I haven’t blogged since I moved to SLC. Not a calculated decision, but one I’ve grown mostly comfortable with (except for the few times I’ve wished I had better documentation of my life). But this seemed as good a place as any to share the details of the crazy amazing dinner experience I had the other night at The Catbird Seat in Nashville.
It’s a tiny dining room, with about 20 seats around a u-shaped bar. There are two corner tables that seat about 5 people each. The chefs prepare the meal in front of you. You tell them if you’re allergic to anything, but other than that, there is no menu or way to predict what you will be served. Adventure!!
I took notes that reflect my interest in food and paying attention. But you’ll get the gist. Parentheses are comments I’m adding now.
1. Clam shot horseradish something.
(The first thing you should know is that I’m not huge into spicy things.)
2. Oyster from Puget Sound that tasted like a cucumber with some stuff on it.
(The second thing you should know is that I don’t eat oysters.)
3. Sunchoke with accoutrements – I really liked this.
4. Sea urchin tongue with some frozen mandarin. I have no idea what I just ate.
5. I think he said apple cheese herb adventure?
(I should probably mention I had a crafty alcoholic beverage (Up to My Knees from The Patterson House prior to the meal. The courses of the meal are also paired with various wines/cocktails. Foreshadowing.)
6. Pecan butter huckleberry salad. Like a PB & J salad. But it worked. Starting to get scared.
Neil Patrick Harris would be taking pix of each course, but I’m out of my comfort zone and focusing on eating. And drinking. Wine with everything. Pairings. I had a vodka craft drink before this. #goodthingItookaLyft (yes I hashtag in notes to myself)
The people next to me just got steak tartar. They’re a lil ahead of me. Sh*ts about to get real. Why am I not live tweeting this?
7. Sturgeon, potatoes, sourdough broth foam. This was tasty.
Apparently I could have chosen a vegetarian option. #risktaker #unplannedmeatday
This is fun! I want everyone to do this!
There’s a guy here wearing a Bluetooth. #easilydistracted
8. Maine scallops smoked quickly and then something oniony and capers with it. So yum. Favorite so far? I just spooned straight up onions into my mouth and loved it. (I don’t (usually) like onions.)
How many courses is this?
U2 “With or Without You ” just came on and I thought about crying, so things are going well.
9. Ribeye tartar. Dried/aged? 45 days. From local farmer. Lingonberries and grains (crunchy quinoa) and greenery and yogurt. The crunchy grain makes texture ok. I’m doin it you guys. I just ate the sh*t out of some raw beef. #sorrynotsorry #lovedit #imsoconfused #drinkingwinehelps
The guys don’t like it when I get spoilers from the people next to me. #cucumbersnow
10. Endive marmalade grilled apple duck. Something pistachio. OMG get in my mouth.
New friends want to grab drinks. Eating meat has turned into a slippery slope. A slippery phenomenally tasty slope. New friends: “You just killed that plate of duck.” #ivealwayslikedduck Truth: I would eat more of that tartar right now. (This is the second time I’ve had meat tartar, the first time was back when I lived in Paris. I don’t remember liking it half as much as this.)
Just joined my new friends in a joyous rendition of Happy Birthday. Guys in corner clapped. Proud of how ballsed out I’ve been about this meal. #youonlyliveonce
They just brought me a beer from Brussels to go with my next course:
11. Beer cheese, puffed rice, onions, mustard. Get in my mouth. Thought rice was bugs. Truth I would eat anything they gave me at this point.
12. Cucumber snow is the best thing I’ve ever put in my mouth. Meyer lemons, something creamy, blah blah blah. More snow pls.
I understand foodies now. Do not come to Nashville without eating here. They book out a month in advance. Worth it. Have thoroughly enjoyed entire experience. They say Terra in NYC is comparable.
13. Oak wood ice cream shaved cherries on top. Burning wood next to ice cream. (Smelled divine.)
14. Potato cake pastry thing. Mamie (sp?) “that’s the cutest one.” (She surveyed several before putting one in front of me.) This place just lost its sh*t over “We Built This City” and I just ate a pastry with cream inside #nothingmakessenserightnow
15. Lemon thyme Meyer lemon macaroon.
In closing, if you give a vegetarian raw meat, make it crunchy.”If I’m going to eat meat, can there at least be bacon?” #thingsvegetarianssay