Covering the dining scene in and around the OC
California’s ban on the sale of Foie Gras goes into effect July 1, which means time is running out for discriminating diners to enjoy this decadent delicacy before Culinary Prohibition kicks in.
So where in Orange County can foie fans go to get their final fix? Start with Yelp, which has a lengthy list of local restaurants that are serving some sort of foie gras dish.
However, two places come to mind that offer the ultimate foie gras options: Brasserie Pascal in Newport Beach and Stonehill Tavern at St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort.
Chef Pascal Olhats’ has concocted a special Foie Gras menu at Brasserie Pascal. Select three items (starter, entree, and dessert) for $55, or order a la carte.
The menu includes:
Endive and Frisee Salad with Foie Gras Mousse, Caramelized Green Apples and White Balsamic Vinaigrette
Thyme Roasted Wild Mushroom Soup A la-Crème, with a Foie Gras Gourgere
Seared Foie Gras Au-Raisins with Leeks, Grapes and Muscat Wine
Pan Seared Day Boat Scallops served with Foie Gras Risotto, maple Glazed Baby Carrots and Truffle Jus
Tournedos Rossini – Grilled Filet Mignon on top of buttered Toast Rounds, served with Pomme Chateau, Sauteed Asparagus and topped with Seared Foie Gras
Roasted Airline Chicken with Foie Gras – Chicken Breast Stuffed with Seared Foie Gras and Served with an array of Root Vegetables and a Madeira Sauce
Pascal’s Raspberry Bread Pudding topped with a Foie Gras Chantilly
Pascal invited me to his restaurant to sample the menu, an offer this foodie could not refuse after reading the descriptions of the dishes.
The Endive and Frisee Salad with Foie Gras Mousse, Caramelized Green Apples and White Balsamic Vinaigrette is a fun twist on a traditional meal starter, while the Thyme Roasted Wild Mushroom Soup A La Crème with Foie Gras Gourgere is hearty and delicious.
My favorite appetizer is the Seared Foie Gras Au Raisins with Leeks, Grapes and Muscat Wine. It’s a fairly simple preparation with a perfect combination of flavors. Pascal suggested I pair the dish with a glass of Sauternes, which went well with the foie gras.
Of the three entrees, I most enjoyed the Pan Seared Day Boat Scallops, served with Foie Gras Risotto, Maple Glazed Baby Carrots, and Truffle Jus. The scallops are melt in your mouth tender, and the foie gras risotto offers the ideal balance of flavors and texture.
The other two entrees are also nicely done: Grilled Filet Mignon on Buttered Toast Rounds topped with Seared Foie Gras, and Roasted Airline Chicken with Foie Gras.
“So Pascal, what happens after July 1?” I wondered. “Will it be like prohibition in the 1920s, with illicit foie gras parlors and bathtub foie farms?”
“Maybe,” laughed Pascal.
“Can you make some sort of faux foie with another ingredient, or is this really a farewell to foie?”
“Well, we’ll have to see what happens,” said Pascal.
For more information on Pascal’s foie gras menu, visit PascalNPB.com.
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Meanwhile, down in South OC, Stonehill Tavern at St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort has an over-the-top Foie Gras Tasting Menu:
Amuse Bouche of foie gras dashi, uni, kumamoto oyster, and tonburi
Shaved Foie Gras with black grapes, shallot jam, and pink peppercorn brioche
Seared Foie Gras with buddha confit , banana, sesame, and walnuts
California Squab with pickled green papaya, foie gras, vanilla, and hoja santa
Wagyu Striploin with porcini mushrooms, roasted shallot, blue cheese, and foie gras bordelaise
Peanut Sundae with foie gras arlette, persian mulberry, and balsamic caramel.
The Foie Gras Tasting Menu is $159 per person. You can also pair each course with carefully selected wines for an additional $88.
My assistant Catherine and I sampled a separate Chef’s Tasting Menu several weeks ago and were blown away by the presentation, the creativity of the dishes, and the sensational flavors. I have no doubt this Foie Gras menu is equally dazzling. I know I won’t be the only one paying a visit to Stonehill Tavern this week.
For reservations, call (949) 234-2218, or visit www.stregismb.com/stonehill-tavern.
Thanks for reading!