Last 2010 recap list, I promise. I wasn't going to post a best meal list but I was fortunate enough to have experienced so many enjoyable meals in 2010 that I wanted to post a list as a personal thank you to the chefs and restaurants responsible for a great culinary year.
10a. Sakaya Kitchen "Cobaya in the night" - Midnight madness featuring Papa's shrimp and pork egg rolls, pork buns, Korean fried sweetbreads, frog legs and pork belly with crispy bone marrow and coconut rice. Great meal from start to finish featuring items not seen on the daily menu. Chef Hales killed it in 2010. ** I neglected to include the pork belly dish on my Best Dishes 2010 post and it should have easily been on that list.
10. Cobaya Gras - Chef K, Chadzilla & Big Basco with pastry chef Rissone sprinkled in (Chris too) made for a fantastic meal and fun time. I was transported back to New Orleans which a special place to me. It was almost Cobaya Monsoon but the Cobaya gods came through.
9. Cobaya Altamare - Gracious host, great pours, fun group, enjoyable meal from start to finish. Lamb heart.
8. Michael Mina (SF) - Celebrated a big birthday with the beautiful Chowprincess in a great city. Chef Mina was in the house and it was a fantastic all around meal. Special thanks to Sommelier Matthew Turner for some pours of a lifetime. I'm officially old now...
7. Bourbon Steak (Miami) "Cobaya Steak" - White glove experience all around. Great company, great room, great service, great wine and outstanding food prepared by Chef Fenton. Big thank you to GM John Riccardo, one of the best in the business, for making sure this was a special evening.
6. French Laundry- This may have been the best prepared meal I will ever have coupled with the best ingredients (truffles, caviar, sea urchin) but it was almost too perfect which made it feel somewhat safe and dare I say on the boring side. Still an outstanding meal and experience.
5. Fig (Charleston) - This was a fantastic meal from start to finish. The crispy caw caw pig trotters were my second favorite dish of the year. This is the kind of place I would visit regularly if I lived there.
4. Neptune Oyster (Boston) - Legendary eating display with my closest friend who I don't get to break bread with often. Dozen(s) of awesome oysters, even better warm lobster rolls and a perfect marriage of pork and oysters via neptunes on piggy back.
3. Benu (SF) - Creative, cutting edge, A+ ingredients executed to perfection, delicious. This place is going to be real hard to get into in 2011.
2. Naoe- Creative and exciting bento box followed by mind blowing sushi. I had the good fortune to dine there several times this year and each one was special. My first visit was in early 2010 with three other passionate food lovers. A 3+ hour meal flies by when surrounded by good company and great conversation. Wendy and Chef Cory Rock.
1. Michael's Genuine Food & Drink - Father's Day Brunch with Chowprincess and the Chowbabies a/k/a the Chowtoddlertwins. Nothing beats outstanding food (Kimchi benedict) with your own children on Father's day. Plus it was fun watching my son dominate duck confit hash and my daughter destroy Hedy's pop-tarts.