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DoctorNo

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About DoctorNo

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    jumbo shrimp
  1. Sad to have missed the Living Social pop up - looks great! When's the actual opening at this point?
  2. Padron and Shishito Peppers (Merged)

    Where can I get them as a home cook? I haven't been able to find them anywhere...
  3. Hi All, Any idea where a home cook can source either fresh sea urchin or trays of uni? Also, where the hell do I get decent prices on lobster, considering how cheap it supposedly has become wholesale? Thanks, N.
  4. Since late 2006, there were rumours about Pata Negra opening up on 14th street next to Rice and HR-57, in the space formerly occupied by 100% Mexico. The liquor license application remains posted to the door, but the space is still lain fallow, with a "for lease" sign out front. Considering the hip attractiveness of the neighborhood, the new opening or impending opening of Cork, Marvin, Veranda and a host of new stores in the area, and the fact that it's already becoming a casual restaurant destination, I'd think that a new restaurant would be both welcome and profitable - there's always spillover from a crowded Saint-Ex, and theatre traffic not willing to splurge on Viridian. And the ANC in the neighborhood is not that overbearing, from what I'm told. So what's the deal? Anyone heard anything? N.
  5. The Palena Chicken Project

    Very glad that someone's actually going to put my much simplified recipe to the test. I hope you have great results, Gastro888! I've made the recipe a few times now, each time eyeballing the brine and never giving it more than a few hours, so I wouldn't obsess over the salt ratio, though, from the point of view of chemistry, a larger bird should brine longer in a more dilute brine so that you don't have a thin mantle of well-salted and plump chicken with an insipid inner bird - this is also the reason that, when curing a large ham, it makes sense to inject your brine into the muscle and along the bone. Honestly, with this chicken, I don't think it's going to make or break it, but the five-spice is hauntingly good! I'm absolutely convinced that the pan-sear/over finish/short rest is the way they do it in the restaurant, based on appearance, flavor and the 45-minute wait time. Let me know how it goes! Doctor No
  6. Been back to St. Ex twice recently and very happy with the menu changes. Again, it's my go-to place. Now, I will be really impressed with Chef Seaver if he revamps the (already really solid) brunch menu. Onwards, and upwards! N.
  7. The Palena Chicken Project

    To get back to the subject of Palena's actual chicken, I had it again last week. The spice mix is very reminiscent of a simple Chinese five-spice. The chicken must have been pan-seared and finished in the oven. It's the only way to explain it and it's the only way it would work in a restaurant kitchen, in my mind. I was running short on time so I did a two-hour brine in a more concentrated salt solution with a good measure of five-spice powder as well as a little garlic powder and white pepper. Added a touch of honey just because everyone had been adding sugar to their brines. Mixed it up well and stirred a few times. I used cool but not cold water and I didn't bother to refrigerate. I'm sure a 24-hour brine would've been better, but one does what one has to do. Preheated to 500 degrees and took the chicken out, cut in half, Palena-style. Did not rinse, but blotted dry and let sit out for twenty minutes, with an occasional blotting to ensure the skin was uniformly dry. Heated grapeseed oil in a 9" cast-iron skillet just just-below-smoking. Seared the half-chicken, skin-side down, on medium-high heat (i.e. I wasn't trying to smoke the place out) until the skin pulled away from the flat of the pan, about six or seven minutes. Flipped it over so skin-side was up and tossed it in the hot oven. Cooked for about twenty-five minutes more, though I probably could've gotten away with twenty. My guess is that the oven (which is, sadly, electric, and not the most accurate) was hovering closer to 450 degrees. Let the meat rest about six or seven minutes more, uncovered, on a flat plate. No mirepoix, no day-and-a-half of work, no twenty-five ingredients. This was simple and elegant and it was shockingly close to Palena. The chicken (Whole Foods air-dried free-range, about $9 a bird) was moist, flavorful, evenly cooked, with a nicely browned but not burnt, crispy skin, nearly fully rendered of fat. The flavor was there, that same, haunting aroma, though I'm sure it would have been more prominent if I'd let it brine for longer. I still have the second half of the chicken in a ziplock bag of five-spice brine in the fridge, ready for tomorrow's dinner. This was by far the best chicken I've ever made, and it was startlingly close to Palena. I would really love for other people to test out the method and let me know if they fare similarly. For a gallon of water I used about 2/3 cup of salt, two tablespoons of honey, a teaspoon of black pepper, a teaspoon of garlic powder, and just more than a heaping tablespoon of good five-spice powder. Let me know! Cheers, Doctor No
  8. I've had several good meals at St. Ex, and it's one of my local staples. We can go on and on about the commitment to local and organic produce and the pleasures of the wood grill. My one gripe: the menu just doesn't change. I know that Pilar recently flipped around its menu to lay low on the tater tots, but I've gone to St. Ex a dozen times in the past six months and seen nothing new at all. I've got to admit, being a New Yorker (and that's my fault, being spoiled for so long, and I acknowledge that) transplanted to DC, as much as I want to recommend St. Ex to people, I'm getting bored. Chef Seaver - what's next for the menu? N.
  9. I am going on *blush* a BLIND DATE tomorrow. The venue, not picked by me, was Zengo, near MCI. I was wondering if anyone had been and had cocktail, food or wine recommendations. The only DonRocks stuff on the place is a review of Sandoval's other restaurant in Las Vegas. There's basically no info on Zengo. If you've been and can tell me about it (and maybe suggest some swanky but intimate lounges or venues in the vicinity for post-dinner drinks), I'd really appreciate it! Cheers, Doctor No
  10. Hard-To-Find Alcoholic Beverages

    I seem to remember seeing it at Ace Liquors, but I'd call to be sure. N.
  11. Hey there. I've been trying to set up my home bar to make all of the classic and forgotten cocktails that I posted about earlier, but I've had a lot of trouble finding a source for some of my ingredients. I'd much rather buy local than mail order, and I'd happily place a special order through a friendly liquor store, but any recommendations would help! I'm looking to find a source for: Torani Amer Luxardo maraschino Ramazzotti amaro Old Potrero rye Strega Any help would be appreciated! Once the rain settles down, it'll be time for Hemingway Daiquiris again, and I'm running dangerously low on maraschino! N.
  12. Looking For Yuzu

    Does anyone know where I could get a hold of fresh Yuzu fruit in the District? Actually, any recommendations for various asian groceries in the District would be useful - I live in Logan Circle and cringe at the thought of braving traffic and bridges. thanks, N.
  13. "Classic" Cocktails in the District

    Clamato makes it a Caeser, but, far better, IMHO, is the Bull Shot, where beef broth is substituted for the tomato. Sounds nearly as gross as the Caeser, but it is a fantastic brunch drink! N.
  14. "Classic" Cocktails in the District

    Thanks for the help, everyone! Glad to see that cocktail craft is alive and well in the District! As for Fee's bitters (orange and peach), I have found them at Dean and Deluca in New York, and would not be surprised if the DC D&D carried them as well, but I'd call before I shlepped into Georgetown. Cheers, Doctor No
  15. In recent months, I've become a huge fan of "classic" cocktails - made as close to how they were in the heady days of the early 20th century. In New York, there are a handful of wonderful cocktail bars that specialize in this, but I have yet to find a bartender in the district that can make a Hemingway Daiquiri, a Pegu Club, a Corpse Reviver #2, or any of a number of fantastic drinks that hark back to an older time. Nor have I found many bars that stock maraschino liqueur, or orange bitters, or applejack, etc. I was wondering if anyone knew of places that took their cocktails seriously and with a sense of history. I would guess that, if cocktailians exist in DC, they're on DonRocks... Cheers, Doctor No
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