December 21, 2021

Two nights with Sato: more golden eye

Pin It

Two days after my last visit, I'm back at Ta Vie 旅 - this time with the Compatriot and My Favorite Cousin in tow. The Compatriot last came to visit Sato-san some 15 months ago, and he was only too happy to return. It so happens that Winter Solstice falls on today, so it's also appropriate that we spend some time gathering with family.

As promised, Sato-san prepared a menu that is reasonably different from the one I had two nights ago, so I'm pretty happy.

As always, we start with the signature nukazuke (糠漬け) bread.

Lobster and Japanese turnip warm salad, turnip leaf oil, Stilton sauce, fresh apple
- one of the few dishes that's a repeat from 2 nights ago, but I didn't mind one bit. Still loving the strong punch from the Stilton, which gets softened by the acidity from the apple. Of course, the lobster is always delicate and beautiful.

Japanese pumpkin soup with hazelnut milk foam shaved with white truffle - we could smell the white truffle fragrance when this was being served a few tables away, and had been eagerly awaiting our turn. A fake piece of "truffle" - made with hazelnut powder, hazelnut oil, and maple syrup - was dropped into the soup before the real white truffle was shaved on top. Very nice and warms the stomach.

House made pasta with "aonori" seaweed sauce topped with Hokkaido fresh uni - Sato-san prepared this for the Compatriot as he knows it's a favorite... but surely he remembers that it's also my favorite, too? I absolutely LOOOOVE the flavors from aonori (青海苔).

I hadn't heard about the devastation inflicted on the sea urchin and salmon population up near Hokkaido, which occurred around 2 months ago due to red tide. So apparently the prices have gone up... but I feel sorry for the people who make their living from the trade.

Caramelized terrine de foie gras, with chestnuts - the foie gras terrine was, of course, tasty as one would expect. We've also got roasted parsnip, chestnuts, walnuts, and the "snow" made of shaved chestnuts. Drool...

Charcoal grilled kinmedai "金目鯛" from 下田 with crispy scales - hello my golden-eyed fishy, we meet again. The scales were still crunchy and slightly smoky, the flesh still tender and succulent. And the Shimonita leek (下仁田ネギ) was still very, very delicious.

Charcoal grilled pigeon from Bresse, France with grilled avocado, shiitake mushroom - Bresse pigeon is always a good idea, and the execution here is always flawless. Very yum.

Roselle tea

"Charlotte aux poires": "Le Lectier" Japanese fresh pear, with fromage blanc mousse, scent of bergamot, ginger - very happy to see Le Lectier (ル レクチエ) again. Still can't get over that sauce with bergamot, pear, and ginger. Sooooo delicious.

"Fraisier" Japanese strawberry with mousseline cream - what a pretty cake! And perfect for Christmas. So classic with the strawberries, mousseline, and genoise sponge.

I think Sato-san has decided to join the club of chefs who enjoys giving me gold foil...

I decided to go back to my favorite herbal tea so that I could try a different petit four.

Pandan panna cotta - of course this paired well with the herbal tea, whose main ingredient is pandan leaves.

We brought a few bottles for the evening...

2009 Hospices de Beaune Corton-Vergennes Cuvée Paul Chanson, mis en bouteille par Lucien Le Moine pour El Bulli - big nose of toast, with beautiful grilled corn, very flinty. Rounded on the attack but still with good acidity. Getting grippy on the palate starting mid-palate to finish. About 2 hours after opening this was so, so buttery and beautiful.

1961 Pichon Baron - served 15 minutes after opening. Tons of smoke and grilled meats, minty with a little bit of stewed prunes underneath. Still lively and going strong. After 5-10 minutes in glass started to show tea leaves and soy sauce on the nose, farmy and savory on the palate around 30 minutes after opening. Palate got softer about an hour after opening, and actually grippy tannins on the palate another 15 minutes later. Drinking very well.

2001 DRC Richebourg - served about 1 hour and 15 minutes after opening. Soooo fragrant and floral, sweet fruit on the nose but not much sweetness on the palate, with a bit of acidity. A little stemmy after 15 minutes in glass, and almost a hint of burnt rubber perhaps. With a new pour more than 2 hours after opening, more sweet fruit emerged. Beautiful wine.

The Compatriot was very happy, and in fact so was everyone else. Many thanks to Sato-san, Takano-san, and the team. We'll be back.

1 comment:

Markus Schmidt said...

what a line up of wines, especialy the last one ...... happy new year! Too bad quarantine requirements in HK have prevented me/us and will likely prevent me/us from returning to HK anytime soon.


Related Posts with Thumbnails

TripAdvisor Travel Map