Wednesday, May 9, 2012

J'ai mange Paris

I got back from Paris in the beginning of February, and haven't been able to post any pictures yet of the things I have eaten and the sights that I saw.  We have been busy at Meat & Potatoes, with Lent and Easter.. and I have not had any time to blog.. so I apologize for the long wait.. but here it is..

Right before we left for Paris, we saw the Travel Channel's 100th episode of "No Reservations" and decided that we should probably take Anthony Bourdain's advice and go to a few of the places he went to.  For a complete travel guide of the places he went you can see them here.

Paris.... The food...

We had some amazing food.  The food was different in Paris than in the states.  It was simple, refined and basically all about the ingredients.  Every single place we went to was unique on its own, especially with the attention to the simple things, but I will start from the beginning, and tell you all of the places worth eating..

Guy Savoy:

When we walked in, we were not only greeted by the hostess, host, sommelier and MatreD, but Guy Savoy himself.  It was very rewarding to be greeted by a well-known Michelin Star Chef.  I was very excited about my first meal in Paris, and it was very good.  It was small portioned, as I figured, but delicious.   This was the first time this trip that I ate the Parisian bread.  It was so crusty on the outside, and since they add the wheat germ back into the bread, it had a very distinct flavor.

Le Comptoir du Relais & L'Avant Comptoir:

Located in busy Saint-Germain, this is a spot that you don't want to miss.  They do NOT take reservations, so we waited outside for a table inside at about 12:00 in the cold.   After seeing a very large line form, we finally got in around 12:30 for lunch and had a very delicious meal for a really great price.  We went back a few times to eat and actually ate outside in the cold because we liked it so much.  Everything that I ate there was delicious, especially the Pig's Feet, which they were known for at Le Comptoir du Relais.

L'Avant Comptoir, which means "Before le comptoir" was a little deli-like place which had different small plates and crepes.  I had a glass of great french wine, beef carpaccio and a small little "boeuf"  sandwich, which was one of my favorite things of the entire trip.  The people that worked in this small deli were extra helpful with giving me other places to go, and took a lot of time drinking wine with me.

Across the street from these wonderful restaurants is a liquor store known for their barrel-aging of different spirits and cocktails.   The store, called "Le Maison Du Whisky"   is literally a house of different whiskies, bourbons and scotches, along with some very hard to find spirits.  When you walk in, you are immediately put into a table of"barrel-aged" cocktails, like we do at Meat & Potatoes.  There were Negoni, Manhattan, and Martinez cocktails in barrels that you can buy.  You can also sample these and other spirits in their upstairs room.   We bought a nice selection of different things that you will see at Meat & Potatoes, including Monkey 47 Gin, Nikka Japanese Whisky, and of course Pappy Van Winkle & Old Rip Van Winkle.

L'Atelier de Joel Robochon

L'Atelier de Joel Robochon is just one of those places that we had to go to in Paris.  I have been to the one in New York City, and I knew the one in Paris would be similar, but also much better.  What is fantastic about L'Atelier is that you can see everything going on behind the scenes, because the kitchen is open.

Le Cinq

Located in the extravagant Four Seasons "George V" hotel, Le Cinq is one of those places that you visit once in your lifetime.  The service is impeccable, the food is extremely elegant, and the decor is just beautiful.  It is "fancy" French dining to the fullest.

Pierre Gagnaire - We had lunch at Pierre Gagnaire, and wished that we would have had dinner there as well.  We met Chef Gagnaire while dining, and much compliments to the chef.  His food was incredible.  I highly suggest going there.

Le Chateaubriand -  Inaki Aizpitarte, the chef and owner of Le Chateaubriand and Le Dauphin (which is right next store) happened to be there the night we went to eat.  After a certain hour, they take first come first serve diners.  As we waited for the time to head over, Le Dauphin was serving us lots of Rose wine.  We did not eat at Le Dauphin, but the food we saw looked incredible.  In Le Dauphin, the entire room was covered in marble, floor to ceiling, which was definitely a sight to see.

Les Bistronomes - this new Paris restaurant was recommended to us by the concierge at our hotel.  He said this was a "fusion" of French Bistro & Gastronomy.  We really enjoyed this meal, especially the pork (pate thing with bread) that was served to us when we first arrived.

Au Pied De Cochon  - This was not the Au Pied De Cochon that we all love in Montreal.  This was similar to the American version of Denny's and Eat'n Park.  It was open around the clock, in Paris they call this "non-stop 7/7," and it was one of those places that we went after a long night at the Cocktail Clubs.

Le Relais de l'Entrecote - Traditional "Steak and Frites" in Paris, this place you must go to.  It was as busy as any cafe in Paris, and not only with tourists.  This place literally only serves Steak and Frites, and the sauce they pour over your steak is just incredible.  It is a great and affordable place to go, grab a reasonable bottle of Cote de Rhone, and enjoy your company.  You will leave feeling completely satisfied wondering, "What is IN that sauce??"

Poilane Boulangerie - My favorite bread in Paris!

 ...The Drinks....

Candelaria -  After a long haul up and down the freezing Parisian streets, we finally found this little Taqueria that held the exact same address as the "cool speakeasy-type bar" we are accustomed to in the US.  When we walked in, our friends said, "Is this really it?,"  because there was no sight of a cool bar.  I then led them through the back door, which opened into a dark basement-looking bar.  It was dark, and it smelled of bitters throughout the entire place.  This is my favorite part about the hidden bars in the US.  We sipped on some pretty exciting drinks - one of which consisted of St. Germain (very popular in Paris)

Prescription Cocktail Club - This was by far our favorite place to go.  We ended up here twice because after we met the mixologists the first time, we made friends and had to go back to see them.  This was a two story speakeasy bar, and really hip to a younger clientele in Paris.  I made sure that I took note of some of the different techniques that the French bartenders used to bring back to our bartenders at Meat & Potatoes.

Curio Parlor - Not only did we have our first Paris poured Absinthe here, but we also had the Japanese Whisky called Nikka.  You cannot really find this outside of Japan.... well except for at Meat & Potatoes.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Been Busy!

Hey Guys-

I've been so busy the last month between Christmas and New Year's.... and then add on Pittsburgh Restaurant Week, Beer & Whiskey Dinners, Lent, and Valentine's Day.  If that isn't enough, I am traveling to Paris on February 1 for vacation.   I have never been to Paris for vacation, although I did study there learning to  make different breads a while back.   We are staying at the Renaissance Hotel near the Arc De Triumph.  I have been doing some research, and I want to go to Frenchie, Le Chateaubriand, and a few other great restaurants.  Any suggestions on where I should eat or shop?  Also any other Parisian secrets?

Looking to February, I have the Lenten Fish Fry's underway.  We are going to be open for lunch on Fridays only during lent, so make sure you stop by.

I hope everyone enjoyed Pittsburgh Restaurant Week, and is looking forward to the upcoming months!  Don't forget to vote for us on on the ballot for Best New Restaurant!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Sally In San Francisco

We headed to San Francisco for the Steeler Game this weekend, hoping for a big win for them.  We ran into Sally Wiggin, the newscaster from WTAE at a Steeler bar called Giordano Bros, similar to a Primanti Bros. here in Pittsburgh.   They filmed a short video of her at the bar, with Tolga in the background.  Check it out here.  

While in San Francisco, we ate at Incanto, a nose to tail restaurant, hoping to meet Chris Cosentino, a well-known chef on the Food Network and in San Francisco. Pictures will be up soon.

Looking forward to New Year's Eve at Meat & Potatoes, call us for reservations!  412-325-7007.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Pittsburgh Magazine Review

For a great article to read about Meat and Potatoes, check out Pittsburgh Magazine. The restaurant was just written about in the December 2011 issue for our modern-day "Pittsburgh Speakeasy and Gastropub." From this article, you can see the picture of our Bone Marrow, Devils on Horseback, Pate, and others. It also shows our "cow diagram."

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone! We spent our holiday in NYC this past week, eating and researching. Come back next week for a great post and pictures!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Celebrities at Meat & Potatoes

We have been getting some celebs in Meat & Potatoes, but we normally do not talk a lot about it. We have had Tom Cruise (BTW our favorite Tom Cruise skit is the dance scene from Tropic Thunder) with wife Katie Holmes, and the band Anthrax, along with a lot of other people from Los Angelos, have been visiting in the past few weeks. How great is it to get a few icons in here to enjoy our food? What do you all think we can do to get more?

We went to the Anthrax concert - Don't worry - we have pictures Here.

P.S. - We got Momofuku KO reservations for this Wednesday in NYC. I think we are pretty lucky, don't you??

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Loving Life And Limb

Marie and I love to eat. We like to check out new restaurants in Pittsburgh every week, and especially to help support the Pittsburgh Chefs and Restaurants. This past week, we went to Arlecchino, a restaurant by Jonathon Vlasic from Alla Famiglia. The food was extremely good, and we even had this intense pasta course, where the server would put hot pasta and cream into a large cheese wheel and scrape the cheese until it created an Alfredo-like sauce. It was like your favorite Macaroni and Cheese created in front of you. Check out Pictures here.

We also ended up at KAYA this week, one of our favorite Big Burrito restaurants. We ran into our friend Erica there (who is Chef Keith Fuller's girlfriend), and she bought us a bottle of "Life and Limb" (Version 2) a collaboration of Sierra Nevada and Dogfish Head that they re-did a second time for the beer lovers in us. We always have terrific meals at KAYA, so thanks!

As for the rest of our fun-filled week - we ended up going to the Pittsburgh Steeler game on Sunday, thanks to our good friend Bruce Arians. Here are some pictures from our Sunday Funday together with our friends.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Chef Family Dinners in Pittsburgh

This past Sunday, some of the Pittsburgh Restaurant Chef's got together to do a "pot luck" family dinner. This week, it was held at ROOT 174, whose head chef and owner is my friend Keith Fuller. In the picture to the left, you will see me and my friend Bryan from Spoon. We all brought in a dish, along with some wine or other favorite item, and shared with one another. This was such a great way to interact with a lot of the Pittsburgh Restaurant food scene. We are going to try to do this every so often to give us all a chance to unwind and talk about what we love about what we do, and that is FOOD. Here are a few pics from Sunday.

Another thing we have been working hard at this week is BRUNCH. The food has really been looking good. It is served from 10:30 - 2 pm Saturday and Sunday. Here are some pictures of some menu items.

Here are some Pictures of some of our brunch menu items

Post a comment on what you like for brunch!!

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