The truffle kerfuffle
blog by Ben Tsujimoto • November 02, 2011 @ 10:04am
Now, the average person doesn’t usually drop $195 on a dinner—for most, that’s a healthy portion of a paycheck, a car payment or a few months’ worth of bar tabs. There are exceptions for everything, particularly when it comes to the name “Mike Andrzejewski” and “legit Italian truffles.”
According to Buffalo Spree’s Christa Glennie Seychew, one of the most knowledgeable and passionate foodies in Buffalo, Seabar’s head chef, Andrzejewski, and Bistro Europa chef Steven Gedra will host the twelve-course “Luxury and Excess” dinner at Seabar on Nov. 13. The chef duo has already purchased a large quantity of truffles directly from northern Italy.
Seychew lists the dishes that will be offered as part of the meal:
— Absinthe cocktails & truffled croustade
— Carpaccio of kobe beef, truffle crisps
— Nantucket bay scallops, truffle puree
— Truffle bread pudding, langoustine cream
— Truffled bomba rice en pappillotte
— Egg raviolo in truffled brodo
— Black tie scallops “Daniel Boulud”
— Pancakes & truffles
— Dover sole with truffle custard
— Alaskan crab and truffle
— Truffled quail and foie gras roulade
— Blanquette of veal, truffle cream
— Truffle roast suckling pig porchetta
Dessert by Ellen Gedra
— followed by port and frozen truffle white chocolate air
Now, as more of a proletarian foodie, I’m entirely unfamiliar with most of these dishes (although I’m really intrigued by the frozen truffle white chocolate air—how does one freeze air, then consume it? Will the white chocolate truffle air float into my lungs and cloak them in fungi glory?). Knowing the reputations of the two chefs and having eaten at both of their restaurants, I am willing to wager this has “meal of a lifetime” potential.
Truffles, while appearing rather mundane to the eye, are an unquestioned delicacy; according to almagourmet.com, a one ounce white truffle imported from Italy runs for $195. That’s one ounce! Summer black truffles, which are much more prevalent, run for $75 for four ounces. Now that’s modest!
The legend that truffles grow wherever lightning strikes—frankly, that’s a pretty bad-ass legend—is unfortunately not true. Here’s a delightful tidbit from lifeinitaly.com:
“The truffles harvesters are a secretive lot that keep their special truffle groves to themselves, often taking long winding paths at night or in the early morning fog to confuse those that would try to follow.”
Reap the benefits of these shrouded morning walkers and the adventurous nature of our top local chefs on Nov. 13.