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About Escoffier

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    Handsome,charming and mostly hungry.
  • Birthday May 16

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  • Gender
    Not Telling
  • Interests
    Um, let's see...fond of fast cars, beautiful women, good food, excellent wines. Dashing and charming rogue, known for continental manners and suavity. Also refreshingly modest but I keep forgetting to mention that.
  • Location
    Stuck inside of Mobile with the Memphis blues again.

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  1. The end of an era. I ate at the first Ray's the Steaks two days after it opened. Landrum was (is?) a man who had a vision. He had one hell of a good run. Thank you Michael for all the years of RTS, it will be missed.
  2. After what seems like an interminable wait, Whiskey & Oyster has opened in the John Carlyle neighborhood in Alexandria. Grover and I have now made two visits and, after a bit of a shaky start has now become much more organized. A large room separated by large dividers into three distinct areas. The bar is large, well organized and has a "booze conveyor" over head with lots of selections of various liquor. The second and third sections are a somewhat private area with one section in front of the open kitchen and the third section close to the seafood is prepared. Speaking of seafood... the first visit: A Carlyle Seafood Tower: A whole lobster, shrimp, clams, oysters, and more (food fog prevents more details) in three large, iced round trays. Not only was the seafood extremely tasty, it was fresh and presented well. it served three of us with no problem and lots of words of great satisfaction. Okay, it was delicious and we really liked it. The second visit: I had two dozen oysters. The server will tell you which varieties are available. California, Maine, PEI were all available when we were there. Other than the food coma I left with, I'd love to tell you what I had but there was nothing left but empty shells. Grover had a seafood cobb salad. She didn't want a lot of food...she's going to finish the salad for lunch. Lots of seafood, crunchy lettuce, bacon..what more could you ask for? Whiskey & Oyster seems to be off to a really good start. Dinner for the three of us for the first dinner was around $200, for the second dinner, around $100 with a bottle of wine at the first dinner and a glass of Albarino at the second . Well worth the expense if you're a seafood fan (and if not, there are chicken and beef dishes but why would you want to do that?)
  3. Albeit, somewhat limited in choices.
  4. I've taken a number of out-of-town guests to Vermilion and they have raved about the food and the service. You might have been there during the transition but the food (and the menu) are all Thomas's now and quite good.
  5. Grover and I went last weekend. We walked over and entered from the Duke Street side. This is a very long, somewhat narrow entrance that is used as a Gallery to highlight art. From cursory glance, mostly portraiture. There is a private dining room on the left as you go towards the Hostess stand. Entering from the Duke Street side you get to tour the whole restaurant. Very nice room but somewhat confusing from that entry point. From memory, the food: Appetizer Me: Fois Gras terrine - Interesting but layers of Foir Gras and, I believe duck confit. The accompanying baguette slices were more like soft bread with no crusty crunch. Again interesting. Wrapped with leek which added color but a not of flavor, red wine gelee and pickled veggies. Grover: Onion soup. The standard that sets the tone for the rest of the meal. Nice presentation, salty soup. If you could overlook the overly-generous use of salt, the broth was nice. Doesn't rise to the level of the Onion soup at Del Ray Cafe, but (minus excess salt), acceptable. Mains Me: Wagyu beef Ordered "rare towards medium rare" and delivered as ordered. Good pink to red center and well cooked. That's the good part. The not-good part was the "sauce" which had a tendency to overpower the taste of the beef. Accompanied by an interesting stack of shredded cabbage and mushroom on a pastry circle. Grover: Pan roasted Monkfish. Bone-in Monkfish was very well done (no, not overcooked, prepared very well). I didn't manage a taste but Grover did a commendable job of demolishing it. Accompanied by a similar stack of veggies on the above described pastry circle. Mostly ignored but the carrots that topped it were interesting. Dessert Grover had the Lemon cake(?). This was a number of cubes of lemon cake and a scoop of lemon sorbet. Actually quite good. General observations: The staff is a mix of new-to-dining and seasoned servers. At times it felt as if we were at a soft opening. Used utensils and glassware were removed promptly but the pacing was somewhat erratic. I'm not sure I'd call this a bistro, the menu reads more new American rather than French bistro. Incidentally, the host/manager spoke impeccable French (possibly the most authentic French item in the house) . We both had a glass of Prosecco and I had appropriate wine for the terrine (a Sauterne) and beef (a California red). The bill before tip was $170. Will we go back? Certainly. One visit does not make a reliable opinion, it's only a fleeting impression. I would like to see Bistro Sancerre succeed because I personally see the promise of some good things coming. Not quite there yet, but (I hope) just over the horizon.
  6. We were there about a month ago. Service and SoonDooBoo were as good as always. We had to help the two nice ladies who were sitting beside us through proper preparation but once they got the idea, they were off and running.
  7. Bajaj has decided that NoPa should now become a Mediterranean restaurant so he's going to rename NoPa Olivia. Olivia, with a rustic Mediterranean menu, will replace NoPa Kitchen at 800 F St., N.W. in January. An announcement from Bajaj’s Knightsbridge Restaurant Group said Olivia’s menu will be inspired by the flavors of Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Tunisia, Italy, Greece and beyond, paying homage to the flavors and recipes from the Mediterranean and North Africa. Nopa executive chef Matt Kuhn will remain in charge of the kitchen, and recently spent time traveling throughout the coastal regions of Spain to study rustic Mediterranean flavors. (thank you, WTOP).
  8. I'd be happy too but there are so many already on the internet and in social media who are ahead of you that I wouldn't have time to correct them all as it stands now.
  9. "What happens if you disenchate an Epic skin shard?" 😁 League of Legends (an online game) (You need to add people who edit others posts. 😛)
  10. Ventnor Sports Cafe, Scott Auslander's Pub and Sports Bar on 18th Street Showing Every Nationals Game in Adams Morgan I was wondering when the Nats started playing baseball in Adams Morgan.
  11. You might also want to check the two places in Kensington I posted. Il Portico is a bit more up-scale (but not coat and tie stiff) but more white tablecloth. La Pappardella helmed by Luigi the owner, and Fabio in the kitchen can give you anything from pizza to home made pasta. This is a more relaxed somewhat traditional Italian restaurant. La Pappardella is in Earl's Court at: 253 Old Brompton Road, Earl's Court, London SW5 9HP It's close to the Earl's Court, West Brompton, and Glouster Road tube stations. (if you take the tube, buy an Oyster card, saves you money and you get the £5 card fee back when you cancel the card)
  12. Andy Hayler's Review --- We invited some friends for dinner at Il Portico after almost random restaurant picking. What an amazing bit of luck. Home made pasta, an owner and servers who treat you like family and food that was both beautiful to look at and even more beautiful to consume. We started with Prosecco and asked for focaccia rather than the (home made) thickly sliced bread that was offered. The owner (who also happens to own the pizza restaurant next door) told us that he would be right back because he would have to go to the pizza restaurant to fix it for us. I hate to abuse superlatives, but even the focaccia was excellent. Just the right amount of crispness and perfect chewiness. There was a bowl of olive oil on the table when we arrived and after savoring the focaccia sans oil, we made use of it. A great way to start. I'll try to put the courses in some order of what was served. Because we asked for Antipasti and then a Secondi followed by dessert there was a lot of food on the table. Antipasti: Salumi (directly sourced from small family run butcher shops in the Apennines Mountains) with Coppa and Pancetta with cubed Pecorino. Second dish was butterflied prawns lightly broiled and just brushed with olive oil Third was Parma Prosciutto with Lardon and Pecorrino and the fourth and final antipasti was Pulpo (octopus) gently broiled and finished with olive oil and spices. Primi: Grover decided she wanted Linguini so she had Linguini with squid ink, lobster, shrimp and cherry tomato. This was a huge serving of linguini with almost a half lobster, tons of shrimp and enough cherry tomatoes to ensure the contrasting sweet, tart flavors. The three of us had: A T-bone of Tuscan veal with wild porcini mushrooms, broiled Monkfish, and tortellini. This was three separate dishes as everything was served family style.Suffice it to say, there were four very satisfied (and satiated) people at the table and a number of cleaned plates. The only thing left was some Linguini that Grover was unable to finish. Dessert: Let's just say traditional. Tiramisu, Affogato, Gelato con Balsamico. We all shared in spite of everyone complaining they were full. We finished with "golden Grappa" made in-house which was one of the best grappas I can recall every having. Needless to say there was no room for coffee but it was hardly missed. For wines we had Prosecco di Conegliano and for dinner a red from a region just north of Tuscany which unfortunately I did not get the name of. Just let me say, it like the food, was excellent. This is traditional serious white tablecloth Italian dining and worth every penny. Dinner was approximately £65 a person. Il Portico is located at: 277 Kensington High Street, Kensington, London W8 6NA Phone: 44 2076026262 and is open for lunch and dinner.
  13. From WTOP.com: https://wtop.com/business-finance/2018/09/report-taylor-gourmet-to-close-all-d-c-area-shops/ From Washington Business Journal: https://www.bizjournals.com/washington/news/2018/09/21/report-taylor-gourmet-to-close-all-d-c-area-shops.html?ana=wtop_bd From Washingtonian Magazine: https://www.washingtonian.com/2018/09/21/hoagie-chain-taylor-gourmet-will-close-all-of-its-stores/
  14. We go to Al Dente on a fairly regular basis. We always sit at the kitchen counter and just ask Roberto to make us 3 or 4 courses. Dinner is always excellent and a lot of the times, things that may be placed on the menu in the future.
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