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Reviews worth eating

McCrady’s has been on my short list for a while, but Chuck’s review makes it official – I have to find a reason to go to Charleston. I have no idea why people visit Charleston or how a city that small can even sustain a restaurant as ambitious as McCrady’s, but it’s almost irrelevant at this point.

What sealed the deal for me is the concept of modern dishes that integrate regional flavors, which is the very aspect that makes Restaurant August such an exciting place to eat. The Woodlands location of America’s is heading in the same direction, but its still far from a food-first restaurant built around a chef’s vision.

Oyster, Ham Consommé, Cornbread
It would be hard to find a more haute southern dish than this – the mix of the oyster’s brininess and the consomme’s saltiness provided the backbone of the dish. Brock takes his ham seriously (can you say Alan Benton?) and I suspect it finds its way into more dishes than I realized.

I’d go just for that one dish alone. Maybe there is a chance Sean Brock will follow Michael Kramer and end up in Houston?

I booked a table at L2O in Chicago not long after it opened, when it was still flying under the radar. Some of the early reviews are surprisingly strong and photos of Laurent Gras creations look absolutely stunning.

20080514_L2O-01_061  Extra 1: Ossetra Caviar (toro, avocado)  

I am re-visiting Alinea the night before my dinner at L2O, but I am starting to wonder which meal I will be more excited about by the time I arrive in Chicago.

Monkey Tail Fern  L20.1901.web

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