Lunch at Troisgros
One final meal at Troisgros before heading off to Burgundy, this wonderful lunch compared the specialties of Michel Troisgros with the previous evening's dinner, which consisted of the father's classics prepared by the son. We began with a light, refreshing salad of fresh ceps, followed by an extraordinary bass that was steamed and served on slightly undercooked Japanese sushi rice, with flavors of saki and roasted peanuts. It was a stunning dish that could have been prepared by one of Tokyo's greatest chefs. Next was one of the most spectacular dishes I have had recently, a deboned pigeon stuffed with foie gras, wrapped with spinach, and deep fried. It was pure decadence brilliantly executed. After that, we ate unlimited quantities of the great fall mushroom, the tiny orange girolles, that had been delicately sauteed in butter with fried parsley sprinkled on top. With this we had a terrific bottle of 1995 Zind Humbrecht Riesling Rangen, followed by an elegant, complex, fragrant, light to medium-bodied 1990 Charles Joguet Chinon Digoine (100% Cabernet Franc).
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Petit Louis Bistro
A lookalike, authentic French bistro, Petit Louis in Baltimore's Roland Park is the creation of restauranteurs par excellence Cindy Wolf and Tony Foreman. You feel like you’ve walked into a bistro on the Left Bank of Paris when you enter Petit Louis. The food is classic bistro, and they do it well. All of the courses we had were flavorful, sometimes a trifle rustic, but delicious in their intensity. This was good comfort food prepared extremely well. The wines started with one of the major surprises for me over the last year, the 2006 sparking wine from Tony Soter in Oregon. I had this several times while I was out visiting Oregon, and I had always been impressed, but this is a 10-year-old sparking Rosé that is just sensational, and I’m talking world class—it’s that good. Something this good from France would cost at least two to three times as much, so kudos to Tony Soter. The 1995 Billaud-Simon Chablis Mont de Milieu was oxidized and undrinkable. The 1996 Zind-Humbrecht Pinot Gris Clos St. Urbain Rangen de Thann was sweet, and although it went well with the foie gras, it was just a little too unctuous and sweet a wine...