Tuesday, August 11, 2009

7 Meals in 7 Nights: Saturday - Palm Beach Grill

I woke up Saturday morning around 8am feeling pretty good. Id hit the hay early so I was well rested and ready to go play 18 holes with Rick from South Florida Daily Blog. My game was streaky and I hung in there for about 13 holes then birdied the 14th to get within 5 only to put one in the drink and go down 7 on the 15th, pretty much ending the match. Rick had 1 blowup hole and I managed to win the back 9 and lose by 3 overall without losing a ball so that sure helped me sleep easier. Well, that and the wine and bourbon I was about to consume...

After golf I hit the showers at home and then packed a light bag and headed up to West Palm. Some friends were moving into a new house they'd rented and my cousin also lives up there so good times were set to be had. (Side note here: I don't know what it is about West Palm but I always end up having a kickass time when I'm up there. I guess its kinda like a mini-vacation? Every night I go out up there I have fun and usually end the night at McD's or BK at 6am. Its funny because I think of WPB as kinda boring yet I always have a bitchin time going out up there. Anyways, back to the story...) As I drove up from Miami, I was lobbying hard via text for dinner at Cafe Boulud but I was getting much resistance in favor of Palm Beach Grill. I had never been to either restaurant but Daniel Boulud is one of my favorite chefs, if not my favorite, so I was dying to go. Well, of course I lost that battle and we ended up heading to Palm Beach Grill. The reason being was that the scene was more lively even if the menu was bor-ing.

We were seated and ordered some drinks. I of course chose to drink bourbon because that's just how I roll. The selection was weak so I went with ol' reliable Maker's Mark. We ordered some apps that were pretty good. The steamed artichokes came with a fantastic remoulade for dipping which my cousin liked so much I think he might've placed it at #2 of his top all-time condiments, 2nd to only Tabasco which is in 1st by a long shot. Thats kinda huge. Me? I enjoyed the remoulade, especially considering that I hadn't eaten steamed artichokes in a little while. It took me eating about 3 or 4 of them, leaves and all, before I remembered you're just supposed to work the "meat" out with your teeth. They tasted a helluvalot better after I remembered that! The standout app for me though was the fried oysters. They came plated on the shell of the oyster and plated with an olive relish that provided that salty flavor that I love. Luckily, everyone was so consumed by the artichokes that I was able to dominate the majority of the oysters. We ordered a few bottles of Pinot Noir and Cab for dinner which was a good choice because the bourbons were starting to go down too smoothly. For my main dish, I was torn between the ribeye, filet, and the chicken. The only reason that the chicken was in contention was because my cousin said it was phenomenal. This is a guy who eats red meat nonstop, makes grilled cheeses in bacon fat, and puts Tabasco on everything. For him to say the chicken was the right play was huge and, since I wasn't feeling the ribeye at that moment, I went with it. Boy was that dumb. The flavor of the chicken was great. It had a strong anise flavor to it that I really enjoyed. However, while there were a few moist bites, the majority of the chicken was pretty dry. To make matters worse, my buddy ordered the ribeye and gave me a few slices to try and it was delicious. A perfectly cooked ribeye that was seasoned perfectly and tender to chew. Huge whiff by me.

After dinner, we headed over to Cafe Boulud for cigars and cocktails. I gotta go eat there next time I'm in WPB. The space is cool and they have a nice indoor/outdoor thing goin on there. I know the food will be good too. We enjoyed our smoke and a few bourbons and then headed to Cucina where we always end up, hammered. The night ended a few hours later after many more bourbons and the whole bar belting out "Dont Stop Belivin" by Journey. I remember leaving the bar, I remember getting in the car (not a smart play by our group...shoulda cabbed it). Apparently we went to BK because when I woke up fully clothed, face down on a pullout couch a few hours later there was a BK drink cup next to me on the coffee table. Yeah, yeah, Cucina!

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