Craigie on Main – 8 Course Tasting Menu

The one and only Woo Bear, my favorite NYPD PoPo/Detective/Bodyguard/Bestie came to visit me in Boston and being so busy with work lately we FINALLY got a chance to meet up, rant, chat, laugh and just have a jolly awesome time.  I picked him up from his hotel and even though we got there early they had a table for us already set for us.

Woo Bear & Peep Peep unite!!!!!

AKA

He’s the Gru to my Agnes

I told him we had to go to Craigie on Main.. it’s farm to table and seasonal and just one of my favorite places MUST GO TO EAT AT places in Boston… well it’s in Cambridge but same difference. I adore their open kitchen. And everyone there is SO friendly and awesome. PLUS every time you get the tasting menu you get different and new things it’s NEVER the same.

After careful, not so careful thinking we decided to order the everything 8 course tasting menu.  We started off with a champagne for me and a “manly” scotch drink for him. I think the waitress said it was a scotch rimmed with absinthe?!… I thought it was delicious!!!!

We also ordered a bomb ass bottle of French Burgundy Pinot Noir – mad $$ but soooo worth it

I asked for them to write out the menu for us so I could have it when I went home… obviously so I could blog!!!

And then it began….. as we sipped our yummy drinks, the food started flowing….

Trio of Amuse Bouche

Citrus Cured Striped Bass, Avocado, Red Onion, Pickled Pine Nuts

This was Woo Bear’s favorite… mainly cuz of the avocado he said.  It was good and reminded me of tuna tartare, I think mainly cuz of the color, would’ve never thought it was striped bass – but I guess it was cuz of the citrus cure.  You couldn’t really taste the citrus but it was a good bite.

Razor Clams, Uni Vinaigrette

Texturally wise, this was my favorite of the three. It was obviously clams… and I LOOOOOVE razor clams.. I’ve never had it sliced before and it was amazing.  Need to start taking my razor clams not whole on a shell… hehe…

Smoked Bluefish Rillettes, Hackleback Roe

Taste-wise this was y favorite. It was a beautifully soaked fish… and with the caviar and everything it was pretty divine.

The waitress loved that I had a champagne glass tattooed on me haha..

Sea Trout Pastrami
Winter Chicories, Blood Orange, Pistachio Vinaigrette

I actually expected a smokier tasting salmon, from the looks of it, but the taste was impeccable.  The texture of the salmon was of smoked salmon but it definitely had that “pastrami” kick to it.  With the added crunch of the chicory and pistachio it was heaven in each bite.  It actually would’ve been an amazing salad with more chicory and pistachios but deeeeeelish!!!!!!!

Roasted Sturgeon à la Poêle
Camargue Red Rice, Red Onion Soubise, Beurre Rouge

When the last dish came out we finally finished our first drinks and got to get into the the wine, which paired PERFECTLY, as waitress said it would, with the food… It was salty was soooooo gooooood.  Not sure what the greens were but the rice was just barely el dente and chewy and amazing, I almost thought it was wheat berries…the surgeon [this was the first time Woo Bear ever had it, but I have] was soooo buttery and beautifully cooked.  Like I said, it was salty but it still tasted awesome….

Delicious wine with an amazing friend!!!

Spice-Crusted Striped Bass Kama

Wait. What? KAMA? UM, I LOVE YOU CRAIGIE.   I love Fish Collar Bone [aka Kama]

Even the waitress told me to make sure to take a pic – I think she saw me taking pictures before… and probably assumed since I was asian HAHA

It’s all about this:
the Tuscan Olive Oil, Citrus Vinaigrette

And cuz we were “her friends” she poured it on for us. AWWWWW I felt so loved….!!!! She even said “Of course Tiff, you’re my friend” hahahaha… maybe she remembers me from my past eatings there…. LOLOLOL… I always eat SO much here

This was my piece… Woo Bear and me both picked our pieces CLEAN!!!!!… We ASIAN YO.  We waste NOTHING!!!

House-Made Red Beet Conchiglie Pasta
Boudin Noir Ragoût, Fava Leaves

This was beautiful. Fucking beautiful. BEET PASTA? It’s like taking a veggie I love with a pasta I love and combining the two.  When I first looked at it, I was like UHHH.. meat? blah? WHAT? But it was delicious.   The sauce didn’t overwhelm the beet taste in the pasta and the lava leaves added a nice green freshness to it.   Will definitely try to make a beet pasta in the future… altho I’ll probably make pappardelle or gnocchi.

Slow-Roasted Veal Sweetbreads
Wild Mushrooms, Farm-Fresh Egg, Chorizo Sauce

This may have been my favorite dish of the night, minus the bone marrow later, but I can never not LOVEEEEEEEEEE and orgasm with bone marrow.  But the poached egg was SOOOO beautiful.  The sauce, the mushrooms and of course SWEETBREADS.  I really need to find a place that sells sweetbreads so I can start cooking them.  They’re one of my favorite delicacies.. even more than bone marrow and foie gras cuz I can never find them to cook them myself… and because of that, I ALWAYS ALWAYS have to order sweetbreads when it’s on the menu.. well I guess the same with the other two but still….

And then when we thought it was all over….

Axis Venison Two Ways: Spice-Crusted Leg, Crepinette
Mustard Spaetzle, Hakurei Turnips, Red Cabbage Purée

And obviously we got it with the BONE MARROW!!!!

Can you believe they asked us if we would rather have duck fat roasted carrots OR bone marrow? UMMM… we didn’t even look at each other and Woo Bear and I both screamed BONE MARROW!!!

It was all so freaking delicious….  the crepinette was SOOOOOOOO delicious. It was a yummy venison meatball!!!… and the venison leg, sliced and cooked rare was just SOOO tender and delicious.  I ended up eating the marrow on toast and then the rest of the marrow all over my veal dish and licking it up. The spaetzle was crunchy and divine and while it was from “mustard” it had almost a delicate “cheese” taste to it.  Definitely some of the yummiest spaetzle I’ve had.  The turnips were great.. I thought it was daikon – which I guess is basically a turnip/carrot – and just all of the items combined was ORGASMIC. We had SOOOOOO much bone marrow it could feed a family of 10.

Palate Cleanser
House-made Lime Frozen Yogurt
Basil Seeds

Delicious. Refreshing. YUM.

We got this amazing Bourbon:
Michter’s 20yr Cask Strength Single Barrel 114.2°

At 67$ a glass it better be fucking amazing and it was… smelled like caramel and was soooooo tasty. Yeah disgustingly expensive but also disgustingly delicious.

Dessssert time.. so it was definitely more than just 8 courses….

Moroccan ‘Upside Down’ Carrot Cake
Goat Cheese Sorbet, Dates, Caramelized Almonds

I told them no goat cheese but they gave me some anyways.  I ate it anyways.  But the cake was super dry, even though I loved the look/concept of the cake.  Next time I make carrot cake I’ll have a beautiful slice of carrot on top.  It didn’t go with the goat cheese even tho I tried it together to make it “wetter” and neither did the sauce.  It was kinda sad to see such a fantastic meal end so badly.

Chocolate-Fernet Branca Crémeux
Roasted Lemon Puree, Tarragon Ice Cream

I don’t really think that was what we got… it tasted like mint ice cream on chocolate mousse and crunchy sticks hahahaha…. it was good but didn’t feel like a FULL dessert, like a side to a dessert…

BUT AT LEAST THIS SAVED THE NIGHT

We had a special complimentary Hot Cocoa to warm us up… there was definitely some chilies and cardamum in it <3

Everything was talked about, we definitely spent a good few hours there… and in the end we realized:

Love you Woo Bear. Can’t wait to play again soon!!!!! Miss you dearly already!!!!

P for Pabu & Perfection [Baltimore, MD]

PABU.

SAll I can say is that I have heard so so so SO much about this place. And I am a HUGE Japanese / Sushi fan. I’ve eaten a LOT of it. EVERYWHERE.

Literally. EVERYWHERE.

Definitely lives up to the hype. I suggest you take a trip to Baltimore specifically to eat here. Make sure you have a big empty tummy ready to fill up.  If needed, walk around the aquarium first.

[Note that it’s day time and bright out… we ended up skipping our original train ticket to eat more and go home later!]

I’m ready to rock and roll… [WOK and roll HAHAHA get it? Yeah I know bad joke, but AT LEAST I’m laughing!!!!]

Look familiar? Apparently they donate 1$ to breast cancer research everytime someone orders this. YAY

It’s called the Maiko Onee and contained hakutake sochu, pamplemousse rose, and yuzu. YUMMMMMM…

And before we knew what we were getting ourselves into, a little plate of small bites arrived. DELISH

Happy Spoons [oysters, caviar, mine had uni and lots of happiness], eel rilette, miso- carrot/burdock, ohitashi [the spinach], lotus root and tiny tiny white fishies.. I forgot what they’re called but so tender and yummy

SUCHHHH a palette opener. SO delicious. I could’ve used another plate. Haha. Sharing is hard when food is this good.

Good thing next course W and I both had our own bowls of sashimi.  AMAAAAAZING.

There was this one fish, seared… you eat with ginger and scallions. OMFG. Amazing. This was the most amazing fresh delicious creamy sashimi EVAAA

And suddenly we got free sake

Next came the most beautiful creamy custard-y soft homemade tofu. SOOO much better than the other day.

Some nori, scallion, mushrooms, japanese yam and OMG the tofu…….

Seeng this guy at work knew… yakitori was in the works

Foie Gras Pops wrapped in Nori.

HOLY FUCKING HELL. SOOO GOOD.  I love my foie. This was amaze balls.

At this point I was about to burst.  So I ordered some hot tea to help wash it down…

But I’m a trooper, so off I go go go

I’m pretty sure there were more nigiri… but.. just relooking at all of these makes me full again hahaha… we ended with this.  “Just one more… just one more…”

And it was simple and delicious.

But of course there is always ALWAYS room for desserts.

Gingerbread amazement. MIND BLOWING.

Dessert

No words just perfection. Go. Now.

Another night at Eastern Standard…

“What you wanna do? xxx or Eastern Standard or xxx”

Eastern Standard?”

“Hehehe I already got resos there..”

“Let’s just go casual…. bar at Eastern Standard?”

“Let’s do it!”

We ended up at the Hawthrone Bar having some delicious cocktails and bubbly… a great convo with the owner and bartender… LOVE LOVE LOVE.

Island Creek Oysters

Amazing as usual. ALWAYS.

Frisee Aux Lardons

Hazelnuts, Sweetbreads, Poached Egg

SOOOO sexy

Delicious and only thing I pretty must inhaled the whole night.  Runny egg. Sweetbreads. Hazelnuts.  Bacon. Frisee. How can this be wrong at ALL?! *JOY*

Steak Tartare

Cornichons, Baquette

According to W a TOTAL “Cougar Food” And while yes yes yes I loveeeeee tartare, as you all REALLY WELL KNOW… this was meh. Still can’t help but giggle about how it’s a “Cougar” food… :]

Frites

Yummy as usual :]  Altho W told me that it was some sort of fries that all the restaurants get… boo way to be a Chef and blow the cover, yummy nonetheless :] NOM

Pan Seared Hudson Valley Foie Gras
Caramelized Pear, Pomegranate

HUUUUUUGE sexy lobe of Foie Gras on yummy toasted fluffy toasted brioche!!!  It was good until it got cold… delicious nonetheless.. still love the stuff, it was HUUUUGE tho

All W wanted [yep my fatass wanted everything else]:

Linguine & Clams

Oregano, Chili Flake, Parmesan

I had some, it was great. Smallest portion of Pasta I’ve ever seen in Boston, no seriously, but good :] MMM creamy with a hint of heat! I love carbs!!!

Daily Offal: Duck Heart & Leg Cassoulet

W isn’t a fan of hearts or beans so I took a nibble. Def a heart.  Took a bite of the beans.  Not a fan. Sigh.  But the chef gave it to us complimentary – totally awesome of them :] Way for W to throw the “I’m in the business line” :] TEE-HEE…

And like I said, we ended the night just a short distance down the block at Hawthrone for drinks and chit chat… and I just HAD to take this pic

Little baby hand with fake tattoos in big hand with real tattoos..

TEE HEE