Sunday, December 20, 2009

San Fran - Day 2

Today is a great day to walk around the city.  It's warm, the sun is out, and I've finally got some energy again.
I take Market south and zig-zag my way towards the center of the peninsula.  I slowly but deliberately make my way to Absinthe Brasserie and Bar.  The chef of Absinthe is a petite tatoo-covered little firecracker named Jamie Lauren.  I know Jamie well, as we lived together for six weeks a year ago filming Top Chef.  It's my first time to her place and I'm very excited.  It's a classic brasserie - huge wooden bar with mirrors, french poster art on the walls, a great cocktail list, and a fantastic menu featuring a huge list of cheeses, local meats and vegetables, and of course, onion soup.

I take a seat at the well-worn bar and ask if Jamie's around.  She happens to be speaking to a large table in the back dining room about Top Chef.  I make a surprise appearance and the table seems to really be enjoying themselves.  We snap a few pics and then I sit down to eat.
Jamie hooks me up with the best french onion soup I've ever eaten and then I move on to the sandwich that really caught my eye:  pork confit.  It's pork shoulder (I think) slow-cooked in it's own fat.  Nestled on crusty rustic bread with arugula and onions, it's just what I was looking for.
It's Friday and Jamie's got to get back into the kitchen and get ready for service.  I make my way back towards my hotel.

Tonight my dear friend Judy and her friends are doing a little dinner for me.  They are really having a good time with it and even print menus.  I certainly enjoy watching them take their time with the duck legs and fig tart.  When asked how they would do on a show, I tell them they're both fired for taking too long!

Dinner turns out great.  We start with some amazing fresh bread from Tartine (link), cheeses, and prosciutto.  First course is seared scallops with truffle cream.  Second is roast duck legs with fresh cherries and port, and dessert is a fig galette with homemade ice cream.  We also happen to polish about 16 bottles of great wine.  So needless to say, dinner is a success.

We all go out to dance off some of the calories and alcohol now dominating our systems.  Great fun, great food, and another great night to remember...

1 comment:

  1. humm that pic of the main dish dsnt look so hot. i know i know i owe you some CDs of foto footage... its getting there!! happy new year bigH!