Friday, May 12, 2006

Tasting Menu

I won't bore you with the details of how I found this site. Suffice it to say this is one that you should look at, particularly if you're interesting in food or photos of food. The site is called Tasting Menu, and is mostly a blog of sorts. This guy eats out a lot, and likes to take pictures of the dishes and write about them, but not in the way that one might expect from a critic. In fact, he doesn't seem to see himself as a critic; he just sees himself as a guy that loves food, and loves to share his culinary experiences with people.

I wasn't planning on posting this link until I read his philosophy post, and noticed his comments about Thomas Keller, an American chef known even to the French as one of the best in the world. About five weeks into cooking school, the guy in the dorm room across the hall from me showed me the French Laundry Cookbook, and explained one of Keller's concepts. In a nutshell: the first bite is exciting, and the second bite almost as much so. But by the third bite, you're just eating. You may still enjoy it, but the initial excitement is gone. That's why when you go to the French Laundry, you will get several very small, but masterfully prepared courses.

The guy at Tasting Menu talks about the evils of the entree, and praises the concept of the appetizer. This is what really caught my eye. I have two obsessions with food. The first, stemming from my art student days in high school, is plated desserts. I am completely and utterly fascinated with them. The second is appetizers. In fact, what I really love is artfully-prepared finger food. Most appetizers and tapas fit into this category. I love that if there are enough appetizers, you can experience a wide range of exciting tastes, and still end up eating less food, which helps with my belt line.

Anyway, check out this site, and make sure you take a look at the two free cookbooks available for download, All About Apples and Autumn Omakase.

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