Hello Kitty's birthday is coming up, and I asked her to choose the venue for her birthday dinner. To my delight, she chose to go to Amber for the occasion. I have not been back to visit Richard for a while and had been meaning to find an opportunity to do so, therefore I quickly agreed to Hello Kitty's request while secretly yelling "YES!" in my head...
I hastily fired off an email to Richard in the middle of the night, hours before flying out on vacation, asking him to secure me a table while apologizing for not going through the proper channels (of booking with the restaurant directly). I did mentioned that it would be to celebrate Hello Kitty's birthday...
So a couple of days ago I was trading messages with Richard, and he mentioned that they had started to serve their game menu. I, of course, responded with an enthusiastic "YES" when he asked whether he should reserve a couple of portions of this limited offering for us. While we all love Richard for his creative / fancy/ refined cuisine with the finest seafood and vegetables, the game dishes I tasted at Amber last year were truly amazing.
No sooner had we sat down than Sommelier John Chan came over to offer a complimentary glass of bubbly from Richard. The Alfred Gratien Cuvée Brut Classique showed nice acidity, which was balanced with ripeness.
Virgin Bloody Mary - tomato and Tabasco on a Parmesan crust. A little salty.
the caviar dish from Hertog Jan, which was even prettier thanks to its bright colors. The pheasant was indeed very smoky and a little salty, and together with the salty flavors of the caviar were counter-balanced by the sweetness of the sea urchin. There was a layer of foie gras cream at the bottom of the bowl, and lots of umami coming from the mushrooms. Wonderful mix of flavors and textures.
But what really made my eyes open were the little mirabelles from Alsace. These were simply incredibly ripe and sweet after being a little caramelized. So much so that they deserved their own little shout out on FB.
Served with little sticks of celeriac and celeriac purée , along with slices of quince and red meat apple.
The dish was accented with the addition of grated citrus peel, and the tonka beans gave it a whole exotic dimension.