By Mick Brown
As Caterers, we can’t get all of our inspiration from Googling Recipes. Sometimes we need to travel around, in search of new flavors and techniques. Without creative new Chefs, food would be pretty boring. ROOT Restaurant in New Orleans is a perfect example. Thank you to Michael W. DeVidts, a chef from New Orleans School of Cooking, for recommending that I try ROOT during my current visit to the Big Easy. Tomorrow, I will have a chance to Sous Chef for Michael during one of his ever-popular Cooking Classes. Will share more details a future blog.
During our visit, the Chef at ROOT sent several complimentary amuse bouches, or tasting plates. Didn’t get to meet him in person, so I can’t credit who was cooking that Thursday night. Can tell you that Phillip Lopez is the owner and Executive Chef of ROOT, so we send him our “Thanks”. The first tasting course was this pickled Cauliflower in Cauliflower soup. Cool, clean and refreshing.
Next came one the restaurant’s most popular dishes, Menage a Foie. That’s Foie Gras three ways (Top photo). A very playful dish, the first part is a Foie Gras flavored Confetti, anchored by pine nuts and colorful mixed veggies. Next, there are house-made “Funyons” mixed with rich Pickled Onions. The Star of the plate of course is the Foie Gras Cotton Candy, not too sweet with a smoky sesame-like flavor. This is molecular gastronomy at it best, and tons of fun.
We tried the Korean Style Short Ribs, which are hopefully a work-in-progress. They came out over-seasoned with too much gristle. Were sent back to from whence they came. But then- Hello! We got to encounter the Glazed Pork Belly. Amazingly tender and flavorful- accompanied by a perfect variety of Roasted Vegetables and delicious sauce.
Another amuse bouche arrived with house-made Sorbet, Berry Sauce and a Candied Cucumber on top. An embodiment of refreshment. Though sated, I had to scan the Dessert Menu for something different, lest I miss out on the chance to have a treat that we could never find anywhere else. Think I found it.
The Yorkie came with a house-made Chocolate Covered Cookie, Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream, house-made Coco Puffs. They pour a Minted Milk into the bowl at the table right at serving. I am running out of superlatives for this dish. A truly tasty treat garnished with fresh Mint. A once in a lifetime experience, until we make it back there again. For sure we will- to try ROOT’s ever popular Charcuterie Menu.
ROOT is located at 200 Julia St., near the New Orleans Morial Convention Center. Phone is (504) 252-9480. Website http://www.roootnola.com.
Root Restaurant, New Orleans- http://rootnola.com/
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