Wednesday, December 21, 2011

McCrossen's in Fairmount to Serve a French Grower Champagne & Black Truffle Dinner on Thursday, December 29th

Posted to www.Uwishunu.com on December 21,2011


Since arriving at McCrossen’s in July 2010, Chef Townsend Wentz has slowly seduced his clientele with French-inspired dishes, weaving in elements and techniques from his culinary past at the Fountain and Lacroix at Rittenhouse. He will continue the seduction next Thursday, December 29th with a four-course black truffle dinner that showcases the highly prized delicacy. Each serving will be paired with premier French Grower Champagnes carefully selected by GM and Sommelier Lauren Harris, whose passion for the bubbly is both contagious and intoxicating. 

So, what exactly is a truffle? It is a relative of the mushroom that is typically found around the roots of hardwood trees in late autumn and winter. The truffle’s positively pungent perfume permeates a room while its intense, earthy flavor is synonymous with umami, that elusive and savory fifth taste sense. The black variety, or the PĂ©rigord truffle, will arrive from southwest France and be presented in four unique dishes. 

Course 1: Roasted Sea Scallops with roe, Bordier seaweed butter, truffles
Scallops roasted in the shell, topped with roe and served in a sauce made with Bordier seaweed butter (handcrafted in Normandy), resplendent with citrus undertones and julienned truffles.

Course 2: Coeur de Cochon Pithiviers, with creamed salsify, Perigueux truffles
Rich handmade pork sausage topped with creamed salsify and a layer of thinly sliced truffles, wrapped in a puff pastry shell reminiscent of Pithiviers, the French town known for its tarts.

Course 3: Sauteed foie gras with pickled prunes, sauce foyot, truffles
Luxurious pan-seared Hudson Valley foie gras with prunes pickled in red wine vinegar and port, topped with shaved truffles and served on a pillowy hollandaise folded with the pickling liquid.

Course 4: Demi-Deuil Wild Scottish Pheasant, with potato fondant and truffles
Roasted pheasant prepared in the demi-deuil (half-mourning) style, a classic Lyonnais preparation where sliced truffles are stuffed under the skin, blackening the bird and appearing as a dark, lacy veil worn by French women to funerals. Served with Yukon gold potatoes slowly fried in butter and duck fat until crisp on the outside and creamy on the inside.

Dessert: Newly hired French pastry chef Marc Lecomte will produce an array of petits fours to end the rich meal.

For Wentz, the truffle has always been a lavish luxury, yet its value is verified with every experience. “It is a worthwhile extravagance that everyone deserves at least once a year, or in their lifetime. We are presenting this special meal to celebrate the holidays and a successful year. We wanted to give our guests a high-quality dinner at a reasonable price to thank them for their patronage. I want this to be an unforgettable taste memory for them.” 

The evening promises to be a decadent holiday indulgence. Make your reservations now by phone at 215-854-0923.

French Black Truffle Dinner with Champagne pairings at McCrossen’s
When: Thursday, December 29, 6:30PM
Where: 529 N. 20th St.
Cost: $100, plus tax & gratuity