December 14, 2022 - Frasca’s Annual Truffle Dinner
These are simply “can’t miss” dinners! They had so much demand for these that they expanded from one night to a week and now to the whole month of December. There will be a lot more explanation this time since we used Siri dictation on an iPhone for almost the whole meal. Poor Martin has a lot of editing to do! This is a big page so lots of scrolling will be needed.
To clearly distinguish between the menu and our descriptions, quotes from the menu will be in a Helvetica Neue font, our descriptions will be in the usual Times New Roman font.
They do a really amazing job at setting the stage. This time it’s White Phalaenopsis Orchids.
The menu is prix fixe, so there were no choices to be made. It has to be this way to make sure the wine pairings work and they did!
Krug M.V. Brut “Grand Cuvée” | Montagne de Reims, France
Yes, we really did have Krug for our first course! It is the best champagne I’ve ever had. An intense citrus nose to it even!
This is an amuse-bouche and is a surprise not on the menu. There are two pairs of treats. The leftmost is mountain huckleberry on a small buckwheat cake possibly topped with white chocolate. They contrast nicely. The rightmost, we think, is a dark chocolate shell filled with truffled chocolate.
A S S A G G I
alba truffle custard • crispy chicken skin • sauce soubise & smoked maple chestnut & brown butter financier • fontal & white sturgeon caviar whipped foie gras • buckwheat • huckleberry & licorice
I’m not quite sure how to fully describe our first course. Assaggi means taste or sample. As you can see it’s complicated! It’s actually served in an eggshell. The custard is intensely truffled, amazingly rich, and creamy. Bill agrees with this description.
The caviar picked up some of the smoke from the butter and its own intense sea flavor came through nicely. The buckwheat cake is a really neat contrast, a bit lighter.
The wild mountain huckleberries had a hint of citrusy flavor. The whole dish is just wow!
rodolphe le meunier beurre de baratte
Rodolphe Le Meunier, the famed Loire Valley cheesemaker also makes exquisite butter. Here it's been molded into the proper size to butter a slice of the bread at the right and topped with bits of gold foil.
A different sourdough. This is a truffled brioche sourdough. It was a good deal more flavorful than a simple brioche is. The truffle wasn’t too strong, but definitely was there for a delightful touch.
Remi Jobard 2020 Bourgogne Blanc| Burgundy, France
This was a really big white. Interestingly, it had a touch of color to it, rather than being absolutely transparent. The wine is amazing light and fresh and yet still fairly full and well-rounded. It stood up well to the charcoal grilled scallops
Martin managed to miss getting a photo of this course ☹️.
C A P E S A N T E
charcoal grilled scallop • sea butter • smoked roe & black truffle
There was a dash of the smoke coming through on the scallops. I had never even heard of smoked row, but it worked amazingly well.
B O T T O N I I N B R O D O
white embden goose • pork fat • crispy sage • bianco nero
The embden goose is a very large goose, originating in the 13th century in what we now call Germany. What’s inside the pasta cups is absolutely heavenly. Really light and fresh and yet it’s a rich meat stuffing in the light bright Brodo, which just accentuates it. I am not letting any of this brodo escape!
Remi Jobard 2020 Bourgogne Blanc| Burgundy, France
Dark as a Zinfandel but not as overwhelming. I’d call it a medium red. It had an intense grape nose to it with a hint of citrus, a lot of strawberry and some stone fruit, and maybe some plum. Really nice and paired perfectly with this dish. It has a bit of tannin right after being opened.
Later on, it opened up to berries, mostly strawberry still.
T A J A R I N
buckwheat • brown butter • juniper and black truffle
Noodles made with buckwheat black truffle butter and black truffle on the top as well. A very rich butter sauce, the truffles are a little subdued in the background. The buckwheat noodles are definitely very strong and in the foreground. It looks sort of like one of the big wheat pillows of shredded wheat breakfast cereal😉
Domaine Julien 2019 Côt di Nuits-Villages “Armand” | Burgundy, France
Well balanced red cherry and current the sommelier says. I’ll pretty much go with that, but add that there’s some mineral to it as well.
Jean Louis Chave | Northern Rhône, France
This is big red and it needed to be to pair properly with foie gras, dry aged beef and the duxelles.
M A N Z O
cedar smoked dry aged beef • foie gras • burnt pine bud honey duxelle & sauce perigueux
The foie gras (at the bottom) is strong and exquisite buttery and silky smooth. The pine nut duxelles are unbelievably smooth and creamy The honey flavor really comes through. Wow I’ve never had anything like this! I think the cut of beef is New York strip(at the left). The foie gras is simply too rich to have more than just a nibble at a time. The sauce perigueux is perfect.
The Monza course is the most impressive of all, even though it used only black truffles Sauce perigueux is definitely under appreciated.
Domaine La Tour Vieille Banyuls Rimage 2019 | Roussillon, France
This dessert wine is somewhat fortified with a bit of a jammy strawberry note. Incredibly full-bodied, this is wine jam!
C R O S T A T A S O U F F L È
black truffle cremeaux • hazelnut • 70% chocolate • rosemary
We have a chocolate truffle cremeaux with shaved truffles on top. Oh my, it’s like a warm flourless cake but uniquely different!
Amazingly powerful chocolate flavor. the rich wine complements it perfectly There are small crunchy bits that make it even more interesting. They are probably the hazelnuts.
G H I A C C I O D I M E L E. C O T O G N E
chamomile • sheep ricotta • buddha’s hand
Those are chamomile blossoms on top of the icy ricotta cheese. The sauce, made from buddha’s hand lemons was really bright and went well with the ricotta.
A complete surprise! The wrapped candies are caramel soaked in apple cider vinegar, surprisingly good. The red ones have passion fruit in them and are bright, bright, bright! The white ones had a crunchy shell and a stiff cake in them, again like nothing we’d ever had before.