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Saucy Soiree

June 29, 2010

I attended Sauce Magazine’s “Saucy Soiree” last night, an event to announce & celebrate the winners of their annual readers’ choice poll (see the July issue of Sauce for all the details). It was a celebration of good food, to be sure. Compared to last year’s soiree, the chefs really stepped it up this year & offered some pretty elaborate dishes.

I particularly thought that Niche’s egg custard—lemon & maple custard topped with shitake mushrooms & bonito caviar—served in an eggshell was damn ambitious for such a large crowd. A beautiful & delicious dish, it was my favorite of the night. I don’t eat at Niche enough, and I really need to go there more often. I’m looking forward to celebrating two FBM birthdays (Annie & Kelli) with dinner there next weekend.

My second favorite dish was Franco’s pommes gaufrettes (aka waffled potato chips) with soft quail egg & duck prosciutto, three of my favorite things—potato, egg, bacon—in one bite. I ate three of them.

Another favorite was the vichyssoise (chilled potato & leek soup) from Brasserie by Niche, which was presented to us as “Julia Child’s favorite soup.” I confess that I’ve never eaten vichyssoise before, and DAMN was it good. WHY HAVEN’T I BEEN MAKING THIS? I plan to try Julia’s recipe SOON.

I also really liked Sidney Street Café’s pork beggar’s purses served in a chilled tomato soup.  I’ve been telling Jerad that we need to eat there soon, since he’s never been to Sidney Street. I’ll make sure we do that in the next few weeks.

And then there was wild boar bolognese with polenta from Eleven Eleven Mississippi, the she-crab soup from Vin de Set, the crab & corn “nachos” from Farmhaus, and the marinated white anchovy with roasted red pepper & capers from Modesto…the food was really quite outstanding overall.

An event such as this one, that celebrates the talented chefs in St. Louis & the great food they are creating, makes me proud to be a part of this city. It also makes me want to eat out more. Alas, a teacher’s salary doesn’t permit my eating out too often. I think I need a sugar daddy.

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