|Course 20: aged lamb,fresh coriander, mint jelly - oh dear lord the delicious fat!|
|Plating the (outrageous) beef carpaccio for course 14|
|the resting Poulet Rouge (Course 21)|
|Charring the Pen Clam (Course 11)|
But enough blathering, onto the food! By my count, we got 27 courses, which roughly speaking ranged from really good to freaking awesome. As Sifton noted, Blanca is right at home in the company of Momofuku Ko or Brooklyn Fare in spirit and quality of food, though obviously one difference is that photography is allowed at Blanca. Take this with a grain of salt, because I've only been to Brooklyn Fare once (when I may have gone a bit overboard on the BYO) and though I've been to Ko many times, it's been quite a while, but I think Brooklyn Fare _might_ have a very slight overall edge on the seafood courses, and Ko _might_ have a bit more flair, if only for its inventive Asian twists, but Blanca at least holds its own on those fronts, but utterly blows away anywhere else on the planet with its meat courses. I know that sounds (and feels as I type it) like absurd hyperbole, but a week later it still feels true to me.
I'll spare you photos of all 27 courses, but if you want to see them they are all on flickr, as well as picasa (also embedded below). Please forgive me if I misdescribe a course or two, I didn't take notes so I'm relying on memory and hints from the web, but it should be mostly right. The first course was Russian Golden Osetra, which I'm actually not sure if I've ever had before, here served with goat milk granita. In case you are wondering it's damn good.
|Course 2: Glass shrimp, poppy, celery flower and juice|
|Course 4: Soft Shell Crab Claw|
Course 4 was a singular expertly tempura'd soft shell crab claw. One wonders what became of all those bodies and legs; family meal treat perhaps?
|Course 6: Sweetbread|
6th course was an excellent sweetbread, I'm not sure if the preparation is the same as is available a la carte at Roberta's but it was similar. If anything I might prefer the plate at Roberta's,but that's probably only because there are more.
|Course 7: Bonito|
I have to mention the next course of Bonito, as it was every bit as good as I've had at sushi places both in NY and Tokyo.
Skipping a bit, course 12 was my beloved Uni:
|Course 12: uni, tofu, ash leaf|
|Course 14: beef carpaccio, egg yolk, arugula|
|Course 15: wheat pasta, razor clam|
|Course 16: garganelli w/ ragu|
|Course 17: nduja raviolo|
Followed by a spot prawn with aleppo pepper & tarragon
|Course 19: spot prawn, aleppo, tarragon|
We were walked back from the brink with an excellent but less lustily rich whole roasted poulet rouge:
|Course 21: plated poulet rouge, porcini|
|Course 23: aged (wagyu?), hearts of palm, vin cotto|
After the last several courses of such power, a cool down was in order. Not a dead stop mind you, but a bridge, yet powerful in its own right, leading to a softer landing. The well conceived choice was a stinky cheese, I believe Époisses, tempered with freshly scraped honeycomb and garnished with radish.
|scraping the honeycomb to plate cheese course|
|Course 24: stinky (Époisses?) cheese, radish, honeycomb|
l if you'd like to see accounts of similar meals on other days, Eater has one, here is another, and one more.
|winding down after service|