Lori and I had the great fortune of getting seats at Bibou's New Years Eve dinner last Friday. It happened quite spontaneously. I was lunching with Brother Tim when he got a Twitter alert that they had a last minute cancellation. I was told it would be an 8 course meal with seatings at 5:30pm or 9:00pm. I opted for the 9pm, which turned out to be the better choice in my humble opinion.
It's difficult to choose standouts from an entire meal of incredible dishes. The amuse-bouche of hamachi, paddlefish caviar and creme fraiche was a great start. Followed very well by foie gras terrine with persimmon chutney. My favorites of the night, though, were the perfectly seared venison with mushroom fricassée, chestnut and celeriac puree, and the pumpkin bread, blue cheese and dried figs Mille-feuille for dessert. A full menu of the night is right below.
As 2011 approached, Charlotte brought out festive noisemakers and hats as well as complimentary champagne for everyone in attendance. The whole room rang out in cheers and celebration, the end to a night of true conviviality. But the night was only half over.
We took our time paying the bill and the room slowly emptied. Before we knew it, the restaurant was closed and we were still inside talking to Chef Pierre, Charlotte and the wait staff. I have never met such an honest, hardworking and hospitable group of people in all of my dining experiences. I had a hard time not gushing to Pierre about how much I loved everything. I think I used the word fantastic a few dozen times.
By the time we did leave it was well into the morning and we had to walk a bit to find a cab ride home. But we left with our spirits and stomachs full. Quite a way to begin a new year and a new decade.