rrouilly's Profile

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Quince in Evanston?

Oceanique is extremely good - agree with the poster who said it is the best in Evanston. Parking was never that big of a deal when we went, but then, we were willing to walk a bit. Otherwise, we used the valet.

Trio under Gand/Tramonto was a lot more pleasant than Tru, IMHO. Their generousity came through a lot better. The whole Tru thing is just so "yeah, baby!" Achatz shines wherever he goes...an unusual talent.

Also like Campagnola quite a bit. The food has integrity.

May 15, 2007
rrouilly in Chicago Area

A Walk along the Seine

Agree with Phil. The French respect the concept of good value for a good price. You are better off saving your pennies by skipping your hotel breakfast (unless included) in favor of breakfast in a boulangerie, taking simple lunches of sandwich stuff from the outdoor markets, and then enjoying your savings at some of the good value set menu places that emphasize what was good in the market that day.

There are quite a few traditional bistros within walking distance where you can get a very nice meal for around 35 EUR (often including a glass of wine) which would be a challenge to match in any large city in the states. For example, you could try L'Arpent or Le Coude a Coude in the 1e, L'Abordage or Entre Nous in the 8e. The "menu" or "formule" is your friend here - this is the fixed price menu. If you can only do one, take Phil's advice - those are both excellent choices.

The food culture in France is famous for a reason. It would be a shame to miss it.

May 15, 2007
rrouilly in France

Maiden's Prayer

Hmmm....this sounds quite nice. What is the history of this drink?

May 15, 2007
rrouilly in Recipes

The Zuni Cafe Cookbook

Gougeres is a good choice.

Make the roast chicken. Do it exactly as she says. That pre-salting technique is great and the bread salad thing is lovely with it.

This will change your way of roasting a chicken forever.

May 15, 2007
rrouilly in Features

A Walk along the Seine

Agree with the other posters...a meal where a server brings your meal while you sit at a table for 10 EUR is out. But no matter. You can picnic very well from the outdoor markets on a park bench. In this area, you might want to pay a visit to the patisserie Stohrer, at 51 rue Montorgueil 2e and get a little something sweet for the end. The shop has lovely decorations from the mid 19th century. You might also check out Rose Bakery at 46 rue des Martyrs 9e, which has a number of nice take out options both sweet and savory.

May 13, 2007
rrouilly in France

Paris Without a Budget

Visiting Paris for the very first time in the month of August is a plan you should probably rethink. Coming in August might be okay if you come to Paris regularly and don't have a list of "must do's" but otherwise, July and especially August is not the time to come, especially if you have a grand meal in mind. The odd restaurant that is open will be catering to foreign tourists exclusively, as the French really do go on vacation at the same time, so keep in mind that the ambience in the dining room will reflect that.

A much better time to come is early autumn if you can possibly manage it. Late September/early October is ideal. As for the Parisian "rioters", the famous Mark Twain quote "reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated" is instructive here...

May 13, 2007
rrouilly in France

what to bring on a 12 hour flight

Whether you're going to Asia or Europe from the U.S., these flights are pretty awful. My approach is eat to lightly and have plenty of protein and water in the days before the flight - also get enough rest. I have a nice meal before leaving for the airport, but nothing too heavy - remember, those airline bathrooms are not really pleasant the morning after the overnight flight (sorry, but these details count). Then, I pack dry stuff like almonds, chocolate bars, whatever; I don't want to have a debate with a person in a uniform about whether fresh fruit is a security risk. It's just not worth it.

I also get a tiny presciption for sleeping pills (which I usually never take) but nothing too strong, since I want to be alert in case of emergency. I also bring earplugs, an eyemask and one of those thin wool stoles to use as a blanket. I bring a toothbrush and a mini tube of toothpaste, since I'll feel better if I brush my teeth in the morning on the flight. I put on loose clothes and soft soled shoes and try to pack as lightly as possible to avoid aggravation, which makes the I-pod about the best thing ever invented for the entertainment of long distance travellers.

At the airport, I buy the biggest bottle of water I can find after security; I might even buy two. I'll drink a lot of water, but pretty much resolve not of eat unless I get really hungry. When I do get hungry, I eat some of my snacks. I'll drink some juice offered by the airline if I feel like it. Once there's about 10 hours to go on the flight (or sooner if I get really bored or irritated) I'll take a sleeping pill and doze off.

This is a strategy honed over years of finding out what does and doesn't work for me. It makes a very irritating process somewhat less painful and getting some sleep on the flight makes the jet lag recovery a bit easier. The earplugs are essential - I recommend the foam ones.

To those of you who "don't care" whether the smell of your food offends others on your flight - hear, hear! Let me know what flight you'll be on so I can sit next to you and share my anchovy, kimchee and pastrami with extra aioli sandwich. Dee-licious and really holds one over on those long-haul flights.

May 13, 2007
rrouilly in Not About Food

To See a World in a Grain of Dry Ice

The point of the glucose is that it creates a smoother product, as it retards crystalization of the other sugars. Corn syrup is a form of glucose. Glucose in free or combined form is probably the most abundant organic compound found in nature, so calling it evil seems a little irrational, although obviously ingesting it in the form of, say, several Big Gulps per day is probably ill advised.

It seems unlikely that anyone will be eating any large quatities of this ice cream, given how labor intensive it is to make, so I think we're probably safe from the corn syrup demons and it seems kind of fun.

May 13, 2007
rrouilly in Features

Pegu Club Cocktail

I'm with you danoots. The very idea! Color is not more important than taste.

Cointreau please. A tad of sugar syrup for balance. Use decent quality gin. One dash of orange bitters wouldn't go awry.

May 13, 2007
rrouilly in Recipes

Garbo Gargle Cocktail

I could hardly resist a cocktail with Garbo in the name...but creme de menthe with orange juice? The imaginary palate recoils.

I think the dashes are superfluous here. Garbo wasn't really the dashy type anyway. After removing the dashes, I'd probably substitute gin for the brandy, but that probably makes it a whole different cocktail, I guess.

May 13, 2007
rrouilly in Recipes