Tuesday, September 28, 2010

No Menu Monday

I've been wanting to go to Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen's No Menu Monday for quite some time now. On the last Monday of each month the chefs put out a special four course menu....& they don't tell you what you're eating until it's set down in front of you. It's kind of exhilarating to give myself over & not have control over a meal. I'm game for just about anything really, you name it I'll eat it. Kelly & I reserved a table with our friend Lindsey. Knowing how pork happy Chefs Michael Hudman & Andrew Ticer are I called ahead to inquire if they could do a vegetarian "No Menu". The manager said of course & we were on our way.

After getting a few outstanding cocktails from Shawn the bartender (he mixes one hell of a drink!) we were seated at a comfortable out on the back patio with a view of the garden. His Champagne Cocktail has a hint of sprightly sweetness but it's balanced with a floral characteristic from honey & gin. Quite nice.

Fall was finally happening & we were reveling in it! Our first course was Arancini (fried risotto balls) stuffed with veal cheeks & porcini. Sorry but no pic on this one.

After this course we popped open a bottle I picked up during Oregon Pinot Camp last year

The Shea Vineyard produces some very dark, masculine & brooding wines which was exactly what we were in the mood for.

Up next was a dish that will go down as one of the best dishes I've eaten in 2010.

Fried pig ears, pears, gorgonzola & caramelized radicchio. Oh...my...damn. The ears were crispy, unctuous & gelatinous the cheese was creamy & pungent, the pears were sweet & the radicchio earthy. Good lord, it was fantastic.

Then we got a bowl of housemade meatballs with a gorgonzola bechamel & a rosemary marinara. Very warm with hints of spicy meatiness.

After that were rabbit stuffed cannelloni.

This was my least favorite dish. Both Lindsey & I were confused as to what the protein even was & the sauce was a bit thin & bland. However I will stress that nearly any dish would have a hard time standing up to the fried pig ears.

Dessert was quite nice

Pumpkin panna cotta (probably some pork fat in there too) with pork fat caramel corn, marshmallows & dried cranberries that were finely diced, almost to a dusting, & sprinkled over the top. Very fall & very delicious.

I'm looking forward to the next one.


Justin Fox Burks said...

what did they make for kelly? I must know!

Michael Hughes said...

I'm not sure because he didn't let me have any of it.

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