I love a good ol’ fashioned multi-course wine dinner — a sloppy celebration of excess and indulgence, when you know the next morning’s going to be hell and still you willing submit.
Last week I collaborated with a friend – an accomplished cook in his own right – to create a five-course springtime feast (seven if you count the Manhattans, and I do, and the bonus bread course). It was the first week of March, so the market wasn’t exactly bursting with spring’s bounty. But it was 72 degrees the day we went shopping, which allowed me to continue denying the existence of winter. Suprisingly, we did find some nice red and black radishes, English peas, asparagus, blood oranges, and spinach (all likely cultivated in Mexico).
I fully intended to take photos of each course as it was presented, but I’m an unreliable drunk (thus the title of this feature). So you get one decent photo of beet salad and one of me in action — a dark, blurry image offering a fairly representative illustration of the evening’s merriment.
One of our hosts called the meal “masterful — a symphony of flavors and textures.” And that was stated in the sober light of the next day. So it had to be good, right?
- Maker’s Mark Manhattans (listen to our first podcast to hear how one does NOT make a proper Manhattan)
- Brown-butter radishes with kumquats, jalapeno, radish greens, and pickled red onion
- Fresh fettuccine with English peas, asparagus, zucchini, mint, lemon, and ricotta salata
- Roasted beets with tangerine, fennel, walnuts, capricho de cabra cheese of goat, and champagne-shallot vinaigrette
- Farm to Market ciabatta with butter (Bonus Course! Why?…Why not?)
- Almond-crusted Dover sole with spinach-parsley puree, Castelvetrano olives, and blood orange
- Strawberry-kiwi pavlova