Friday, September 24, 2004

Park Slope Gastronome #3 - A Field Trip

ok, so i was only going to write about restaurants in my neighborhood, but decided that might be a bit too limiting. last night, i took my girl heidi to chikalicious as a belated birthday present. chikalicious is a newish restaurant in the east village that only serves desserts. they offer a 3 course prix fixe, which consists of an amuse, dessert entree and petit fours. the space is a stark box of white and metal - heidi likened it to a muji store.

we both began with a small bulb of lemon ice cream set upon a mound of lemongrass jelly. the jelly was so incredibly delicate, i was amazed at how it was able to keep its solid shape. it melted in your mouth, releasing a crisp, clean and tangy burst. the lemon ice cream was smooth and tart - why don't more people make it? you see lemon ice and sorbets all the time, but lemon ice cream is so rare! for my main course, i chose the warm chocolate tart with pink peppercorn ice cream and red wine sauce. i splurged for the wine pairing and was presented with a glass of mas amiel maury cuvee special 10 yr. i have no idea what that means, but the mas amiel was a delicious accompaniment. not overly sweet and very smooth. the warm chocolate tart was essentially one of those chocolate volcano, molten lava cakes. the crust was made out of a butterly tuile batter and its crunch contrasted nicely with the smoothness of the warm chocolate batter. i enjoyed the red wine sauce, but probably would have preferred it to have been reduced down a bit more. the ice cream was a mound of blushing vanilla. heidi opted for a seared plum half that was served with a ginger vanilla anglaise and something else i couldn't remember. i had eyed that dish too, but i've developed an allergy to stone fruits in the last five years which means i can't eat plums, peaches and cherries. it's a total bummer because i love all three! i think it's ok when the fruit is cooked or pastuerized, like in cherry garcia ice cream. that doesn't affect me.

our petit fours course had a coconut marshmallow, black peppercorn biscotti with hazelnut and a green tea chocolate truffle. i tried the marshamallow first, and upon first touch was swept to the clouds. no, really, i was! the texture was so amazing. it was like squeezing a mogu pillow, only daintier. the biscotti was interesting and it wouldn't surprise me to learn that a half hazelnut gets placed in each one by hand, rather than being mixed in with the dough. the truffle disappeared into my mouth with a puff of cocoa powder. it was the perfect size, slightly bigger than a marble. it was a delicious capper to a delicious meal of sweets.

Food: A
Service: A

Coda: we went across the street to rai rai ken for noodles afterwards. how i love that place!



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