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  1. Well - if you're going to pick one intervention, it's probably going to be vaccination - with a caveat. What I've read is that virtually all of the baseball players received J&J vaccines, which was only about 65% effective to begin with. Good, but not great. Pfizer and Moderna were more like 95% effective. The problem now is Delta. Delta is just hitting the US, so no data on what happens when Delta encounters a single dose vaccination like J&J. In the UK, though, Delta has been shown to reduce a single shot of Astra-Zeneca to 30% effectiveness (vs. 70%+ against earlier variants). J&J and AZ aren't the same, but they're really similar. So I think the clarification in my mind is that Pfizer and Moderna - with 90%+ effectiveness- are far more effective than masks - at 70% effectiveness if worn correctly. Ultimately, Danny Meyer is making a bet that he can attract more customers who will embrace the sense of security offered by vaccines, than he could distancing everyone and requiring masks when not eating (which always struck me as more theater than actual prevention - what about the fact that you're eating without one?). He'll absolutely turn off those who object to vaccine passports, but is that really a concern in NYC?
  2. Tonight was a simple salad of lettuce, Stilton, and cherry tomatoes with confit duck leg I’d made over the last few days. I have no idea how to actually make confit duck but found a recipe that air dried the legs with salt, thyme and garlic, then seared the duck legs, and used the rendered fat plus wine and a bit of butter to cook in the instant pot for an hour. After chilling a day or so, put the legs under the broiler to crispen and warm them. Probably not authentic but made for a great dinner.
  3. So jealous. I’ve almost pulled the trigger on land on Fiery Run Rd about three times.
  4. Undertaking my new part time job as diminutive shadow to Andy Hayler, I made La Trompette - a French restaurant with a Michelin star - my second dine-out in London and thought it worth sharing. The restaurant is located in Chiswick, which is about halfway between Heathrow and central London, if that helps contextualize the location. We shared a meal between two of us, by way of explaining why it looks like I ate so much. The sommelier recommended a French chenin blanc from the Loire to accompany our eclectic food choices and we thought he did quite well - it had enough acidity for the starters but some heft for the entree courses. Starters were a crab and scallop tortelloni as well as an asparagus soup (in season here). The former was quite nice - just a really delicious few bites of crab with minced scallops inside of a tortelloni shell. The sauce was definitely made from crab shell stock, which doubled down on the crab flavor, probably at the expense of the scallop taste, but I'd order this again for sure. The asparagus soup was probably the weakest dish of the night. It was good asparagus soup, but you expect a bit more from a Michelin restaurant. Entrees were suckling pig and a cod dish with Jersey royals and nettles. The suckling pig was magnificently crisp and had a nice sauce at the base to accompany without ruining the crackle. Just a few bites each, but felt like a nod to what England could be doing with their Sunday roasts. The cod dish was almost certainly the winner. Touches of saffron came through in the cream sauce, but the nettles were a delight and the Jersey royals won the best component of the night. What are Jersey royals you might ask if you're an American trying to decide what to order (theoretically). The waiter would tell you that they're baby potatoes from the island of Jersey - but that they're really quite special. He would not be kidding. Absolutely the best potato I've ever had in my life and I can't figure out for the life of me whether it was the potato itself or the cooking method. I'm guessing it was pressure cooked in a wonderful stock, because the flavor permeated the entire potato. We actually spent ten minutes after this course discussing the potatoes and I've since tried to recreate them with Ocado Jersey royals (unsuccessfully). Dessert was a chocolate tart and a cheese tray. Very good chocolate tart, although I can't remember much more than that a couple weeks later. The cheese plate was a great reminder that American restaurants tend to serve cheese way too cold. These were room temperature or a bit warmer and it really made all the difference in bringing out the flavors. Overall, a quite solid meal. Prix fixe is £65 pp and wine was £79. Markups here on the wine are going to be a sore spot for me - they're significantly higher than most places in the US.
  5. That sweetbread dish looks absolutely gorgeous. Stunning. I also wouldn't tend to order steak at a fine dining place. What's the green under the tofu and steak, though?
  6. I have to say that if the two mentioned wines retail for $1,400 and $2,800 a bottle, that maybe it's not such a bad deal? Extremely extravagant, I'd agree (I'm not buying those bottles retail either), but maybe someone's celebrating all those special occasions we've missed the last 15 months.
  7. A ton of great suggestions thanks all! I'm leaning towards Le Diplomate or Convivial right now (she's a great restaurant attender, but tastes don't tend to be too exotic). We'll save the fancier places for when we get to come back and celebrate with her. Joe's Seafood sounds interesting for happy hour (is it really run by the same people as Summer House & Mon Ami Gabi?), but she'll need to do later in the day to accommodate a couple adult attendees.
  8. Reviving this topic. Looking for recommendations for a fun restaurant that might make for a good 21st birthday dinner for my daughter. Looking to spend $50-100 per person for 2-4 people. Food should be good, but the lively scene is where my knowledge falls apart as these are the places I generally don't go out of my way to frequent. Would be great if they had a cocktail menu or interesting drinks as well. Would Nina May fit the bill here? Any other new places I should consider? Thanks!
  9. I've got nothing here. Fishy flavor? Everything is free range (doesn't mean they're not fed fish meal necessarily), but I've never picked up a fish flavor from the chickens. Only nine months in, though. We've got time.
  10. Who knew our food blog would devolve into a robust discussion of flatulence across various animal groups? Short answer is (from what I've read), it's generally not seen as being as bad. I'd say that while I recognize that lamb or even beef might be more environmentally harmful than say tempeh, I'm going to switch to grazed meat sources and consume less (which I do anyway) rather than eliminate them. And for your viewing pleasure, a discussion of the treatment of methane in greenhouse gas emissions relative to carbon dioxide. Who knew chocolate was this bad for the environment?
  11. I moved to London at the end of September. My son, who claims to only eat fish and chicken, misses Jimmy Dean sausage with Grands Biscuits the most, so cognitive dissonance is a-ok in our household. He gets leftovers or frozen foods on lamb night, which he actually loves. Basically a junk food night for him.
  12. Piping in from over the pond, the chickens over here look like completely different animals from those in the States. We'd actually stopped buying chicken breasts from the supermarket completely - there was just something wrong with them, no matter how you cooked them. The difference over here is huge. Supermarket chicken is far better, but we're doing most of our purchases at the local farmers markets and the difference there is stark. I'm not sure we've bought much beef, but the lamb is plentiful and great.
  13. I just looked at the menu (only the terrace menu is available, so can't comment on inside dining as it's not open at the moment). Someone may need to convince me since the 'snacks' start at around £22 (about $30) with entrees up to £125 (albeit for steak for two). If I'm paying that much for outside dining, I want views and ambiance, not a department store. I'll check out the inside dining menu when it's back online, although I'm unlikely to do much indoor dining until I'm fully vaccinated at the end of July.
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