Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The New Splendido, Two Wonderful Meals

Posted by Josh

Meal #1
I have had a number of truly fine meals at the new Splendido restaurant. It is highly flavourful bistro cuisine taken to an elevated level, but at reasonable prices. My meals there have been so enjoyable, I just wanted to share my enjoyment of the dishes with my many passionate food friends and acquaintances who are looking for this kind of experience.

I began with a first course of whole roasted suckling pig, which was done perfectly, topped with a nice piece of crackling and served with boudin noir, spiced sweet potato puree, roasted shallots and an intensely flavourful pork jus. If you love pork and if you love suckling pig, this dish will stand over the experience of many others.

Our next mini course was braised Rising Star venison served on a bed of gruyere de grote and thyme flavoured polenta.

Then, whole roasted chicken breast (Nathan’s Farm) with thigh confit, roasted autumn vegetables and roast chicken jus. Once more, if you love a very tasty chicken such as the haute poulet de bresse, you will certainly enjoy this chicken experience. It is not bresse chicken but it is an Ontario equivalent.

Finally, we made room for an addictive sticky toffee pudding which had my guest, who was "abstaining from carbs", after tasting, picking up the iron serving container and scooping the last bits from around the crevaces of the pot!!!

We decided we also had room for rum raisin ice cream with rice pudding, white chocolate and passion fruit, papaya, mango and pineapple topped with a bit of lime chili salt.

Meal #2

To begin, we started with hors d'oeuvres of pata negra (Spanish acorn fed ham), sweetbread tartlet, chef Victor’s "ham and cheese" and truffled elk tartar. Then, our first course of butter poached lobster came liberally coated with shaved white alba truffles and jerusalem artichoke purèe. This was a spectacular dish!

Our following course was chef Victor’s  signature dish of foie gras "parfait" with a slice of toasted brioche, apple walnut cauliflower salad and vanilla apple purèe.

Then, one of the reasons for me visiting Splendido so often, more than a steak house, is chef Victor's cap de boeuf  seared then cooked sous-vide. This is Cumbrae's beef at its best, aged 60 days and the cooking handled perfectly. This sous vide version is not typically on the menu and if you are looking to enjoy the dish, please request that the restaurant, when you make you reservation, have the chef prepare this dish for you and any guests wishing to try this wonderful beef experience. It was served with pine mushroom and parmigiano gnocchi and a thyme peppercorn jus.

Then, the chef served us a surprise indulgence, vacherin Mont d’Or in which slices of fresh black and white truffles were not only mixed into the cheese well in advance of our dinner, but also, when served, liberally topped with fresh molise black and white alba truffles. What an  experience!!!

Our pre-dessert was a perfect complement for our Chateau Y'Quem 1962 , a lovely pumpkin soufflé served with hazelnut ice cream and hazelnut anglaise.

The final dessert, a spy apple tart with rum vanilla ice cream was served with a 5yr old El Dorado rum anglaise and that just finished us off!!!

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