Thursday, December 20, 2007

Updates and thoughts...

Say what you like about Emeril Lagasse. Some dislike him because he suffers from, as one author penned, a deplorable excess of personality. Others think he makes food too simple or dumbs it down. There are times he grates my nerves like nails on a chalkboard and others that he bores me to tears with the routine. However no one should ever say he dumbs down anything...especially food. I had the privilege to dine in the flagship restaurant again today. The first trip was in '03 and I was on vacation here (New Orleans) in the city. Today was my office Christmas party (we're a small, family type office and we celebrate Christmas, not holidays). I enjoyed the porkchop again (this one was a single cut, not double) along with lobster bisque and the meyer lemon frozen souffle. The service was flawless as was the food itself - one of the best dining experiences I have ever encountered. There was nothing dumb about the masterful flavor combination of caramelized sweet potatoes, the tangy sweet sour of the tamarind glaze, and the subtle heat of the green chile mole. Chef Lagasse has a charisma that many might envy - but he brings food to the masses and shows them that there is no magic in restaurant kitchens that a home cook, with time and effort, cannot duplicate.

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