Wednesday, July 11, 2007

1789 still superlative with Rising Chef Winner Nathan Beauchamp

First I just want to say that this will be my LAST posting here in the USA this month. We are off to Europe where you will get some periodic fine dining experiences, but we will be onboard the Westerdam, so I don't really talk much about their food, as fine as it is. I also want to thank our dear friend PETER VOTH who has created a BLOG for all my reviews which may make it easier for you to find specific ones. The address is

Last night we joined four friends for a fabulous meal at 1789 where they are running a $37-or-so 3-course summer special which includes the regular ala carte menu, and what a selection of choices that is (with surcharges only on the lamb or beef fillet!). All this comes from this years winner of the Rammys RISING CHEF award Chef NATHAN BEAUCHAMP.

We had a bad bottle of Cotes du Rhones blanc which we quickly sent back to try instead a POUILLY FUISSE 2005 DOMAINE des VIEUX MURS which was crisp and refreshing with some nice fruit and a touch of oak. It was super with my FRESH PORTUGUESE SARDINES so lightly breaded and sauteed over a bed of ONIONS with GOLDEN RAISINS & PINE NUTS. Ther fish were not salty at all nor bony and I just reveled in their flavor.

The other super appetizer at the table was the STEAK TARTARE with QUAIL EGG, Caperberries and Flatbread.

We were thrilled to be treated to some extra appetizers which included PAPPARDELLE with Dandelion, Homemade Sausage and Toasted Garlic, a yummy VEAL SHORTRIB with Grilled Corn, Smoked Paprika and Pickled Shallots, a Risotto with again Roasted Corn (a regular appearance), Basil and tasty CHANTERELLE toped with sliced of SUMMER TRUFFLES. All are on the menu and brought raves!

The first red wine we chose was a light bodied Pinot Noir/Sangiovese which was not as great as we had hoped but was nice between was IL BACIALE 2004 from Monteferato. Our final red was a big improvement and full bodied and warm from PIRRAMIMMA in McLaren Vale, Australia a 2003 PETIT VERDOT that would make anyone happy with its rich berry flavors.

The entrees were all impressive and very filling as well. KIROBUTA PORK CHOP with Fried Green Tomatoes, Bean Salad & Aged Balsamic and YELLOWFIN Rare TUNA with Arugula, Piquillo Peppers, Botarga and Fennel (a great lighter summer dish), the SCALLOPS and my excellent ROASTED VEAL TENDERLOIN & SWEETBREADS with Market Carrots, Basil and a rich but not overwhelming Madeira Sauce.

Desserts are no less impressive from Pastry Chef Fabrice Bendano. There was a Chocolate DOME for chocoholics and a RASPBERRY "Napoleon" with Conbava (like Meyers Lemon) Sorbet and Hibiscus Essence, a BERRY TART with super Sorbets of Blackberry & Strawberry and my beyond superb, over-the-top, yet-so-simple GLAZED APRICOTS with VANILLA SHORTBREAD, RASPBERRY SORBET and PISTACHIO ICE CREAM all served in a giant brandy glass with a crunchy sweet pirouette-type cookie that made me want more...but nooooooo...this week I have eaten too much!

See you all NEXT WEEK in ROME!