving it these days.  This asparagus was delicious and came with a great hollandaise sauce.  My steak also came with Sauce Foyot which was a nice one for me.  It’s a béarnaise sauce with meat glaze added and also went nicely with the asparagus. 


These need no explanation, they were tasty!

steakFilet Mignon Peppercorn Sauce

Lance ordered the filet with the peppercorn sauce and loved it.  He thought the sauce was great and he’s not normally a sauce person at all.  His steak also came with a head of roasted garlic.  Yum. 

We opted to skip dessert here, since none of them were a) appealing or b) nut-free.  We did end up getting ice cream at the Haagen Dazs place on the island across from our table.  Not a bad way to end a meal. 

This was a really great place to eat a meal.  The restaurant was in the middle of the biodome and our table was in the “outdoor” eating area.  Even though we were technically inside, we had streetlights and the sound of waterfalls to go along with our meal.  Very pleasant atmosphere, enjoyable meal, and great service.  I’m pleased with our choice to dine here.

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Breakfast at Cascades American Café Restaurant

breakfastThe Cascades All-American Two Eggs, Cooked to Order, Fresh Biscuit, Crispy Potatoes, Bacon

In my day to day life, I’m not a big breakfast eater, but, as I tell people when I’m working events, it’s the most important meal of the day because it’s the only one I can ensure that I get.  Lance and I both ordered the same thing and it was a tasty, if standard, breakfast.  There were koi swimming next to our table which made it very pretty. 

Other Meals
I have no pictures of other meals, but we did eat them!  We tried out Fuse Sports Club for dinner and we ordered extra food to keep in our room fridge for breakfasts.  We also got lunches from Stax Burgers and Paisano’s Pizzaria

Overall, the food at the Gaylord Opryland was great and of all the places to be stuck, you could do much worse than here! 

Total price: lots.

Gaylord Opryland
2800 Opryland Drive
Nashville, TN 37214

Phone: 615.889.1000

St. Elmo Steak House March 2012

Ah, St. Elmo - my favorite restaurant in downtown Indianapolis.  I had rare pleasure of being able to eat at St. Elmo on my actual birthday this year!  Normally we’re only in Indy in August, but this year we had an event in March as well.  My birthday conveniently fell on the day of the event we knew we’d be finished early with, so I was able to secure a reservation for us at St. Elmo.  On my birthday!  Super exciting! 

shrimpWorld Famous St. Elmo Shrimp Cocktail

We both started out with the insane shrimp cocktail.  It’s insane because the cocktail sauce is horseradish with some red stuff.  It’s a delicious challenge.  I didn’t finish all of my shrimp, but Lance was happy to help. 

saladBLT Salad

Lance had his favorite BLT Salad, which I feel has changed since we first had it so many years ago.  Now it comes with a choice of dressing and no blue cheese.  This makes him happier, but I can never remember the dressing I liked best!  The bacon comes in the form of lovely, big pieces and the tomatoes were great for March. 

saladCaesar Salad

I’m glad I waited to get a Caesar at St. Elmo instead of at Harry and Izzy’s the night before!  Those anchovies are awesome!  This was a great salad, just what I hope every Caesar will be. 

soupNavy Bean Soup

Every entrée comes with the choice this soup or a cup of tomato juice.  Lance normally skips both and I do too, but this time I decided to try the soup due to the suggestion a friend had made to me at the event.  She told me that mixing the leftover horseradish sauce from the shrimp into the soup makes it rock.  I tried that, and she was right!  Great taste sensation that really helps to elevate the soup. 

filetBone-In Filet

Every restaurant we go has filet mignon, but they don’t all have bone-in filet.  Perfect as always.  Rare toward the bone, medium rare in the middle.  I love this stuff.  Mine came with mashed potatoes but I don’t think I ate more than a bite. 


I love asparagus.  I order it whenever I can these days.  I ate these like fries, with my fingers, dipped in the hollandaise sauce.  I’m so uncouth. 

filetBone-In Filet

Lance also got the bone-in filet and he felt his was a bit less than perfect – it was too rare near the bone for him so he’s going to try to remember to order medium next time instead of medium-rare.  His fries were better than the Harry and Izzy fries! 

pieSugar Cream/Hoosier Pie

We both got dessert to take back to the hotel since we were full at the restaurant.  Lance ordered his normal HUGE chocolate cake which you can see in previous reviews.  I decided to try something new and got this sugar cream pie.  The water described it as being sort of like the creamy part of crème brulee in a pie shell and that seems like a pretty accurate description.  It is more sugary than the crème brulees I’ve had, but it was delicious and I ate every bite.  I’m glad I tried something new this time! 

This was another great meal at St. Elmo and I’ll be sad when we can no longer take our yearly pilgrimages to Indianapolis.  The service was excellent, as always, and the experience was flawless.  I’m super excited for our next trip to St. Elmo which will be Art’s first visit!  Woo! 

Total price: Unknown. 

St. Elmo Steak House
127 S. Illinois St.
Indianapolis, IN. 46225

Phone: 317.635.0636

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Harry & Izzy's March 2012

Lance and I were in Indianapolis for an event in March and we decided to give Harry and Izzy’s a go for dinner since it was an easy walk from our venue.  I’m glad that we did, because the last time we ate there we were pretty rushed since our dinner was before our shift began.  This time, we had the option to be more leisurely. 

soupFrench Onion Soup

It was super chilly when we were in Indy this time, quite a change from our normal August trips!  I needed to warm up after the walk, so I started off with a bowl of French Onion soup.  I love a good bowl of the stuff and this did not disappoint.  It was rich and velvety with a nice crouton and cheese.  It was also hot so it fit the bill!

saladCaesar Salad

Lance ordered the Caesar and I don’t think I tried a bite!  He enjoyed it though and the dressing was nice. 

tunaSeared Tuna sesame seed crusted, with sushi rice & soy cilantro ginger sauce

I wasn’t super hungry, so I ordered the tuna from the appetizer menu for my entrée.  I’m glad I did since this turned out to be the perfect amount of food.  There is wasabi on this plate as well, but it’s hidden behind the sauce.  The sushi rice was lovely, the tuna was gorgeous, and I loved every bite.  The fish was a bit on the spicy side, but I managed!

chickenGrilled Chicken Breast with a side of bbq sauce

Lance ordered the grilled chicken and was expecting a smallish breast like the ones I make at home.  Instead, he got something twice the size!  It was delicious and moist, with great seasoning.  Lance felt the fries were undercooked so our server brought out a new plate of them.  Sadly, the new ones were the same so perhaps undercooking is just the way fries are prepared here?  Kudos to the service, though! 

Overall, the food was really tasty.  I loved my tuna and Lance’s chicken was lovely.  Our service wasn’t quite as awesome as it could have been, I had to steal Lance’s water when my glass was empty – not a good thing when you’re eating something a bit spicy!  We were also in a room with a number of very loud and raunchy parties.  But, the food was delicious.  I love Indianapolis. 

Total price: Unclear

Harry & Izzy’s
153 S. Illinois St.
Indianapolis,IN 46225

Phone: 317.635.9594

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Founding Farmers Park Potomac February 2012

Art’s birthday is in February and one of his favorite restaurants is Founding Farmers.  We had heard that the owners had opened a new location in Park Potomac, and, thinking that it would be the same as the DC location, we decided to go with the suburban location since the travel time would be about the same. 

Sadly, I am made of fail and did not read through the menu in its entirety which means the fish bowl of mousse Art had his heart set on was unavailable at the Potomac location.  Thankfully he was a trooper and persevered in the face of adversity. 

Brian joined us for Art’s birthday meal, but he was a bit late so we went ahead and guessed at what to order for appetizers. 

lollisBacon Lollis and Tater Tots

We’ve loved the bacon lollis at the DC location, and knew we had to get them again.  This location also has homemade tater tots and that’s a combination of words I can’t say no to.  I love tater tots!  These were all grand and the presentation was unique. 

flatbreadFlatbread Tomatoes, Goat Cheese, Pickled Red Onion

We had eyed the flatbreads at the DC location and decided to go ahead and try them here.  The only downside to this appetizer is that there were only 3 breads and 4 of us!  But the do-it-yourself assembly worked well and all of the ingredients went well together. 

skirt steakSkirt Steak Chimichurri Sauce

This was my entrée.  As I’ve mentioned before, I love skirt steak.  This was nicely prepared and the sauce was lovely.  I was a bit disappointed that the seasonal veggie side was potatoes.  Two sides of potatoes isn’t really my ideal arrangement.  There were a few carrots in with the roasted potatoes and those were tasty. 

chickenFried Chicken and Waffles Mac and Cheese, Chef’s Vegetables

Art and Brian both ordered the chicken and waffles.  This is because they are both weird.  From what I could tell they were both happy with their choice – the waffles were crispy and so was the chicken.  The mac and cheese wasn’t a winner, but I’ve learned that restaurant mac and cheese rarely is.  Their veg was also the roasted root vegetable assortment that I received. 

filetGrilled Center Cut 8oz Filet

Lance ordered the filet and it also came with sides of potatoes and more potatoes.  The steak was prepared nicely. 

breadSkillet Honey Butter Cornbread

Art had wanted to order the biscuits, but they were out of them for the evenings so he ordered the cornbread instead.  It was just as delicious as it is at the DC location and I love the little corn bits!

Carrot CakeFarmer Marcy’s Carrot Cake Bourbon Caramel Pecan Ice Cream

Art got the carrot cake and didn’t like it very much.  I guess there are multiple kinds of carrot cake and this is the kind that Art’s not a fan of.  Sad times. 

cakeFlourless Chocolate Cake Vanilla Ice Cream, Berries

Lance’s dessert was also a bit of a letdown.  He said the cake tasted stale, like it had been made a few days before instead of fresh on the spot. 

peanut butter pieChocolate Peanut Butter Pie Caramel Corn Cluster, Chocolate Sauce

Thankfully the dessert tide turned with Brian’s dessert which looked insanely amazing.  I tried a little bite and it was like a big, huge Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup.  I almost had dessert envy. 

beignetsUncle Buck’s Beignets Raspberry, Chocolate and Caramel Sauces

I didn’t have dessert envy, though, because my dessert was awesome.  The beignets were fresh, hot, little dough balls of awesomeness.  I went with triple chocolate sauce since I’m not a fan of either berry sauces or caramel.  I’d go back just for these beignets – or I should learn how to make them myself.  So delicious!  I couldn’t finish them all so I got a little take away box and they were just as tasty cold later.  Yum. 

The service at the new location was certainly great and there were some great aspects to our meal.  Sadly some of the desserts and entrees were lackluster, which is surprising after such great experiences at the DC location.  I think that, in the future, we’ll stick to the DC location even if the travel is a bit of a pain.  I would, however, really like to go back for their breakfast or brunch since those menus look awesome!

Total price: Unknown

Founding Farmers – Park Potomac
12505 Park Potomac Avenue
Potomac, MD 20854

Phone: 301.340.8783

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Tramonto’s Steak and Seafood February 2012

In early February, Lance and I were invited to go out to Chicago for a planning meeting.  We ended up being able to make the trip work and, since we didn’t have any plans Friday evening, I tracked down a restaurant.  I picked Tramonto’s because I remembered seeing Rick Tramonto on Top Chef Masters.  

olivesOur meal started off with some olives… which neither of us tried. 

breadAnd a nice assortment of breads.  I like the trend of pretzel rolls in restaurants, they’re quite tasty!

foieSeared Hudson Valley Foie Gras Asian pear, goji berry, port wine reduction

Due to Tramonto’s involvement in the foie controversy in Chicago some years back, I knew I had to get it.  This foie was rich and velvety.  The sweetness of the sauce complemented the foie quite well. 

slidersKobe Beef Sliders Black pepper bacon, Wisconsin smoked cheddar, roasted garlic aioli

Lance thought these were amazing and I think we might have come to blows had I tried to snag a bite.  They were juicy and he devoured them.  There were there of them, but you just get a picture of one!

SpinachSpinach Goat cheese, red onion, bacon, spiced pecans

This was a super tasty salad although I forget which dressing I had with it.  I think it was a sherry vinaigrette which was well balanced.  The pecans were a little bit sweet and added a nice textural component to the salad. 

saladSimple House Bibb lettuce, roasted tomato, tarragon, chives, ciabatta crouton

Lance had a house salad and, sadly, it suffered the same problem many salads do for him – the lettuce wasn’t cut up!  He prefers salads where the components are all bite sized before he gets it.  Regardless, it was a tasty salad. 

steakChar-Broiled Skirt Steak Red wine sauce, forest mushroom topper

I ordered the skirt steak because it’s my favorite cut of cow these days. Whenever I have the chance to get it, I do. It was nicely done and I enjoyed every bite.  I found the mushrooms to be a bit much, but they were easy enough to push to the side. 

friesMy meal came with fries, which Lance and I shared. 

sproutsWood Oven Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Housemade Bacon

I had my heart set on this side before even getting to the restaurant and it was a letdown, sadly.  The bacon tasted overcooked as did the sprouts.  A few pieces of the bacon were lovely, but they mainly tasted overcooked. 

steakBone-in Filet Bearnaise sauce

Lance enjoyed his filet and it was well cooked. 

dessertMolten dark Chocolate Soufflé Toasted marshmallow ice cream

Lance loves molten chocolate cakes, so this was a no brainer for him to order.  The ice cream really did taste like toasted marshmallow!  The cake was so rich, though, that he wished he had another scoop of ice cream.  He wasn’t able to finish the whole dessert. 

lemon sorbetHouse Made Meyer Lemon Sorbet

This was mouth puckeringly delicious.  I could only eat about one scoop because of how intense it was!  Great, tart, intense lemon flavor.  I loved it. 

This was a very nice meal.  While the meal had some lowlights (the Brussels sprouts), it also had some great highlights (the steaks, appetizers, and desserts).  The service was grand and my water glass was always refilled when I wanted it to be.  I’m not sure we’ll ever go back, since I’ve got my heart set on Alinea for our next Chicago trip, but I would be happy to recommend it to people in search of a nice steakhouse. 

Total price: $156.63

Tramonto’s Steak and Seafood
601 N. Milwaukee Avenue
Wheeling, Illinois 60090

Phone: 847.777.65758

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Emeril’s Tchoup Chop January 2012

Back in January, right after Williamsburg in fact, Lance and I went to Orlando for a weekend event.  Due to not wanting to cut my Williamsburg vacation short, we decided to fly to Orlando on Friday morning instead of the normal Thursday evening.  2020 hindsight, we could have flown out Thursday and the trip would have been significantly more pleasant, but oh well.  Even though the trip was super short (Friday morning to Sunday evening), I really wanted to revisit Tchoup Chop with Lance.  We had been there back in 2008 together, which feels like forever ago.  Luckily, I was able to get reservations for Friday night and, even though we were the last diners there, it was still a fantastic meal and great to revisit a restaurant we’d been too so many years before. 

Prawn ChipsOur meal began with signature prawn chips that come with a nice, spicy aioli-type sauce.  They’re a great crunchy munchy treat for perusing the menu. 

Pork BellyMongolian Glazed Slow Roasted Pork Belly In Chinese Style Steamed Buns with Spicy Napa Slaw

We ordered this appetizer to share and, while it wasn’t as good as our previous pork belly appetizer at Morimoto, it was still pretty delicious.  A bit sweet and all tasty. 

Tuna SaladTogarashi Seared Ahi Salad with Citrus Soy Vinaigrette, Arugula, Orange, and Crispy Wonton Threads

My salad was one of the daily specials and it was fantastic.  The tuna was beautiful and the citrus soy vinaigrette was lovely.  The right amount of sweet and the right amount of soy.  I also enjoyed the crunch of the wonton strips. 

Egg SaladPanko Fried Soft Egg and Apple Smoked Bacon Salad with Creamy Parmesan Dressing and English Muffin Crostini

This was Lance’s salad and he was a bit disappointed.  The egg was nice, but he felt that a salad with bacon in the name should have more than one strip throughout the salad and I think his complaint is valid.  It was not a very bacony salad and the crostini seemed a bit stale.  Nice idea, but poor execution. 

TunaHot Iron Seared Yellowfin Tuna Steak with Thai Sticky Rice and Smoked Bacon-Wasabi Butter Infusion

Clearly I was in a tuna mood that evening.  I’m often in a tuna mood, though, so it’s not a huge surprise.  This dish was great.  The rice, which you can’t see in the picture since it’s hiding under the tuna, was wonderfully flavored and complimented the sauce well.  The veggies were also a great and unexpected addition. 

FiletTamarind Grilled Angus Beef Tenderloin on Spicy Waterfall Lo Mein Noodles and Broccolini

Lance ordered the filet, which, like my ordering of the tuna, should be no surprise.  It was a very unusual pairing with lo mein and a sweet tamarind sauce, but he enjoyed it and I thought it was tasty too. 

Ice CreamHomemade Ice Creams

I had the trio of ice creams but wasn’t too keen on one of the night’s flavors, so I went with double chocolate and the third is pecan pie.  I think.  This meal was two months ago!  I remember thinking it was some of the best ice cream I’d ever had. 

StrawbsFresh Strawberry Mousse & Crispy Phyllo Napoleon with White Chocolate Sauce

Lance got this crazy strawberry concoction and liked it well enough, although I think he would have been happier with a big bowl of strawberries! 

Overall, this was a great meal and really fun.  Our service was lovely even if we were the last people in the restaurant while they were closing up!  I’m glad that we were able to revisit Thchoup Chop after such a great first experience four years ago.  I hope that, some day, we’ll be able to visit again!

Total price: $148.81 including tip

Emeril’s Tchoup Chop
6300 Hollywood Way
Orlando, FL 32819

Phone: 407.503.2467

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