May 2008

Tesar on CBS Morning Show

Chef John Tesar appearing on the CBS Morning Show… this started our adventure in NYC – more on that later!

The Mansion: Chef’s Table

Here we are at The Mansion (now re-christened the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek) …whatever. On this occasion, we will be dining at the actual “Chef’s Table” which is a large round table in it’s own little room with large windows at the corner of the building… secluded even from the exclusive “Chef’s Room,” which is segregated from the rabble ordering a la carte in the dining room… pshaw! Each version of this escalated dining experience involves Chef Tesar serving multiple courses of specially prepared delicacies. Regardless of your choice of “Chef” experience, you start off with champagne in the elegant little anti-room and begin this culinary craziness with an amazing selection of canapés…

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(L) Here you can see part of the view looking toward Turtle Creek.
(R) …and here into the corridor between the patio and dining room.

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Above are some of the three trays of Oysters we started with – representing a dozen preparations!

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The light is very low, and my poor iPhone could not detail all the dishes! But, here is John with a Whole Baked Striped Bass w/ Porcini Mushrooms and Syrup.

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(L) Here is the full menu for the evening – though Chef did make some adjustments and additions!
(R) And here is the goodie bag you take home – having selected from some delicious artisan candies. A nice touch is the handwritten list of wines which were expertly offered by Michael Flynn, the Beverage and Wine director.

Gypped Julep

I was all busy and not paying attention, then one Saturday morning it occurs to me – “Hey, isn’t the Kentucky Derby on today?” Why yes, it is… Every year, on this occasion, I think how fun it would be to attend The Run for the Roses at least once. Perhaps, next year. As Bob Costas hosts the pre-race festivities, I look into hotels and other logistics – for instance, how to weasel into Millionaire’s Row so I can hang with, like, Kid Rock… well, hmm.
I know – we need a Mint Julep! (Each year I also look at the commemorative Silver-Plated Julep Cups and think of buying some – so that the next year I can enjoy the full experience – never do that, either…)
The recipe is simple enough: you need sugar, water, mint and Bourbon.

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OK: I am addicted to Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve (my collection showing, above) so the Bourbon is covered. Sugar, water… mint, hmm, no mint.
We are running out of time. Off to the nearest store – a Tom Thumb… no fresh mint. Crap. Albertson’s: nada. Great – it’s on in like 15 minutes and Central Market… is too far. I blew this one for sure, dammit. Wait a second… nah, that’s stupid – you can’t do THAT!

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Well, this concoction was an abomination… but I was drinking the damned thing as the horses left the gate – a hollow victory to be sure.

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Maybe next year! (Sorry, Pappy.)