After first hearing about the man, his philosophy, and his amazing restaurant while I was in culinary school, it immediately went onto the 'must eat here before I die' list that I keep in my head. When I found out we were going to be living in Monterey, CA for six months, I knew that if ever I was going to eat there, the time was NOW!
|dressed and ready to go :)|
We drove up to Napa, got all dressed up and made our way to The French Laundry. Our reservation was for 9pm so I couldn't get any cute pics of the famous blue door :(
But I did sneak a photo of the amazing kitchen crew, hard at work!
The restaurant is beautiful! The staff was everything you would expect- friendly, professional, courteous, etc. I thought about taking pictures of the inside of restaurant but decided to spare my husband since I was going to photograph all the dishes. But let's get to the food!!!!
There were two nine course tastings available - the classic chefs tasting and a vegetable chefs tasting. I thought about getting one of each so we could try more dishes but knew that I wouldn't want to share a single bite of mine, so we got the same tasting - the classic tasting.
Besides the scheduled nine courses, we were also presented with some delicious bread from Bouchon Bakery (another Thomas Keller property, just down the street) which was served with two different butters. Next came a couple of amuse bouches - a salmon cornet served in a cone, made to resemble an ice cream cone and a gruyere cheese gougeres. Both of these were amazing and a perfect start to our dinner.
Here were our courses -
|gruyere cheese gougeres|
|Salmon Tartare Cornet|
It looks like an ice cream cone and tastes like heaven
|Oysters and Pearls|
|Mushroom a la Grecque|
|Seared Hawaiian Big Island Tuna|
with mango-pineapple salsa
|Butter Poached Lobster|
Tender, moist and delicious
Medjool Dates, Nantes Carrot, Sicilian Pistachios, Salsify and Cilantro
|The cheese course|
If I had to pick a least favorite course, it would be this one. It wasn't bad it just wasn't as great as the others.
|Blood orange mimosa|
As a palate cleanser before desert we were served this lovely little dish - Champagne "Granité," Brown Sugar Streusel and Fresh Cream sherbet.
|Happy, happy lady!|
Served with cinnamon whip and banana ice cream.
| "Coffee and Donuts"|
French Laundry version of coffee and donuts is actually Cappuccino Semifredo with Cinnamon Sugar Donuts. and cocoa dusted hazel nuts. Perfection!
This meal was absolutely perfect! While I will probably never have the pleasure to eat at French Laundry again, I will never, ever forget the experience. This is by far the best meal I have ever eaten. It was a once in a lifetime experience and I am so happy and blessed that I was able to do it. Did I mention how very much I love my husband for this?