Top Chef Masters on Bravo, but I know him from his PBS show Secrets of a Chef. I used to watch him before we got Dish Network in NY. If I had my wits about me, I would have said something along the lines of "I'm a big fan of your PBS show," but all I could say was "Thank you so much," and "Yes, it is very nice weather outside" when the lady was pulling my coat from the check. Okay, let me start from the beginning. When we first got there we were about an hour early because traffic moved really well (we were late for our House of Prime Rib reservation last time so we started really early). When we got in there they had our table ready, but we decided to sit at the bar for a little bit and have a glass of champagne. Even the drink menus were fancy. Nick thought that they might have been covered with ostrich skin or something. Anyway, we tried a champagne from the Russian River area. It was a nice bubbly pink color. After that, they seated us and like the bozo that I am, I went to the wrong chair. The hostess took us to the table, walked around, and pulled out the chair. Where did I go? To the closest chair and pulled it out myself. She had to run around the table to pull my chair out for me. This is where Napoleon Dynamite would say "Idiot". I think I should have brushed up on my etiquette before going, but I didn't realize it was that fancy. They even laid your napkins on your lap for you and gave you new silverware for every course. Let me just say, I frequent Kevin's Noodle House for pho almost every weekend where giant bowls of soup are $7 and I blow my nose at the table because it's so spicy. I'm not exactly what you'd call classy, but I tried my best at FDL. I even used my inside voice, which doesn't happen often. Once we were settled, Nick got up to go to the bathroom, where the waiters actually walk you all the way there so you know where you're going. While he was gone, I heard the matradee say that "Mr. Keller" would be coming into the restaurant in 10 minutes. I nearly pooped myself with glee. We were sitting near a doorway so I shifted Nick's chair closer to me so that he could get a glimpse of him when he came in. While we were waiting to see him they brought out these cute mini martini glasses of cold asparagus soup and a crab meat mixture on a Chinese soup spoon. It was very yummy. Then, to our great happiness, Hubert Keller quickly ducked into our little dining area and headed back to the kitchen in his whites. Nick said that my mouth was hanging open for the two seconds that he was in the room. Oh, we were ecstatic. That made our night, or so we thought.
For dinner we ordered the four course meal which consisted of an appetizer, seafood, meat, and dessert or cheese platter. Nick had the appetizer sampler that had chicken sausage, watermelon with cucumber gelee topped with caviar, and mini fois gras burger. For his seafood he had the sunflower crusted sea bass over pickled radicchio, and "french toast" topped with mushrooms. His meat dish was the braised wagyu beef cheeks coated in mustard pretzels with an Anchor Steam reduction spatzel, and side of creamed sauerkraut. For dessert he got the espresso platter that came with an array of different chocolate delights. My dinner consisted of a Maryland softshell crab with a scallop and sea urchin sauce and little pieces of soft bread. (My memory isn't as great as Nick's and the crab isn't on the menu that they have on the website. The rest I've copied from the website.) For my seafood selection I had the Maine scallops with toasted pine nuts, sliced potato marbles, sun-dried tomatoes, olive sauce and Banyuls reduction. For the meat course I had the "duo of Colorado lamb and lamb shank 'tagine'" with eggplant confit, golden raisins, pine nuts, pearl couscous, and Tunisian spices and harissa. My dessert choice was the cheese platter. Oh, how I love cheese. They were all really good except the blue. I'm not a big fan of blue cheese, but I did try it. It's a little too strong for me, but I did manage to gobble the rest of it up. At the end of the meal they also brought us out an awesome strawberry mousse since it was for Nick's graduation and a complimentary tiny dessert plate. Since we both enjoy food we were tasting each others dishes and pretty much feeding each other. I think we may have disgusted the couple across from us with our lovey-doveiness. I did notice that the lady tried to be more coupley with her hubby (I assume hubby) by touching his arm and leaning into him during dessert more. (They weren't touching at all during their dinner and there was a significant amount of time between courses.) Heheh maybe we inspired them to be more affectionate. Who knows.
At the end of the night I got up to go to the bathroom before we left. While I was in there, Hubert Keller walked out. Nick was thinking, oh she's going to be upset she missed him. When I came back out I was like quick, lets see if we can get glimpse! Lo and behold, he was standing the lobby saying good bye to his guests. Oohhh that was soooo awesome. Nick and I were literally giggling like school girls on our drive home. Nick pointed out that he had surprisingly soft hands for a head chef. We suspect that since he has like four different restaurants that he just overseas most of the what happens in the kitchen. Ah, what a night. It was just so awesome shaking his hand since I said to Nick more than once, "Do you think he touched our food?...or our plates?".
Next up is a full week. Tomorrow is Christopher's graduation, Nick's graduation on Saturday, Christopher's grad bbq on Sunday, Shanna comes home Tuesday, and then lots of packing before we go down to LA next Saturday and then the cruise Sunday! It's going to be hectic, but at least the time will pass quickly.