Early in the week my handler asked if I’d like to go to Ad Hoc on Thursday. Would I ever! Ad Hoc has been a favorite ever since Emily and I first sampled the Monday fried chicken. Needless to say I have the cookbook and have cooked a good bit from it. One of my old cooking cronies was actually in town and my handler had graciously extended the reservation for the two of us.
We decided to settle in at the bar since there was room. I actually love to sit at the bar in restaurants since I find it is always a bit more entertaining. My friend Peter and I caught up on things and we ordered some sparkling wine to start the meal. Chef C pulled out some of the stops for us as we were quickly served a small cup of pea soup with creme fraiche. Then they brought us a wonderful salad with fresh apple and radishes. It was time to order something a little darker for the upcoming courses so I talked to Naveed (sp?) behind the bar. He eventually recommended a Napa Pinot. I was a bit incredulous since it seems like Napa is too hot for Pinot but I had to admit it was pretty darn good. He even gave me a sample of their Chardonnay to have with another extra course, arctic char. Wow, delicious (on both counts). Then it was on to the main course, the skirt steak and we had opted to get some bone marrow as well. This was an incredibly rich and wonderful dish. The steak was just perfect and the marrow was kind of like the best butter in the world. They were actually recommending a beer to pair with the cheese course. I explained to Naveed and Katie that many enthusiastic beer drinkers had attempted to convert me but that I simply don’t like the taste. Katie only took this as a challenge and made me a shandy which turned out to taste a lot like a grownup creamsicle. In other words, yum! My adivce: if you ever go to Ad Hoc (which you should!) never doubt Katie or Naveed. The final course was an ethereal cake which tasted like a cross between a pound cake and angel food cake with a crisp sugar top. This was served with two different sorbets and together they were just off the hook. Wow, what an enjoyable meal with a friend I hadn’t seen and the Ad Hoc staff who are just first rate.
I decided to be a bit un-Joshlike and asked to say thanks to the Chef. They agreed and Peter and I shyly walked in to gush at our meal. I think I saw a slight twinkle of his eye when I correctly guessed the pepper that had be in the arctic char sauce but maybe I was just hoping :).