May 2011

TACA Lexus Party on the Green, The Mansion on Turtle Creek – Dallas

May 20th was the date for the annual bash at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek supporting TACA Dallas, the arts benefactor that has awarded over $1,000,000 to North Texas arts organization in each of the last four years (and a total of over $19 million since 1967).

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^ Weather brought the party fully indoors this year; ^ the chefs assembled.

Chef’s stations occupied the Pavilion Ballroom, the Promenade, the restaurant dining rooms, and the upstairs event suites.

The dishes:

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^ L: Wolfgang Eberle, Al Faisaliah Hotel – Pan-Seared Scallops with Hummus and Pomegranate.

^ R: Fabrice Guisset, Las Ventanas al Pariso – Chicken Pibil on Avocado and Wasabi Tostada.

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^ L: Ned Bell, Rosewood Hotel Georgia – Ocean Wise Albacore Tuna Tacos.

^ R: Hemant Dadlani, Rosewood Little Dix Bay –  Harissa Lamb Loin with Tamarind “Moong Chaat.”

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^ L: Kevin Garvin, Neiman Marcus - Crab Cocktail with Cucumber and Basil Soup, Watermelon, Hearts of Palm and Avocado.

^ R: Sharon Hage, formerly of York Street – Green Tomatoes with Local Chevre, Pistachio-Mint Cucumbers and Crumbled Texas Cornbread.

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^ L: Anthony E. Dawodu, Caneel Bay – Caribbean Conch Spring Roll with Papaya Salsa and Mango Barbecue Sauce.

^ R: Yann Giacomoni, Jumby Bay – Shrimp with Hibiscus Sauce and Confit Sweet Potato.

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^ L: Tim Byres, Smoke – Smoked Allspice Rabbit Sausage with Fresh Herb Salad and Pickled Relish Vinaigrette. Always fun stuff from Tim.

^ R: Brian C. Luscher,  The Grape – Country-Style Duck Terrine with Dried Fruit, Pistachios and Foie Gras. 

Luscher’s was one of my favorites. I was asked to be among a handful of judges to award the best dish. This was at the top of my list. I was over-ruled however – so, moving on…  

Intermezzo time. I joined Mansion Sommelier and Wine & Beverage Director Michael Flynn in the Hospitality Suite for my kind of refreshment – Krug!

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^ A lovely view from the suite’s terrace. Back to it:

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^ L: Juan A. Rosado, Rosewood Crescent Hotel - Slow-Roasted Pork Belly, Smoked Rosemary Oil and Masa Onion Tart.

^ R: Peter Rudolph, Rosewood Sand Hill – Louisiana Grey Shrimp with Asparagus, Potato Mousse, Chorizo and Candied Peanuts.

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^ L: Scott Romano, Charlie Palmer at The Joule – Rabbit Agnolotti with Sweet Peas, Root Vegetables, Black Garlic and Rabbit Jus. Nice.

^ R: Graham Dodds, Bolsa – Veal Cheeks Braised in Milk and Graham’s Honey with Local Greens.

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^ L: Luca Rutigliano, CordeValle – Pressed Watermelon and Crab Salad with Chili-Lime Dressing.

^ R: Daniel Echasseriau, Rosewood Corniche – Lamb Kofta over Hummus and Tabbouleh on Grilled Pita Bread.

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^ L: Teiichi Sakurai, Tei-An – Seaweed Salad with Shrimp.

^ R: Jacques Sorci, The Carlyle – Beef Short Ribs with Carrot Puree, Brussels Sprouts and Zinfandel Sauce.

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^ L: Bruno Davaillon, Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek – Lobster Tartare with Fennel Puree, Bouillabaisse Jelly and Green Olive Crostini. My favorite version of this dish from Bruno.

^ R: Chefs know what’s up – congregating around Sharon Hage are Tei-An Chef/Owner Teiichi Sakurai, Mansion Exec Chef Bruno Davaillon, and outgoing Mansion Exec Sous, Eric Brandt (it was Eric’s last night!).

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^ Nicolas Blouin, Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek‘s new Pastry Chef created this Lollipop Flower Garden. We ate the many styles of these delightful confections late into the evening.

Taca-dessert-1 Another great night at The Mansion with an impressive turnout by patrons and the chefs alike.

Luisa Rocca drops by Veritas Wine Room – Dallas

So last Wednesday I headed over to a favorite hangout, Veritas Wine Room, to sample some Rocca wines.

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The lovely Luisa Rocca was on hand with some nice selections.

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Though a nice number of bottles were sold to a couple Veritas regulars, we were disappointed that everyone stayed in as the weather threatened.

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^ So we busted out the good stuff and headed to the parking lot to enjoy the show. It was a treat to have Luisa tell the story of the special and excellent Rocca Maria Adelaide Barbaresco – the 2006 Rabajà was also well received! We packed up shop and headed for Hibiscus down the street. See next post.

Chef John Tesar’s Premiere Dinner at The Table – Dallas

Check this out:

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JT knew what he was doing when he conceived a new use for this space adjoining his buzzing The Commissary at One Arts Plaza. Another magical room emerges in Dallas.

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^ Some friends gather for Chef John Tesar’s Premiere Dinner at The Table on May 2. As it was a Monday we were joined by the Uygur’s from Lucia, The Mansion‘s Bruno Davaillon and Michael Flynn, Tim Byres of Smoke, and One Arts Plaza neighbor Tei-An‘s Teiichi Sakurai (That’s a ghostly Scott Barber at right, doing somm duties this evening).

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^ a nod to a Tesar favorite, Mugaritz. …obviously we “submit.”

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The Table will feature canapés, 4 – 6 courses, cheese, pre-dessert, dessert, and candy cart. Tonight we were treated to 13 courses – I mean, how often do we get THIS group together for dinner…?

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^ canapés: fava bean and pecorino salad; Spicer’s pumpkin blossom with Paula’s riccotta; molten foie gras ball; seared tuna; clam consommé.

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^ bread from Empire Bakery; and the amuse-bouche – octopus salad.

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^ oyster consommé with american sturgeon caviar; and faux cuttle fish pasta with iberico pork and lemon fondue – raves.

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^ seared diver scallop and beef tongue with mint salsa verde; and little neck clam and honj meni mushroom risotto with fine herbs and clam emulsion.

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The Table concept is a reimaginning of Tesar’s Chef’s Table at The Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek – for a different time. Elegant, approachable – casual and fun. And priced at a discount.

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^ a mid course: fried duck egg in brown butter with white oregon truffles; and pork belly with uni, lardo, shiso and white oregon truffles.

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^ butter poached lobster with melted leeks, port syrup and raw foie gras; and whole roasted sweet breads with Spicer’s micros, shaved truffles and truffle vinaigrette.

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^ artisanal cheeses!

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^ Pastry chef Corey Thomson’s pre-dessert: strawberry panna cotta with roasted strawberries and strawberry foam; and dessert: yuzu and lime tart with green tea ice cream.

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Corey bagging candy to go.

Nice. The Table begins.

Quickie: Catching up with Kosmas at the Bar at Marquee Grill – Dallas

In an era long gone, when I was in high school, my friends and I made midnight treks to the Highland Park Village Theatre many a weekend to see the Rocky Horror Picture Show. In fact, for a time, this theatre held the record for consecutive showings of the film. Things have changed a bit…

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Enough with the melancholy – this Marquee Grill deal is pretty sweet. We'll look at more of the cool restaurant digs in future – tonight we imbibe.

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We dropped by late on Friday night, during their soft opening, to find mixologist – and Speakeasy author –  Jason Kosmas (Marquee Executive Beverage Director) at the top of the stairs leading to Marquee's sexy second floor bar and balcony.

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The guys mixed us up some goods. ^ Here is the Distinguished Gentleman From Kentucky: Makers 46, Benedictine, Peychaud's & Peach Bitters, and Seasonal Fruits.

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^ The Oxacha Sour: Illegal Mezcal, Lime Juice, Egg Whites, Angostura Bitters, grated Cinnamon & Nutmeg.

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^ The view from the Marquee balcony – literally atop the theatre marquee. Highland Park Village plans a three-story European fountain out front – and a clock tower to boot.

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We dug the place, already a game changer for nightlife in the tony 'hood – next time, we dine!