Monday, June 20, 2011

Father's Day 2011

I felt like I should "fess up" on the board today. I wrote a brief note on my wife’s food blog promising that I would prepare a curry on this Father’s day Sunday. Long story short I got lazy and didn't. Instead we called some friends and met for a long lunch at an interesting cafe that Quay Po had discovered while she was checking out a neighborhood near a condo she was considering as an investment and possible "retire to" place. We picked a perfect day, just temperate and breezy enough to allow us to dine al fresco. We had a delightful meal, starting with sharing one of their large-ish salads. Our choice was the frisee/arugula with avocado, gorgonzola, apple, and toasted walnuts tossed in a light vinaigrette. We then each had the foie gras which was served in a very unique fashion worth mentioning. The foie gras had been tossed in a seasoned flour and flash fried at high temperature. It sat upon a layer that started with a slice of toasted baguette, in turn topped with a grilled orange slice and spiced apple. The presentation was gorgeous. The taste was good except that we all agreed the foie gras was perhaps slightly over cooked. For mains my buddy & I chose home made beef sausages with mash and a deeply rich shallot & red wine reduction sauce. Quay Po chose garlic prawns while her counterpart chose roasted salmon. Our choices were beautifully plated, and delicious, perfectly accompanied by a very chilled bottle of Prosecco to lend to the festive meal. All of us were too stuffed to consider dessert but we did have a round of espressos, which seemed perfect after the rich and slightly sweet meal.

I will say it again, my favorite moments in life are dining leisurely on good food with good friends. Good wine is a bonus. My best meal memories include camp fire steaks with hunting and fishing buddies, the time I was introduced to Caspian caviar and ice cold Polish vodka in a campy Berlin bar,  an exquisite Vienna restaurant, in candlelight with my lovely Krystle, more than one riotous drinking & eating parties with friends and colleagues in Tokyo, surprising and amazing Mexican food in Suzhou China, ice cold beer and ceviche from freshly caught yellow fin chopped on the wooden seat of a panga boat while drifting in the Sea of Cortez, the incredible cheese steak sandwiches in a hole-in-the-wall South Philly joint found purely by accident, the best ever veal shared in a Milano restaurant with a colleague from New Zealand, the biscuits & gravy in a cafe called The Rose in a west Kansas town the summer I did farm work so many years ago (the same town in which we had to fight our way through several "townies" that took umbrage at the attention one of our rowdy crew had paid to a local gal), the spicy pasta in a Rome trattoria where the good hearted owner fell in love with my wife and catered to her, and on our last evening there, walked out with us and hugged us with a tear in his eyes, and so many more memorable occasions. It seems to me that my life comprises these events in a series of exclamation points. It has been a very fortunate journey so far.