Friday, June 3, 2011

The Perfect Storm

The weather has been really crazy lately, not just in Boston, but around the world. This past Wednesday pays tribute to this nonsense as we experienced tornado warnings in the city and some serious devastation in Western MA.
On this particular day, I had gotten a group of people together to take advantage of the free admission at the MFA Wednesday evenings to see the Chihuly exhibit. By around five oclock, my big group had dwindled down to three people...including myself.  I understand why you might want to stay inside when the outdoors looks like an apocalyptic scene, from my perspective, if things were about to go down, I would much rather be in a beautiful exhibit room than alone in my apartment...

Thus it was that I ventured out to the MFA (and didn't get the slightest drop of rain on me on the way there) to meet with the other two troupers. I am very glad we stuck it to the weather man!
The exhibit was exquisite and we had time to meander around some other rooms as well. Knowing that museums kick up my appetite, I made a reservation for Estragon, Toro's rival tapas restaurant in the South End and a place I had been looking to try for a while now. Lucky for me (and my friends) I had a nice Groupon to use.

Estragon helped us in two ways: first it satisfied our need for a cultural meal to end a cultural evening and second, it saved us from the monsoon which quickly developped once we stepped out of the museum. We started with some much needed white sangria, made with the (in)famous St. Germain liqueur.

Their fried chickpeas are always spoken most highly of and indeed make for the perfect bar snack. They are so crispy and light with tasty seasoning...these did not last long!

Next we ordered their fried eggplant sticks with salsa Bravas, a traditional slightly sweet, slightly spicy sauce. These were quite good although I found them a bit too deeply fried,  a lighter batter would have complemented the subtle texture and flavour of the eggplant more thoroughly.

The salt cod fritters were a major hit. I could easily have eaten the whole serving. They were stuffed with incredibly tasty fish, not too salty and the fried balance came out much better with this dish.

For the pièce de résistance, we ordered their goat cheese stuffed chicken breast with Bechamel and Chili-Peach coulis. This dish was beautiful, the goat cheese married with the other sauces while each managed to hold its own uniqueness. The thin layer of crispy breading (fried dishes seemed to be the theme of this visit..) provided a great contrast to the smoothness of the goat cheese. The chicken was perfectly cooked. Every last bit was wiped off the is a great dish.
We finished the night with their flourless chocolate cake: traditional, classic,  rich.
The whole night played out amazingly well considering the weather predictions. We felt as though we were facing the elements of the world and what better way to do it than a cultural journey through the MFA and a great meal?
The evening definately gets awarded five ballerinas...for fun, adventure, quality and danger...the forty dollar groupon certainly helped us along as well:) Oh and in comparison to Toro...I will need another go:)

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