Friday, October 19, 2012

Lunch at Le Crocodile Restaurant

Lunch at Le Crocodile with the friendly foodies of VanFoodBloggers was everything that is fine dining.  From the moment we arrived we were enveloped by the comfort of the surroundings.  Every detail from the immaculately starched snowy white linens, the gleaming silver, the carefully selected fresh flower arrangements to the luxurious banquet seating - all of these elements expressing perfectly the hallmarks of fine dining that is so enjoyable.  In fact it was so comfortable it turned into a decadent three hour lunch for most of us.
Chef Jacob surprised us with an amuse bouche (a chefs way of saying hello) -  a sumptuous melt-in-your-mouth tart of egg custard so fine and delicate it quivered. For the first course (after making much ado about the onion tart and the tomato gin soup in my last post) it was arranged that we'd all have a tasting plate of these two favorites. After that everyone would be on their own to choose whatever else they wanted.

I was terribly keen to have the Kussi oysters and made this my main course. My fellow foodies however declined this treat - and with the mignonette sauce I was glad to have them all to myself. Kussi means precious in Japanese. They're not widely available outside of the west coast - lucky us!
Foodie Wendy ordered a lovely meal that included pan seared Foie gras and proffered a morsel to taste which I gladly accepted. Where else but France do they have a law stating that "Fois gras belongs to the protected cultural and gastronomic heritage?  Though there are several cruelty free producers now making ethical sources of Foie gras it will be awhile before chefs make the transition.   

Chocolate mousse
lemon tart
During my time working as an apprentice preparing the mise-en-place for the chocolate mousse was yet another nerve racking exercise - do not burn the flaked almonds or over whip the cream - just do not do it!  Sadly I lost the recipe long ago.  This chocolate  mousse has no comparison - trust this. With that in mind deciding what dessert to have between my two favorites -  chocolate mousse and lemon tart - I went with both.  Who can say when I'll get a chance to come back.  Yes - good excuse! To decide the better dessert - well it just can't be done. 

Fine dining never lets you out the door without a small sweet token of appreciation and in Le Crocodile's case a signature set of white and dark chocolate crocodiles.  

Our group gave a rating of 5 out of 5 stars for this MeetUp and I was charmed to touch bases with Chef Jacob and to catch up on his family news.


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