First: I really enjoyed my meal at Prime 1000, my last stop in the quest for the ideal steak. You might not think so while you read this, because I take a few nauseating turns.
The Showme Steak
I cornered our waiter early on and pointed to "dry-aged" on the menu. "Is this really dry-aged?" I demanded.
"Follow me and I can show you."
Observe: The Meat. It looks pretty damn old. The fresh-looking pink slabs are salt.
I told you, it's quite an unappetizing review, especially in contrast to the tasty food.
Our Menu Selections
I had these foods. (Pork products highlighted in bold.)
**** Carrot and Elderflower Soup garnished with Crispy Spec and Candied Sunflower Seeds
*** Grilled Asparagus with Fermin Serrano Jamon and Poached Quail Egg
**** Dry Aged New York Strip Steak with Candied Bacon Sauce on the side
**** Black Pepper Spice Cake with Marscapone and Salted Caramel
Gary had these foods. (Mushrooms highlighted in bold.)
**** Vegetable Salad with Caramelized Onions, Roast Apple and Goat Cheese (and wee white mushrooms)
*** Crispy Sweetbreads with Duroc Bacon, Roasted Artichoke and Truffle Emulsion
**** Flakey Pastry with a Fricassee of Maitake, Shiitake & Crimini Mushrooms
**** Dry Aged New York Strip Steak with Wild Mushroom and Balsamic Sauce on the side
**** Chocolate Cake with Anise and Berries
In addition, the chef decided it was Fun With Butter night. He created Saffron Butter, Goat Cheese Butter, and Marrow Butter.Oh, and our bouches were museed by a tasty scrap of crusty stuff and some micro-greens (including, regrettably, micro cilantro) and ... crab, I believe.
Gary Starts off With The Shameful Disgusting Talk
The first thing that came to the table was our shared appetizer of sweetbreads. I forgot it had a truffle emulsion, which looks like froth. I immediately thought "Egg whites." Gary, on the other hand, went with "Spit!" Soon the waiter came by and reassured me that it was not egg whites but frothed truffles. He left.
"Oh, the pig that rooted up the truffles had a sinus infection. So this is pig snot."
I Continue With The Shameful Disgusting Talk
The steak was tasty. It didn't taste like chewy pink water, as recent steaks have. It tasted like a steak. Gary had the same cut. He had a morsel of fat on his plate, a morsel he foolishly cast aside.
Go back with me to my days between second and sixth grades. On Steak Night, my brother would trim all the fat from his cooked steak, and then the bartering would begin. Usually I would get away with trading the right side of my T-bone for all his fat. Because, and I know this is scandalous to say aloud today: I Love Steak Fat.
At least, I loved steak fat, back in the day when "marbled" meant not only that the steak was juicy, but you would get these bonus fire-crisped morsels of buttery beef tallow all along the sides. It. Was. Great. And, this steak had that taste. You can tell me it's because the fat gets filled with bacteria while it dry-ages and I don't care. "Don't care!" she says, as she shovels steak fat in her mouth.
My cut was leaner than his, so I kept spearing his discarded fat and gobbling it up. Eventually he held the plate over my head and gave it to the waiter.
Gary Tries To Rise Above the Shameful Disgusting Talk by Speaking French
He ordered "Cafe au lait" with our dessert. His exact words were "Two cafe au lait."
The waiter responded with "Coffee with hot water, yes sir," and bustled off.
"What did he say?" Gary asked.
"Maybe he means he's getting espresso and water and milk?"
We were more confused when the waiter came back with black coffee, sat it down, and said, "I hope I didn't make it too weak."
Um. Okay? "Annnnd ... do you have cream?" because I didn't see any au lait in the cafe.
All we could figure is that Gary's "cafe au lait" (kah-fey ah lay) sounded too much like "cafe l'eau" (kah-fey low), or "coffee water."
We came home, spooned on the bed, and listened to our bellies have an animated gurgle conversation. It was a phenomenal meal and I'm happy to digest it.