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The end of lobster season is mid-march,

so you can bet there will be another HUGE dinner in the next few weeks… For now, I wanted to share some food and wine pairings from some dinners with accompanying pictures.  What is life without wine?


When I build the menu, (I could keep building if people could keep eating!) I try to either build it around a specific ingredient such as lobster or a dry-aged beef(but usually around something that is hunted or caught, not farmed) or around certain bottles that are begging to be opened.  Where I could, I linked the specific bottle(s) to the dishes.  For the Lobster Dinner, champagne was an obvious pairing, but I got some different heavier wines that could hold up to preparations including cream like the Etna Bianco, or some that already taste like the ocean a bit like the Pigato grape.  Also pair regionally i.e. Germans eat a lot of pork, so we went with a Riesling Spätlese.  I could make excuses or arguments for or against a grape – sometimes we just need an excuse to open some bottles, enjoy good company, STFU and smile 🙂



Lobster & Champagne Dinner February

  • California Spiny Lobster Sashimi. Many champagnes including: 1) N.V. Vilmart & Cie Champagne Grand Cellier d’Or 1er (Premier Cru), 2) Agrapart & Fils Blanc de Blanc, 3) Moet Chandon, champagne imperial & 4) rose imperial, 5)Veuve, 6) Agrapart & Fils Terroirs Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Champagne blend
  • Octopus Carpaccio that I took off the menu because I got sick from it (allergic reaction to the raw preparation. Fine for the braised prep, but didn’t want to risk it).  See, eating food is rough…
  • Chargrilled Spiny lobster w/ curry oil, bell pepper sauce, boiled fingerling potato, sour cream & micro cilantro Pigato wine
  • Butter poached lobster w/ Leek Ravioli & Lobster Bisque shooter Etna Bianco volcanic soil, old vine 2009
  • Duck leg, chicken gizzard & heart confit (and if that wasn’t enough) it was wrapped in a puff pastry w/ wine reduction Flowers Pinot
  • Roast Berkshire Pork belly, braised cabbage & Swiss chard, 2001 Forster Jesuitengarten Riesling Spätlese
  • Grilled lamb chop w/ creamy mashed potatoes, mushroom cream sauce, 2009 Bourgogne Domaine Maume
  • California Spinies

duck leg, chicken gizzard, chicken heart confit in puff pastry & red wine reduction w/ oyster mushrooms.  Hope your arteries are healthy

Leek Ravioli, butter poached lobster paired w/ lobster bisque shooter

chargrilled lobster, curry oil, boiled fingerling potatoes, sour cream, red mullet roe(bottarga)

the lobster’s not gonna catch itself!

Duo dinner Random January Dinner 2
  • Organic butter lettuce salad w/ lobster, mustard & molasses vinaigrette, pancetta, and fried quail egg
  • Duo of raw oysters: Fanny Bay oysters, Local. Only one way to eat them for me! Reserve the juice, wash, ice the oysters, and re-hydrate with strained shell-less juice.  lemon, cocktail, 2 drops of tabasco
  • Special delicious lamb dish that chef Ori made and brought over – name wont be released till Bestia restaurant opens  :p
  • Linguine w/ live Manila clams and Bottarga cooked w/ red pepper, white wine
  • Duo of quail – roasted farmed quail and roasted wild quail with red & white wine reduction (taste winner: wild quail, except the single shotgun pellet in mine :))
  • Duo Jacob sheep: braised Jacob sheep backbone w/ San Marzano tomatoes, herbs, stock / grilled medium rare filet mignon & dirty Chinatown string beans
  • Goat’s milk Rice pudding, candied orange peel, pine nuts & pistachio

We eat a lot of oysters here: malpeque, kushi, kumamoto, fanny bay, blue point. Yasuda to the girl and guy on a date sitting next to us: “We have best oyster in the US.”  Girl cringes at the thought of oyster.  Girl says to the guy she doesn’t want oyster.  Guy to Yasuda: Just one oyster for me.  Yasuda says: Oyster. Good for man.  Guy chuckles.
I laugh. He needs all the help he can get.

Jacob Sheep my good buddy Warren hunted.  We ended up making a lot of braises from it including Braised w/ root vegetables & Italian version of chimichurri sauce.  Rolled & stuffed w/ rosemary & sheep stock, and rice porridge.  yum yum!
Random January Dinner
  • Watercress & Wild arugula salad, bacon lardons, ground chicken liver, crispy blood sausage, sherry vinaigrette, poached egg
  • Crostini of organic chicken hearts, bacon fat mayonnaise w/ spicy paprika, balsamic & simple syrup reduction
  • Homemade tagliatelle w/ veal & beef ragu, parmiggiano-reggiano, Monsanto 2007 chianti classico. (Chianti + Tomatoes = <3. That’s a heart, not a hadoken)
  • Crow (yes crow) cooked rare, w/ parsley salad. It was on a farm.  With a good taste, but a slight tang aftertaste.
  • Wild mallard duck crostini w/ shallots, egg, beurre-insigny, Ghemme nebbiolo wine
  • Braised pork ribs w/ white wine, mustard vinaigrette
  • Prime outside skirt steak, sautéed bok-choy & scallions, acciughate sauce, Ripasso Valpolicella
breasting the crow
the best duck I ever had.
Ori paying respect to his Mallard
Jidori Chicken heart crostini

Birthday Dinner for my dad’s 60th Mighta been overkill on the wines  Not possible.  Food was great. Wine pairings worked and the last 4 were superb.

  • Taylor Shellfish Shigoku Oyster, Dom Perignon 2002
  • Scallop Ceviche, Greens, Hawaiian Lava Salt, Luca Chardonnay
  • Bluefin Tuna Belly Maguro Akami & O-Toro, Vilmart et Cie Grand Reserve Champagne
  • Alaskan Salmon w/ Celery root puree, shitake mushrooms, Melville Carrie’s Vineyard Pinot Noir 2008
  • Santa Barbara live spot Prawn w/ Grade A Seared Foie Gras & fig sauce, 2007 La Tour Blanche Sauternes
  • Roast Liberty Duck, sautéed spinach w/ saba sauce, 2007 Roessler La Encantada Pinot Noir
  • Colorado Lamb Chops, fettuccine with parmesan cream sauce, black truffles, 1989 Château Mouton-Rothschild & 1996 Château Pichon Longueville Baron
  • Rocket Brothers Dry-Aged Bone-in Ribeye, creamy mashed potatoes, 2001 Tobreck Run Rig Shiraz & Nicolas Catena Zapata 2007
  • Pear & Pistachio tart,
  • Chocolate cake. lots of Port. 🙂

No pictures was too busy cooking!



the idiom goes…leave no bottle left unopened. obliged.


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