Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Louro: Uni Dinner

Back way back when I saw an ad for an uni focused dinner hosted by Louro in conjunction with Underground Eats. At $93 per person, I thought it was reasonable since uni is a very expensive ingredient. I think it's more about demand over supply but that's a whole other type of blog post that you'll probably never find here. Anyway, I purchased tickets for both Mr. M&P and I. When we arrived that night, we unexpectedly bumped into TT and CT as well. I should have known they would also participate since they are uni fans as well. After a bit of chatting, I found out that they purchased their tickets at $85 per person without going through Underground Eats. I thought that company sold only exclusive tickets to events. Now I know. And now they're defunct. Money aside, it was time to eat.
Unfortunately we weren't able to sit next to TT and CT. They have given everyone specified seats. Too bad. Anyway, the first course was an amuse bouche of uni, truffle oil, and grapefruit. The truffle flavor overwhelmed everything. The delicate flavor was the uni was masked. Even the strong citrus and bitter flavor of the grapefruit was hardly detectable.

Next course was fluke tartare, uni foam, shiso, and tempura mizuna. The fluke tartare was hardly noticeable while the uni foam was more like a cream/aioli since it was dense and creamy. I didn't know where the shiso was but the tempura mizuna was really good. Freshly fried and crispy. Unfortunately, the uni wasn't the star of the dish again.
The third couse was an uni chawanmushi (Japanese egg custard) with bacon marmalade, pickled blueberry, and crostini. This was a much better dish but my custard came cold. Chawanmushi is best eaten piping hot from the steamer. So this fell a bit flat on me. The uni, however, stood up to the other flavors of the dish including the bacon marmalade. The whole dish was sweet, tart, and briny. A weird combination but not off putting. I wouldn't say it worked really well together but it was fine.
Next up was the uni soup with uni dumplings and uni butter. Yes triple uni. The soup was really creamy almost like a bisque. It tasted slightly of a seafood-esque bisque but it wasn't uniquely an uni flavor.
And the dumplings were dense little nuggets of dough without much uni flavor. Again, a miss on the uni being the star even though it was listed three times as an ingredient. See a pattern here? I also wanted to mention that the portion of this soup was really big. When something is this rich, personally, I think the portions should be adjusted accordingly.
The last savory dish of the night was the milk fed porchetta with uni pudding, roasted mushroom, and potatoes. The porchetta was very salty. So much so that I didn't finish it. Also, the skin was not crispy at all. I could tell that the dish just sat there. The uni pudding was, once again, hidden behind all the other ingredients. I could identify it by color since I could not taste it whatsoever. The mushrooms and potatoes were just meh. Nothing was special about this dish at all.
The last and final dish of the night, which surprisingly was also my favorite, was the dessert. They served a drop biscuit with preserved peach and nectarines, and vanilla ice cream. The sweetness was slightly subdued by the biscuit which was light and buttery. The fruit helped balance out the sugar. And the vanilla ice cream added the right tough of creaminess to the whole thing.
Overall, I didn't enjoy my special uni dinner at Louro. I think the dishes were overthought and uni wasn't necessarily showcased as the star. Honestly, I don't think I would go back for this kind of meal there. It just didn't do it for me. One thing to note is that it was BYOB which saves a ton of money. It was something that we anticipated but forgot about until it was too late. Sigh, that was our own damn fault.

Louro
142 W 10th Street
New York, NY 10014
(212) 206-0606
louronyc.com

1 comment:

  1. I've been meaning to try out this dinner! Sorry to see it wasn't as good as you hoped :( The dishes are definitely nicely plated though!

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