Sunday, October 6, 2013

Millennium Restaurant & Some New Vocabulary {Tasting}

I was very proud of one of my best friends this weekend. He's a self-described germaphobe, who not only reached into a garbage can during our Urban Spy Adventure (Click to read about that: here.) but he actually didn't mind. And the evening before that mandatory fun, I took Mr. No-Meat-No-Meal - along with his wife and my husband - to a vegan restaurant. Brian actually raved about the food! Major food coup.

We dropped the kiddos off with grandparents and friends after work on Friday and headed up to San Francisco. After checking in to our hotel, we walked down to Hotel California's Millennium Restaurant for a late night meal.

Here's what we ate...

Zucchini and Carrot Pappardelle (raw)
oil-cured black olives, fennel & sage marinated mushrooms, cheddar cauliflower, sweet pepper-cashew puree, macadamia nut crumble, basil & fresh herbs

Crusted King Trumpet Mushrooms
Arborio rice & sesame dredge, cabbage & carrot salad with line vinaigrette, green tea togarashi, sweet & spicy ginger-chile jam

Black Bean Sopes
Crisp corn masa medallions, smoked black bean puree, caramelized plantains, avocado & roasted tomatillo salsa, pumpkin seed-habanero sauce, cilantro & epazote cashew cream, grapefruit-radish salad

Cinnamon-Scented Volcano Rice Cake
Miso-glazed eggplant, Chinese broccoli, yuba, shitake mushrooms, lemongrass tofu, star anise carrot-ginger phô broth, spicy Asian pear, chile relish, Thai basil & shisho, sprout salad

Arborio & Pistachio Crusted Eggplant Napoleon
tomato & leek tagine with roasted eggplant, zucchini, butter beans & artichoke, tofu-sage cheese, Israeli couscous, cardamom-chile zhug, radiccio & frisee salad

Vanilla Bean Tamarind Crème Brûlée with dots of tamarind syrup, honeydew melon soup, and fresh passionfruit

...and this one never leaves the menu: Chocolate Almond Midnight!
almond cashew crust, mocha chocolate filling, raspberry sauce, white chocolate mousse

Millennium Restaurant is dedicated to supporting the essential earthly concepts of organic food production, small farms, sustainable agriculture, recycling and composting. They cook with fresh produce delivered everyday, and choose organic whenever possible. They believe that a gourmet dining experience can be created out of vegetarian, healthy, and environmentally friendly foods. They are proudly completely free of genetically modified foods. So, they are socially, environmentally-fabulous as well as delicious.

I did learn some new foodie vocabulary from this meal...

togarashiThis blend of spices is used throughout Japan as a table condiment, occupying much the same place that salt and pepper do in the American household. It most likely contains Chinese chile, orange peel, seaweed, ginger, poppy seeds, and sesame seeds.

epazoteThis is used as a leaf vegetable. Raw, it has a medicinal pungency, similar to anise, fennel, or tarragon, except stronger. It is often used to season quesadillas and sopes

zhug: This is a Middle Eastern hot sauce, originating in Yemeni cuisine and brought to Israel by Yemenite Jews; it is now a staple of Israeli cuisine and made from fresh hot peppers and seasoned with coriander, garlic and various spices.

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