Manresa, Los Gatos (September 2013)

Quite awhile back I was talking with my good friend BLT(the Beltless Tiger) about all the meals we had intended to write posts about but never got around to. We both had a good number we were too lazy busy to put up promptly and by the time motivation struck it seemed to be too late or irrelevant and he (jokingly I think) made a suggestion that we start doing Throwback Thursday posts. It seemed like a good enough idea and I thought for months that I would get going on it any day now. At last the moment has come. Manresa for a few years now has been my favorite restaurant in the US. Until an accident thwarted my planned 2014 trip, the Los Gatos restaurant was the only place I had made an effort to dine at each year since 2009. My nights there are consistently among the best dining experiences of my life. As I’m sitting in my Wall Street apartment looking forward to my next meal at the hands of David Kinch and team in mere weeks, and even more so feeling thrilled at the announcement that Michelin has finally awarded them a third star, I am getting around to posting about my dinner with Rocky from roughly two years ago.

manresa table setting

At my preferred table, ready to rock.

manresa red pepper black olive

manresa red pepper pdf black olive madeline

Petit fours “red pepper-black olive” Kinch’s signature opener of red pepper pate de fruits and black olive madeleines. Good vegetal balance in the PDF and lightly sweet, nicely dense madeleine.

manresa garden beignets leaves

Garden beignets and leaves  Light savory beignets with crispy kale leaves.

manresa 25 tomatoes

25 tomatoes, coriander  A beautiful expression of the fruit in the height of the season.

manresa almond tofu

Almond tofu, berries and verbena, melon snow  Not really sweet, but almost dessert-like. Tart dried fruit and expressive almond flavors.

manresa abalone milk panna cotta

Abalone and local milk panna cotta  Monterey Bay abalone, braised and in gelée, with breakfast radish and panna cotta.

manresa summer beans octopus

Summer beans with octopus, horseradish  Ever slightly charred Moroccan octopus with summer beans and lychee tomato. The acid-starch balance was kickin.

manresa fava bean risotto

manresa fava bean risotto

Without rice, fava bean risotto, sheep’s milk cheese  With summer truffle and mushrooms. Mind-blowing legume treatment combined with mushroom earth and an enchanting, almost hypnotizing truffle and cheese perfume. Rocky put this in heavy contention for dish of the trip.

manresa into the vegetable garden

manresa into the garden

manresa vegetable garden

Into the vegetable garden…  A consistently stunning homage to Le Gargouillou by Michel Bras. A flawless journey of pea leaves, lambs quarters, nasturtium, beet, malabar spinach, ice plant, arugula, wild dandelion, and many other vegetables, leaves, and flowers.

manresa albacore puttanesca

manresa albacore cassava

Albacore “puttanesca,” lightly smoked, crispy cassava  The acid and brine in the puttanesca was great support to smoked meaty fish.

manresa summer clams beans pine mushroom

manresa clams beans mushroom

Summer clams and beans in a pine mushroom broth  Various clams with seabream in a dashi broth accompanied by matsutake mushrooms, seaweed, beans, and peas. Badass savory layers.

manresa duck figs fennel milk honey

Duck, confit of figs and wild fennel, milk and honey  An outstandingly great roasted aged duck breast with leek, fennel, and turnip and a touch of sweetness from figs and honey.

manresa lamb dates olives

manresa lamb

Lamb with dates and olives, onion fondue  Straight forward and damn delicious.

manresa cheese cart

manresa cheese plate

A selection of cheese from the cart. Varying styles from California, Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska, and New York.

manresa plums butterscotch buckwheat black walnut

Andy’s plums with butterscotch, buckwheat, black walnut  Smoothly rich butterscotch with perfect plums, crisply buckwheat, and popcorn. Perfect.

manersa strawberry white chocolate milk pebbles yuba

manresa strawberries white chocolate

Strawberries and white chocolate, malted milk pebbles, crispy yuba  Fresh strawberries, strawberry ice, and strawberry mousse in a white chocolate shell over crunchy malt crumbles with small bursts of mint.

manresa raspberry chocolate coffee parfait

manresa raspberry chocolate

Raspberries, chocolate-coffee parfait, golden raspberry sorbet, almond

manresa bon bon macaron

Mint bonbon and coffee macaron

manresa strawberry chocolate

Petit fours “strawberry-chocolate”  The signature closer of strawberry pate de fruits and chocolate madeleines.

manresa take home muffin

And a treat for breakfast. An outrageously superb meal.

Date of visit: September 7, 2013

Manresa. 320 Village Lane, Los Gatos, CA  408 354 4330  www.manresarestaurant.com

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This Guy on Twitter

Nice to stop off in LFK. I have always loved this city. Great lunch at @portfondalawrence with @thischickrocky

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