November 10, 2015

No Fish (at) School

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It's been a while since No Fish and I caught up over a meal, and as usual, she was looking for a new restaurant to hit.  Knowing that I'm a big fan of David Lai's, she suggested and booked Fish School about a month ago.

By this time, of course, I have already made my first visit to Fish School and tried a few dishes... so I was looking forward to trying some new stuff tonight.  Unfortunately, we were seated in the one table in the entire restaurant with the least amount of light... so my pictures of the dishes turned out to be terrible.

Cuttlefish tagliatelle / shrimp paste / ficoide leaves - ah yes... cuttlefish noodles is definitely a trendy dish these days.  I love the texture of these long strands... which came soaking in a pool of fish sauce.  Adding some of the shrimp paste smeared on the side of the bowl gave it even more umami.  The crunchy ficoïde glaciale is always fun to eat.

Salted garoupa / clams / potato brandade - this was very good... Loved the slightly chewy texture of the garoupa chunks after salting.  The clams were good, and the potato brandade was as I would want it.  But the best part was the deep-fried garoupa skin... so yummy!

Heirloom vegetables and herbs garden "gargouillou" - David decided that we should have some greens and eat our veggies, so we got a plate of this.

Yellow croaker - when we first sat down, David came over and told me about the yellow croaker.  When David take the trouble to tell me about a particular dish, I know better than to ignore his hints... because it usually represents the most special item he's got in the kitchen.  This 1-catty-plus yellow croaker - my favorite fish since childhood - was first butterflied, then salted for a little bit, pan-fried to get that crispy skin, then slowly steamed.

The result was delicious.  Once again the texture turned a little chewy thanks to the salting process, but that only brought out the flavors of the flesh itself.  I took out an entire side and put it on No Fish's plate, joking with her that she can tell people that she had fish fillet for dinner...


Potatoes - surprisingly, these were the first potatoes from David that I thought failed.  Way too dry and hard.

I was very, very full after the yellow croaker... so I was just gonna share one dessert with No Fish.  But David had other ideas and decided to send us two more...

Mango / burnt coconut ice cream / coffee - hands down the best dessert we tried out of the four at my last meal.  Still very, very good with all that coffee, mango, and coconut.  No Fish was right: the burnt coconut definitely tasted like those coconut candies we used to eat as kids...

Strawberry / crème fraîche ice cream / rose - the ice cream tasted like crème fraîche or yogurt for sure, and the subtle flavors of rose petals were pretty nice.

Lemon custard / almond / coriander - still just OK, but at least it's refreshing and light.

A pretty happy meal, but I still hate the music and noise level here.  When I have to lean almost halfway across the table just to have a conversation with my friend, I no longer feel I'm in a restaurant.  How I long for that remote in the movie Click... so I could turn the volume down a few notches.

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