The French Laundry

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Finally made my way to French Laundry!  As the mecca of most foodies, I can't believe I've never eaten here (mostly due to a difficulty in getting reservations).  Now I can officially say I've eaten at all of the Thomas Keller establishments!   

As with Per Se, French Laundry starts off the tasting menu with Thomas Keller's ever so famous salmon cornets.  Smoked salmon with creme fraiche inside a crispy cone is the perfect way to start off the meal.  The only downside is they only give you one, so you must savor it!  One is never enough...
Another famous amuse bouche is the bite size Gougères, which is Gruyère cheese puff.  Again, they only give one per person, but its so delicious it will make you yearn for more.

Royal Ossetra Caviar (supplemental course) - buckwheat blini, Scottish Sea trout "tartare", flowering watercress, Kendall Farms Creme Fraiche and Hen Egg emulsion.  Loved the transition from the savory amuse bouche to this first course. 

"Oysters and Pearls" - "sabayon"of pearl tapioca with Island Creek Oysters and WHite Sturgeon Caviar.  As with most tasting menus, French Laundry changes its courses quite frequently.  Fun Fact - this is one of the dishes that is a constant on their tasting menu.  Luscious and luxurious is the only way to describe this course. 

Two butter options for the breads are provided.  This beehive shaped butter was the salted butter option.  Creamy and sinfully salty.

This was the unsalted butter option.  Surprisingly, I preferred this butter.  Even though it wasn't salted, I found the flavor to be richer and creamier.

Many people may put a lot of importance on the courses of tasting menus, but I find the bread selections to be just as important and exciting.  Brioche as always was delicious and fluffy.

"Carnaroli risotto biologico" (supplement) - "Castelmagno" Mousse, "Beurre Noisette"and Shaved White Truffles from AlbaIn all the excitement of eating at French Laundry, I had totally forgotten that it was truffle season.  Only did I realize this double bonus after reading the menu.  This definitely wasn't my first time having a white truffle risotto, but the combination is always heavenly.  Of course, the white truffle is shaved tableside.  I absolutely love the smell of white truffles. 

Salad of compressed Jacobsen Orchard Persimmons - Hearts of Peach Palm, "Bavarvis", Pearson Farms Pecans, and Black Winter Truffles "Coulis". 

Another bread session - pretzel bread and French bread.

Atlantic Cod "Confit a la Minute"- Applewood - Smoked Bacon, David Little Potatoes, Mustard Greens and Preserved Horseradish.  From this picture, the potato looks just like a potato chip, but its actually made up of thin slices of potatoes made into a rosette.

Alaskan King Crab "Piccata" - "Choucroute", Compressed Schmitt Farm Apples and Spanish Caper Cream.

Liberty Farm Pekin Duck - Garden broccoli, Globe Artichoke, Navel Orange Confit and "Sauce Bigarade".  The duck was wonderfully cooked with a thin layer of delicious fat and the skin was crisp and it did remind me a bit of Peking duck.

Charcoal - Grilled Japanese Wagyu (supplement)- Sesame Seed "Pain Perdu", Hearts of Romaine Lettuce, Cipollini Onions, San Marzano Tomato Compote and "Steak Sauce".  I didn't realize this until after eating all the components together, but it tasted like a deconstructed hamburger.

Herb Roasted Elysian Field Farm Lamb - Black Trumpet Mushrooms, Garden Sunchokes, Toasted Sunflower Seeds and "Ancholade".

Andante Dairy "Legato"- Garden Fennel Bulb, Green Grape Relish, Cilantro Shoots and Toasted Oat Granola.

Citrus jam topped with a black pepper cookie.

Salted caramel ice cream and graham cracker crumble.

Chocolate mousse cake.
Ginger cheesecake topped with white chocolate.
Salted caramel and brown sugar chocolates.
Graham cracker and marshmallow, peanut butter and jelly chocolates.

Red velvet and green tea macaroons.

Roasted Macadamia nuts with chocolate rolled in powdered sugar.
"coffee and doughnuts" - Espresso mousse with fluffy, sugar dusted donuts.
The parting gift was a tin box of shortbread cookies.  Shortbread cookies don't usually excite me, but these were buttery and delicious.

Address:                  The French Laundry
                                 6640 Washington St.
                                 Yountville, CA
Type:                        French/American

Popular chomps:      tasting menu

Chomp worthy:        tasting menu   

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