I believe that the best things in life are unplanned, such as the culinary journey that I experienced last night. I received an unexpected phone call late in the afternoon and was invited to a table of four at NEXT, Grant Achatz’s sought after restaurant in Chicago. As I was as excited about this news as when I travel, I realized that food and wine has taken a back seat this year. I have already experienced Grant Achatz’s Alinea, a meal that I would consider the finest that I have ever tasted (except for maybe the seafood extravaganza that a then chef boyfriend prepared for me on HIS birthday), and I was eager to try NEXT, especially since I tried to get tickets twice (there is no reservation system as a ticketing system is used) and was unsuccessful.
As we were given an introduction of the menu
printed on parchment paper, it was apparent that we would embark on a
culinary journey that wold take us to Kyoto, specifically, Autumn in
Kyoto. The journey began with an ambrosia of tea that tasted of
slightly burnt corn husks. In the middle of our journey we were
presented with a table centerpiece that had stalks of burning hay while
we enjoyed gorgeous presentations of our multi course tastings expertly
paired with wines and sake. Yes, we were all enjoying our culinary ride
to Kyoto, even taking pictures of our food like typical tourists,
until…the “first snowfall.” After three hours of food, wine, and
sake, our journey came to an abrupt halt. It seemed like a very short
journey, just like all my other trips and journeys. Of course, I wanted
to keep going. But our 12 course culinary journey came to an end. As I
came home at close to 1:00 a.m., I went to bed with a big smile on my
face. When I woke up this morning, my smile was still there. Then, I
realized that my addiction to food porn is revitalized.
kinds of wine. Am I in heaven?