Chef Cesar Ramirez runs a tight ship, to say the least. The reputation of this three starred Michelin restaurant made us really want to go but the hoops you have to jump through make it so that I would not go again. The place holds just 18 people around a spotless stainless steel square counter with one chef inside the square filling water glasses and cleaning plates but he does no cooking. There are also a couple of ladies outside the counter that help push in your closely quartered bar stool and fill your wine as well as
put out new flatware. The chef came by to visit a couple of times but disappeared when the meal ended. It is a fairly quick meal as they want to turn over the seats. We were in the first group of 10 and another group of 8 arrived 45 minutes later and all were to be turned over for second seatings. There is a rather strict and archaic dress code – no jeans or short sleeve shirts and jackets required for men. He also prohibits photographs and note taking. It would seem to me that price point you would have a more relaxed meal with a little more interaction with the chefs, who except the aforementioned one, stand behind the other counter.
I took a chance and got a shot of Frankie on the counter and one of the room but no pictures of the food, most of which was good but not outstanding. The desserts were the weakest point.
Here’s what we had to the best of my recollection, and I’m sure I’m forgetting some things:
A small pastry shell filled with caviar – nice but for one bite it was very large
Japanese uni which was delicious
Crab – very mild
Lobster with butter sauce – thank goodness for all the butter
Grilled vegetables which were nice and had a great sauce which unfortunately was the ugliest color ever and made the dish somewhat unappetizing
Faux shuffle which was very airy but mostly tasteless
Huckleberry ice cream with huckleberries which was a beautiful color and so tart it ruined your palate