an egg is an egg...meditating at the Museo Miró in Barcelona

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Café 56

Breakfast on a Saturday...what better than going to Café 56

Chicken and Chorizo Hash with a fried egg and cranberry walnut toast!


Another theme dinner with 8:00 seating [sold out as usual]. The dinner this time was based on food from Guatemala. This also featured a certain region where the cuisine was based on meat. The first course was a tostada filled with meat, beets and herbs with a drizzle of creme fraiche.

The main course was a stew with four meats in a delicious broth with avocado. This also had tamal made with fresh corn and a slice of tortilla. Very filling and delicious.

Dessert was sweet plaintain filled with black beans, a puff of dough and cherries.


Huitlacoche is something you have to get used to; the sight uncooked that is because it is delicious and very unassuming used as an ingredient. Last night at the monthly dinner, Sabrina used it in the first course in her Cinco de Mayo [actually Neuve de Mayo] meal. The fungus was mixed with goat cheese and filled an incredibly light crepe. Delicious!

The rest of the meal was as great. Started with pickled carrots, onions and peppers with a side dish of guacamole surrounded by a sauce of tomatillo and honey. Then on to the crepes with a Chile Relleno as the main course. Dessert was a piece of artwork consisting of tres leches, chocolate and a churro.


After a long meeting I ran into Café 56 for a late breakfast [was too late] or an early lunch. Lucked out with the soup-of-the-day which was Vatapa, a Brazilian seafood chowder. It was fantastic and I took the side salad home so I could just concentrate on the flavors of the chowder.

Also bought a prepared food item [my first] of Lamb Pot Pie [$5.50]. It looks terrific and will heat it up for dinner tonight. Well, I just finished the Lamb Pot Pie and it was delicious. Was going to eat half of it and save the other half; that didn't happen. Lots of tender, moist  well seasoned lamb with carrots and other veggies with a piped mashed potato crust. Yum!

January 11, 2014
As you can see it has been a while since I have revisited Café 56. All who know me understand that I really like to eat [20 thousand+ people on this blog alone]. My taste varies but I have few dislikes when it comes to food. When I don't like something though I will note that on this blog. So here goes.

Today's brunch was pure PERFECTION and this rating does not come easily. Two perfectly cooked poached eggs over delectable Crab Hash with a silky lemon hollandaise accompanied with sourdough toasted bread with a side of onion jam. It does not get better than this!

August 2, 2013

Theme dinner for the month of August was Caribbean Night

Amuse Bouche: Jamaican Jerk Chicken Wings and Corn Fritters. This was a hot, hot and spicy way to start the evening. Along with a dipping sauce the wings and fritters were delightful.

First Course: Crab and Conch Callaloo Soup. The creamy crab and crunchy conch swam in a bowl full of heaven laden with callaloo greens.

Main Course: Grenada Spice Encrusted Dorado with a Barbados Butter Sauce. This white meaty fish with its crunchy spice crust was enveloped with a smooth and elegant butter sauce. Yucca Fries and Hearts of Palm complemented the dish and the Green Papaya shreds added a beautiful finishing touch. This course caused groans of delight from every table.

Dessert: Banana and Sweet Potato Cake served with a Coquimel Sauce adorned with Brittle and dotted with Tamarind Paste. What a way to end a perfect meal.

Next month [second Friday of September] theme is Latin American Street Food and I will miss this dinner!

blognote: I hate photographing white and clear glass plates.

June 14, 2013

Dinner for the Month of June: This month's theme was Southern Spain with a superb menu, the best yet. Another great prix-fixe meal [$25].

Started with Tapas of Manchego Cheese, Salchichon, Aioli, Morrocan Oil preserved Olives and Tortilla Española. Then on to a first course of Gazpacho Andaluz so smooth and creamy with a little kick. Third course was a beautiful Paella mar y tierra made with Arroz Bomba and topped with Chorizo, Chicken, Mussels, Clams, Shrimp and Scallops. Fantastic and made for four with plenty to take home. The rice was the very best.

Dessert was Flan with a Churro for embellishment. What a great meal in such an intimate atmosphere.

May 10, 2013

Dinner of the Month for May. This month’s theme was Peru. The menu was again a wonderful prix-fixe [$25] Here is the menu:

Papa a la Huancaína [potatoes in a Huancina sauce which is a rich creamy tangy delight to spread on baby boiled potatoes. Delicious. We had to have an additional serving of potatoes to use up the sauce.

Peruvian Ceviche: Halibut ceviche with corn and concha. Tangy with a bite and so fresh tasting.

Duck and Chicken for the next course served with white beans and cilantro rice. This dish rocked and worked so well together. The sweet beans and the rice served as a beautiful background for the chicken and the gorgeous piece of duck.

Dessert was Arroz con Leche [rice pudding] with Alfajorres [the shortbread stuffed with dulce de leche]. A sweet ending to a spicy, tasty and well prepared dinner. Loved it all!

Next month’s theme is Southern Spain with Tapas and Paella.


Dinner of the Month for April. This month's theme was Guatemala. The menu was a wonderful prix-fixe [$25]. Here is the menu:

Antojitos: Chojin de Rabano [radish relish] and Guacamole Chapin [Guatemalan guacamole] both very delicious with a side basket of chips.

First Course: Jocon Maya de Vegetales [green vegetable stew Mayan style] hearty and smooth.

Main Course: Tamales de Marrano Guatemaltecos servidos con Ensalada de Berro [Guatemalan Tamales with pork and olives served with a Watercress Salad]. The best tamal I have ever eaten. Was it Guatemala or Chef Sabrina [or a combination of both]?

Tamal on a Banana Leaf

Dessert: Torrejas y Manjar servidas con Almibar de Anbis y Dulce de Leche [Spanish 'French' Toast filled with Pastry Cream and Anise Syrup with Dulce de Leche]. Not too rich, not too sweet, just the right ending to a great meal.

I'll be back next month for the Peruvian theme!

February 18, 2013

Wonderful breakfast this morning at Café 56 with friends. We all took advantage of the warm booth in front of the window and the specials:

My Crab Hash with Poached eggs and chipotle hollandaise sauce was delicious but did not photograph well. A Farmers Pancake: Dutch pancake topped with ham two eggs and melted Vermont cheddar finished with a Tomatillo sauce. Two Omelets: scarmosa cheese and sautéed sopresatta rolled and topped with a spinach cream sauce. Everything was great and Chef Sabrina and Baker Ed are such good hosts.

Farmers' Pancake

Friday, July 04, 2014

'rememberable tastes'

I have always said that I have never had a bad meal at Ruby Tuesday in Cromwell but today was the day that broke that honeymoon. You can read all of my excellent reviews anywhere on this site. The picture below, from last year, was raving about a new menu item.

We three started out on a good note with a bright and cheerful server. From there it went downhill as he continually got lost somewhere in the restaurant. Even the hostess couldn't find him so took the reorder. The two orders of Petite Sirloin, both ordered medium rare, bore no resemblance; one being correct and the other well into the medium range. By the time the reorder came it was too late to eat it. Then getting the check and a box for the remains took so long we had to go looking for him again. The coupon, on my iPhone, was for one meal at half-price but was configured so poorly that we had no idea if we were even getting a discount. The hostess was no help, constantly saying 'Sorry', and then asking if we did want to speak with the manager. We gave up and left and will probably not come back. If there had been more than twenty people in the restaurant there might have been an excuse. BUT a poor wait staff, incompetent kitchen and no managerial expertise evident made for a 4th of July lunch gone awry!

January 11, 2013

fish tacos
Ruby Tuesday

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

SIX MAIN Restaurant

And another Prix Fixe dinner tonight [$30]. This time the theme was Farm to Table. Wasn't so successful tonight. Started with Deep-fried Squash Blossoms which were delicious. Then on to the entrée of Tempeh which I try to like but really have decided it's not for me. The dessert was a chocolate type of concoction which was a little too grainy. The glass of Malbec was good. The extra app ordered because I have always wanted to try it - Avocado Fries just doesn't compute - think hot avocado with a coat of cornmeal [$10].


Another Prix Fixe dinner tonight. This time based on Cinnamon: Mulled cider poached apple, frisee, cardamom scented vinaigrette, hazelnuts then Red vegetable curry, black forbidden rice, cinnamon dosa
and to finish Spiced chocolate brownie, fireball ice cream. The bartender paired a Malbec with the meal and it held up quite well with the meal.

In order of preference the dessert was the best, the appetizer next and the entrée last. This doesn't mean I didn't like the curry but the other courses were so good.

October 30, 2013

Exit 6 from Route 9 South to 6 Main Street in Chester for a 6:00 reservation at SIX MAIN Restaurant. Simple, right? Not if you turn right off the ramp and then can't find it on your GPS! Anyway, I have been here before so guess I was thinking too much about the dinner waiting for me.

The three course prix-fixe [$25] vegan dinner was based on beets. There was no wine pairing this week [as advertised for $5] but a Beet-Nik was available [$9] made from Marker's Mark Bourbon, Verna and Tawny Port. This was a very powerful drink even when served over ice and adorned with much mint. It did however hold up very well with the dinner which started with an appetizer of Golden beet borscht with horseradish cream and toasted rye berries that was a creamy delight and a bit of crunch. This was followed by an entrée of Smoked and pickled beets, crispy fried shiitakes [more, more please], celeriac slaw, warm potato salad. The dessert was an extremely delicious Black forest cake with raspberry jam filling and vanilla beet frosting.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Petit Comitè

I had never heard of Petit Comitè before planning my trip to Spain but it kept coming up on blogs and such internet traffic that I thought I would try it. This was one of the best that I have visited in Europe or anywhere.

Reservations in hand [after waiting until 59 days before the date needed], we found the unassuming entrance on the Passatge de lo Concepció a little passageway off the Passeig de Graciá. This was just a short walk from our Hotel Catalonia Berna. We were greeted and seated with drink orders taken right away. From there on it was heaven. The table had an open kitchen view but was secluded enough for conversation. Service was impeccable. The meal took just over three hours to complete.

Our first course was a Coca de Foie which turned out to be some artist's idea of how intricate you could make a foie gras appetizer. This is the picture on the top of the home page. I had the special salad with fresh sardines. There was Garri Rostit, a heavy serving of roast pork and pork belly. I had the Gamba a la brasa with seven huge shrimp simply grilled in olive oil. In between each course there was a little surprise such as the watermelon cubes minus the water and infused with Sangría. There was Vodka, Campari, white wine and Port. There was cherry soup, potato puffs beribboned with Iberian ham. And for dessert there was Pijama explained to be what you might find in the refrigerator on a Sunday night, an assortment of the best from the kitchen. However, my dessert was the most unique: bread, chocolate, olive oil and salt; so delicious I can taste it now.

The rumor is that Chef Nandu Jubany has just received a Michelin star for his other restaurant and will rename this one with just his name. He is a genius and I will be sure to follow his success, hopefully by eating there again.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

and then there are tapas...

Tapas, the ubiquitous gem of culinary Spain, enchant and entice me. They can be the simplest addition to a glass of wine, an array of food for a light lunch or an exquisite start to an evening's romp through the streets...

watermelon with water removed and replaced with sangría

desserts in Spain...

I have separated desserts from individual restaurants because they are a category in themselves. Sometimes they are a simple flan and other times an artistic masterpiece...

Café Cortado and other delights in Spain...

One of my favorite things about Spain [aside from the bread and the wine] is the coffee. I like a café cortado which is espresso but with a tiny bit of foamy warm milk. This is the café noisette that I drink in Paris. But in Spain at a sidewalk café it is so relaxing along with giving enough energy to keep walking.

and the chocolate con churros...

and the gelato...