Thursday, January 22, 2009

San Diego Restaurant Week - Part Two

Miranda decided that we would bookend San Diego Restaurant Week and so our second restaurant visit came on the last day of the week long event, Friday January 16th, at Mille Fleur. This is a restaurant we had wanted to sample for some time because it has been described in glowing terms from coast to coast. So we braved the traffic disaster that is described as the 5/805 merge and then wound our way via Del Mar Heights Road, Via De La Valle, Via De Santa Fe to Paseo Delicias. It you are thinking that is a bit of trek to find food you are correct but it beats traveling further north on the I-5 during the evening rush hour. Mille Fleur is in Rancho Santa Fe, a rather exclusive enclave of San Diego County where homes fetch multiples of seven figures. In fact the median price of a home rose 2.3% in 2008 to $2,430,000! So when there is a chance to mingle with the rich and famous over a 3-course meal for $40 its simply not polite to say no!

Mille Fleur
I love polished wood and this place has plenty. The service is also polished, although Miranda was convinced that out waiter/sommelier was out of the French castle scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail. I actually thought he looked like Manuel of Fawlty Towers but he was far from disorganized or confused, although he may have been a little Spanish. We settled on a mix of French and Spanish. Whether he was Basque or not he was attentive and expert in opening the bottle of 2006 Lagier Meredith Syrah (Mt Veeder, California) that I have extracted from the cellar for our meal.

Each of the three courses had three choices or you could, for quite a reasonable price, select from six additional courses. We stayed with the fixed menu. I started with the Assorted mushroom and truffle risotto, which came with arugula pesto, watercress and pea tendrils and then had the Trio of Colorado Lamb:leg,chop and sausage with flageolets beans and savoy cabbage as my main course. Miranda started with the Leek and potato soup with smoked salmon, asparagus confetti, horseradish and dill followed by the Black pepper "onglet" hanger steak accompanied by gruyere spaetzle, and caramelised onions. We both had the Warm apple-brioche pudding with currants, cinnamun, rhum sauce, ice cream for dessert.

The food was something special, especially my main meal. I’m originally Australian which means that I rarely go further down the menu than Rack of Lamb. The reason is that the meat is often sourced from either Australian or New Zealand and I’m at home with that. But the Colorado lamb was mouthwatering and perfect with Lagier Meredith Syrah which was more typical of the elegant style of Aussie Shiraz than the full blooded styles that cross the Pacific to USA wine shops.

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