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looking to share dinner at florilege

You've been holding this reservation since at least December 15. It is unfair to the restaurant and to other diners to make speculative reservations, please stop doing that.

about 17 hours ago
Gargle in Japan

Cookbooks by Japanese chefs and stores in Tokyo/Kyoto

Hard to think of anything specific - as you can imagine, the books are virtually all in Japanese.

There's also Aoyama Book Center which has a nice selection of cooking, art, etc.

I think those are the relatively less frustrating shops for a non-speaker. There's also Junkudo, and Kinokuniya (but iirc you're coming from nyc so you've got one of those already)

Jan 19, 2015
Gargle in Japan

Cookbooks by Japanese chefs and stores in Tokyo/Kyoto

T-Site.

Jan 19, 2015
Gargle in Japan

Armchair Food Travel in Japan

Don't worry, I get it. Our local Izakaya carries these on a regular basis. I like them up until May when they start getting a bit dodgy.

And of course you can get them delivered to your home without spending time to go out to the country:

http://www.umaikaki.com/shiraishiko/s...

Jan 18, 2015
Gargle in Japan

Armchair Food Travel in Japan

Thanks, that's a nice site, nice jab at us lazy rich city folks too!

Jan 18, 2015
Gargle in Japan

Tokyo and Kyoto plan

You need to book Ishikawa early, but it's totally realistic (they're closed for the next two weeks as the entire staff is going to cook somewhere in Singapore, although with substantially less fanfare than when Noma goes to Tokyo ;), so there may not be anyone picking up the phone). The difference between the menus is 4000 yen.

Matsukawa is well over your budget target and I wouldn't try it until you've had some experience with kaiseki.

Seizan is great, and also very realistic to book, but ask for seats at the counter.

Yuuji is a well priced and quite good yakiniku option, if you don't mind smelling like pastrami for a couple of days. Make sure to take the steak there if you go - not expensive and not a huge portion. Book well in advance.

Maisen is a waste of time and calories. Grab something from their takeout counter if you'd like.

Jan 17, 2015
Gargle in Japan

Noma in Tokyo?

Apparently the waiting list is 60,000 long. I didn't know there were that many food bloggers.

Jan 16, 2015
Gargle in Japan

In response to avoiding "Pesky Americans!" (Yankees)

And if the wife is allergic to French but the 4 year old likes to get sick at restaurants, then instead of being like a punishment at school, it becomes as bad as staying in Guantanamo.

Personally, when I am bored with something I find it more effective to quit doing it than to tell others they are a source of boredom, or even a punishment to me.

Jan 13, 2015
Gargle in France

Mayday Mayday : Angela's Banh Mi is no more !

Yes, except nobody's doing any baking, and apparently the fresh product includes pate that is only for fools and rude folks ;)

Jan 11, 2015
Gargle in France

Difference between Japanese chef cooking in Paris and Japanese chef cooking Asian inspired French food in Paris

Hiramatsu is a multinational catering organization. They run many French themed places in Japan (Auberge de l'Ill, I think the Paul Bocuse franchise, Hiramatsu, etc.) and probably don't belong in the picture.

Sola and Passage 53 are French. Perhaps they have some Japanese sensibility but they're only marginally Asian-influenced. Same is true for Neige d'Ete.

Abri is a step down the sophistication line. Also French.

I don't see Asian influence in any of these. I haven't been to the others.

On the other hand there are many proper Japanese restaurants - Aida, Toyo, Okuda, etc.

I think a good test of this is whether you'd know the food is cooked in a Japanese style without knowing in advance that the chef is Japanese (or having a Japanese FOH). Usually the answer is you'd just think it's modern French.

eta: At Neige d'Ete there was one funny detail - the sauce on the game entree was demi glace, by which I mean it wasn't based on demi glace but it was simply demi glace. This is a very typically Japanese thing to do in "western" food and I didn't ask the chef if he was being referential/ironic or just thought that's how it should be.

Jan 11, 2015
Gargle in France

Tokyo Reservations in Feb

The OP made reservations to all three on the same night. He changed his post to hide that, so maybe one reason Den is full is that people made reservations they don't intend to honor :)

Jan 11, 2015
Gargle in Japan

Mayday Mayday : Angela's Banh Mi is no more !

There are many variations (and you really wouldn't want pate with your sardine banh mi, I think). Maggi is usually for breakfast banh mi, fish sauce for the others. I think the pork was the most different component than any version of it I've ever had (and even though I'm not a big fan of sweetness in meat sauces, I need to try and recreate it)

Jan 10, 2015
Gargle in France

Mayday Mayday : Angela's Banh Mi is no more !

Well, we had it now. One pork - delicious, the burnt caramel sauce is absolutely great, and one pate, just okay.

Both enjoyed the advantages of Paris - great bread - as well as the disadvantages - chili flakes (old, old, chili flakes, the kind you get in those big plastic containers they use in not so good restaurants) instead of sliced jalapeno or similar for spiciness, the pate is that bottom of the barrel stuff endemic to nominally vietnamese places here, and the wrong fish sauce. It's probably true that it's the best Banh Mi in Paris (or at least better than any I've had here), and it's a delicious sandwich but it doesn't hold a candle (yes, except for the bread) to really good ones.

I spoke with her a bit and she told me about the unpredictability of the market - one day she bought ten baguettes and sold them out in no time, another day she bought fourteen and only sold seven (both numbers, I was thinking, mean she is certainly not managing to pay the rent). I suggested it might be related to the many hundreds of people converging on P. de la Republique but she seemed oblivious to that. Also oblivious to counting money she's given or doing the math of pate+pork. A very nice woman, she needs business advice.

Jan 10, 2015
Gargle in France

Mayday Mayday : Angela's Banh Mi is no more !

Yeah, I know what you mean, the Camels only ride into town once a month with fresh supplies of baguette, carrot, pate, fish sauce, etc. And then all the Banh Mi ladies try to grab what they can. No wonder she keeps rrunning out.

Anyway, just saying she's not so big on keeping business hours, that's all.

Jan 09, 2015
Gargle in France

Mayday Mayday : Angela's Banh Mi is no more !

So far, two out of two failed attempts - once I stopped by at 12:30 and the shop was closed. Today around 2pm she was out of food and locking up.

When you factor in the cost of going there twice, this Banh Mi is getting too expensive for me :)

Jan 08, 2015
Gargle in France

(Paris) L'Ambroisie, any recent review/report ?

Pacaud Sr. stopped showing up on a daily basis about two years ago. It's even possible that Pacaud Jr. wasn't in the kitchen on the day of your visit as he is involved with the opening of Hexagone. Like Bras, unfortunately, the son is not the father (and it would be silly to think that someone would be able to follow in the footsteps of these singular individuals just because of family relations) and I'll leave it at that.

Jan 08, 2015
Gargle in France

Neige d'Eté?

Having had their food - the game and truffle menu to be exact - I think you would have no idea that it's "Japanese cheffed" had the kitchen were closed and the FOH been French. It was all Briffard all the time (including the colvert+veal+foie pithivier in his recognizable style). If anything, it suffered from trying to maintain a big-brigade style that is not much in fashion (what you think of as too perfect). I think I'd be somewhat underwhelmed if I had the regular menu based on what I saw at nearby tables, but this menu (at 95 Euro) is very good.

The ambiance and decor are lacking although in Japanese they're a bit better (and they only take about an hour to believe you can actually speak). I have nothing particularly good to say about the wine list either. Also, the worst forks I've handled in recent memory, totally out of balance, uncomfortably thin even for my baby-sized hands.

Jan 07, 2015
Gargle in France

Lucas Carton

Thanks! I hope to make it there this week.

Jan 07, 2015
Gargle in France

REMINISCENSE OF BYGONE PARISIAN DINING-THE ERA OF ELEGANCE

Porte 12 is indeed a great example - if this is what the current scene has going for it vs Arpege of 1996, then you're proving the OP's point in spades.

eta: also interesting is that the exhibit is from the past couple of months - I guess everything that opened between the late 90s and this September no longer counts, which is symptomatic of a focus on the latest, even though it is not the greatest.

Jan 05, 2015
Gargle in France

REMINISCENSE OF BYGONE PARISIAN DINING-THE ERA OF ELEGANCE

Not worth it

Jan 04, 2015
Gargle in France

REMINISCENSE OF BYGONE PARISIAN DINING-THE ERA OF ELEGANCE

There are certain types of eating that are better, and certain that are worse. Professional but cynical, rude and evil waiters give way to total amateurs who will send out your entire meal at once. Lulu's l'Assiette is now someone else's and it is a different place - more approachable (Euro-wise) and less smokey, but also less...

Overall I would state that if cost is not an issue, and if you are only interested in French cuisine then dining was far better 20 years ago.

Jan 03, 2015
Gargle in France

REMINISCENSE OF BYGONE PARISIAN DINING-THE ERA OF ELEGANCE

Well, I would be happy to repeat many of these firsts, but there is no opportunity to do so. The genre is in such collapse (not financially, their dining rooms are full, but culturally) and the value proposition so lousy... a younger version of us can experience many other firsts but not the same ones, somewhat for good, but more so for bad.

Jan 03, 2015
Gargle in France

REMINISCENSE OF BYGONE PARISIAN DINING-THE ERA OF ELEGANCE

We cut our teeth at Duquesnoy but the number of firsts at Arpege... first serious wine, first Lievre, first homard bleu... it's really a type of experience that has vanished. But I think we stayed on rue Muguet.

Jan 02, 2015
Gargle in France

REMINISCENSE OF BYGONE PARISIAN DINING-THE ERA OF ELEGANCE

Do you remember the cheese cart at Arpege? It is so sad now, the small tables, the crowd, the idiocy of beets...

Jan 02, 2015
Gargle in France

Saturne

We ended up going and had an excellent meal*. They've corrected the reservation link issue, but of course I can't say if that means a change in the policy of canceling reservations without notice.

Not that we should be encouraging bad behavior, but I'd recommend that you go too.

* without any hyperbole, all of the food for two cost the same as a single appetizer at Gagnaire the night before, and it wasn't just better (for my palate) but also made using ingredients that were just as good.

Dec 31, 2014
Gargle in France

4+ dinners in Paris

Be careful - Clamato may be open, but it's the Z team in the kitchen.

Dec 31, 2014
Gargle in France

Red wine: the fountain of youth?

Absolutely, but then we know wine too is often much more than just grapes and time, with many undocumented additives...

Anyway, just don't pretend you're drinking it for health benefits, you're drinking it because it's delicious and boozy. :)

Dec 29, 2014
Gargle in France
2

Red wine: the fountain of youth?

Yeah, resveratrol activates some of the same pathways as caloric restriction, unfortunately it is accompanied by alcohol :)

Dec 29, 2014
Gargle in France

Trip Report

Maybe stufferlim can ask for fried rice!

Dec 25, 2014
Gargle in Japan

Paris: Cave a manger / Bar a vins

I asked my friend the urologist. He said any pathogen that may have a theoretical ability to do this is killed within 60 minutes in wine. However, the acidity of wine can greatly impact its ability to cause inflammation and subsequent infection.

Dec 24, 2014
Gargle in France