Upscale Italian Dinner for the holidays-- December 2011

Table set up Chef's 6 course menu Wine/Guests/platting

The wine-all Italian!

Phuc our sommelier extraordinaire brought a variety of Italian wine for the evening.

2 bottles of Castel Giocondo -2004

A magnum bottle of Il Carbonaione -2004

2 bottles of Fanti -2004 Brunello di Montalcino

Close look at the bottle of wine.

Minh brought two bottles of wine: Santa Margherita Pinot grigio 2010

We started the meal with the wine and we moved to red wine.

Between 12 people we managed to drink a total of 7 bottles (Magnum bottle counts as 2 regular bottles) no wonder we were all so upbeat and happy!


The Guests

Huyen, Hanh, and Ki starting the evening with a glass of wine or a gin and tonic cocktail.

Kristie and Kevin. 


Minh pouring some white wine to go with the amuse bouche trio

Ki taking a break between each course.

I guess Hoa had too much fun and barely took pictures of our guests so tonight it is about the food and wine.


Platting- behind the scene

We had a total of 12 adults and 3 kids tonight so it is quite a crowd for a sit down dinner!  Platting is a not that easy for a big group, I have to think ahead, be organized, and time it correctly in order for the food to be hot when it hit the table.

The appetizers are over and all of the guests are sitting down so I am starting to plate the amuse bouche trio.


Checking something on the stove...

Here I am starting to plate the 1st course raw salmon and raw tuna.

Grated ginger in oil and salt are added on top of the raw fish.

Adding the garnish on each plate before it is ready to be served.

All the bowls are lined up and the vegetables are evenly divided.  Crab meat is added and the asparagus vinaigrette is poured.


Here I am separating the homemade Cavatelli so I can put them into a large pot of salted water.

Here is how the dish looks like when it is served.

Brain francobolli are cooked and I am plating them individually with some brown butter.

Ki helping me putting the crispy sage on top of each francobolli.


The last savory dish of the evening: Quail ravioli with roasted shitake mushrooms in basil oil. 

When I have a dinner party I usually hire Myriam so can she help me in the kitchen and also to wash all the dishes.  Let me tell you there are lots and lots of plates,  glasses, pots and pans to wash throughout the course of the evening so it is really nice to have a helper.

Platting the desserts!  Tiramisu and corn crema are made a day ahead so all I need to do is to take them out of the refrigerator.  The zeppole are fried at the last minute and serve piping hot with a coat of sugar!


Until the next Meal.....


Filed as: BBQ/Thanksgiving?Holidays parties



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