September 27, 2010

Eine kleine feinschmecker elfen

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Tonight's dinner was two months in the making - literally.  I first sent out an invitation at the end of July, wishing to meet up with a couple of the city's foodies whose palate I have come to trust.  After 2 months and 2 venue changes - one of which was this afternoon - the meeting finally took place.

I first met Gourmet KC at a dinner last year, and I was immediately awed by his wealth of experience.  Here was a guy who really knew his food, and not just some schmuck who was full of himself and posted random comments on the web.  I also got to know Little Meg through the web, but somehow had never managed to meet up with her.

We finally ended up at Hakata Ichome (博多一丁目), a Japanese grilled meat joint whose specialty seemed to be offal (ホルモン).  This was of course right up my alley, and I was jumping for joy when KC suggested it as our final venue.  Not that I wouldn't have appreciated the other Cantonese restaurants... but this was sooooo much more interesting!

Of course, we must not forget Lady Elf, who - unfortunately - was relegated to her customary duties of sweating over the grill so that the rest of us could eat well.  Truth be told, ever since my first yakiniku experience with the elves I haven't been able to bring myself to help with grilling meat at dinner.  They just do such an awesome job it puts my pitiful efforts to shame.  My sincere gratitude to the unsung hero under the Michelin star...

I don't normally drink whisky with my meals, but KC brought a bottle of Nikka Whisky from the Barrel... I knew it'd be a bottle of brown...  He felt it would be the perfect drink for our meal, and who am I to argue with him?  This little blend - weighing in above 50% alcohol - was pretty nice straight in the glass, but also good with a single cube of ice.  My face was turning red before long...

We were here for ホルモン, so naturally ordered up the mixed platters and various offal.  The big intestines were chewy and crunchy, full of fatty goodness that only served to fan the flames of the grill. 

The small intestines practically oozed fat as they were being grilled... Heart, honeycomb and manyplies tripe, and other interesting parts were all pretty good.  The beef combination platter - with tongue - was tasty enough. 

The thin slices of oxtail didn't work so well for me. 

The intestine hotpot was interestingly spicy, with plenty of chopped chili peppers.  Good enough to have seconds and thirds.

I brought along one of my bottles of Bijofu Yuzu Liqueur (美丈夫ゆずリキュール) since Little Meg seemed really interested in it.  Maybe it was the smokiness of the place, but the nose didn't seem as explosive as I remembered.  Or maybe it was the fact that I was already buzzing from the Nikka... anyway my olfactory functions weren't exactly 100% tonight...

Food was nothing fancy, but very tasty - due in no small part to the skills of Lady Elf.  Of course the company tonight was sensational, as it's always fun to spend time with knowledgeable and fun foodies.  I hope we can catch up again soon.


KC said...

Hey Peech,

So much to learn last night! And thanks for the Yuzu Liqueur as well.


Susan said...

Peter, I'm salivating as I read this!


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