Faced with the prospect of a Tokyo culinary tour comprised of fatty toro, well-marbled kobe, and sinfully decadent desserts, I elected to put myself on a diet and exercise regimen. I wake up, do either a cardio or weight training work-out, have a protein shake for breakfast, a hearty salad for lunch, a protein bar for snack, and some broiled fish and veggies for dinner. The point is to ensure I’m able to fit into my suit for, at the very least, the beginning of my trip to Japan. So when Marty G. suggested we hit Fuel this past weekend, I demurred, imagining myself strolling through Omotesando in elastic-waisted sweats. But Martin presented a sound argument. The last thing I want to do is have my body acclimatize itself to this Spartan diet. I needed to throw my metabolism a curveball – and there was no better bullpen ace than Chef Rob Belcham.
So we went to Fuel and saddled up at the bar where we could watch the kitchen crew in action and annoy them with our inane banter. Seated right next to us was fellow foodie and editor of Scout Magazine Andrew Morrison and CTV news anchor Coleen Christie. They bore witness to our gastronomic excesses.
Now I was going to go with a three-course Chef’s menu – soup, salad, a modest fish dish – only to have my dining companion balk. While Martin didn’t actually come out and call me a punk ass bitch, that was the implication. “I’m doing six courses WITH dessert,”he informed me. Hey, Marty G. may be a champion eater but, compared to me, he’s freaking Nicole Ritchie. So, yeah. Six courses it was.
We started with the amuse-bouche, sautéed lardo (cured pork fat) on a bed of diced Gravenstein apple, a delightful harbinger of what lay ahead.
For our first course, we were served soups. The second they were set down in front of us, I feared I was the butt of some cruel prank. Martin landed the brodo with three plump little marrow meatballs. I got the cauliflower soup. Now, don’t get me wrong. The cauliflower soup was very nice, pureed to silken glory, but the marrow meatballs were crazy fantasy. Yes! Crantastic!
Our second course was the foie gras terrine for two, served with a sweet and sour apricot jam, toasted baguette, and maldon salt. Incredibly smooth and absolutely delicious.
For our third course, a little surf and turf Fuel-style: Seared scallop accompanied by some corned beef tongue served atop a bed of diced pumpkin. The sweetness of the tender scallop contrasted wonderfully with the savory crispness of the tongue.
The fourth course was a delight: stuffed trotter (yep – the part of the pig that trots). A really nice, hearty preparation that reminded me of the cuisine of my hometown of Montreal.
At this point in the meal, Chef Rob asked us how we were doing. Feeling cocky, Martin boldly suggested we up the ante and add an extra course. Rob was more than up to the challenge.
Our fifth course was a ling cod dish that, while very good, was a little like Daniel Baldwin at a family reunion. It’s not that he’s loved any less, just that he ain’t Alex, William, or Stephen.
As good as the preceding dishes were, the sixth course was the hands-down winner of the evening. The beef cap, served medium rare, was the best beef I’ve had outside of Tokyo. Fondy had some last time we visited and she’s been thinking about it ever since. Beyond tender. Beyond tasty. Bender and basty! I think I saw Marty G. shed a lone tear when he popped the last morsel into his mouth.
We finished with dessert: cheesecake with Coronation grapes and brown butter for Martin, and, Fuel’s latest addition, dark chocolate truffle, banana-caramel fitter, and coconut sorbet for me. Martin is a big fan of Coronation grapes and greatly appreciated his dessert. I loved mine and do hereby declare it my favorite Fuel dessert ever!
Well, back in the office today. While Brad and Robert worked on revisions to the first script, the rest of us kept busy in our respective offices surfing the internet, phoning home, and making final preparations for our trip to Tokyo. At a little after 11:00, we convened in the writers’ room and started spinning Alan’s story. We broke for lunch, then resumed the discussion on shipboard justice and the ever-developing interrelations among the crew. Factions, fractions, and surprising revelations. By the time we called it a day, we had beaten out Alan’s story.
Tomorrow = More SGU! My Whispers commentary with director Will Waring! And Schnitzel Day!
Today’s entry is dedicated to birthday boy Johnny E! and a recovering Davidd.
NarellefromAus writes: As it turns out, it was a problem with their equipment. Jelly’s sick, but thankfully not that sick!
Thornyrose writes: “So Mr. M, how is Maximus?”
Answer: He’s come down with the same thing. Now both of them are on meds.
MyNameIsScott writes: “Wish me luck trying to get my tonsils to shrink down and fever to go away… all the while working at a used dvd store full of hicks and idiots.”
Answer: Good luck! Try Beaches. That usually does the trick.
Eugene from Aus writes: “Joe, are you planning to watch any of the soon-to-be-released movies anytime soon or don’t you have the spare time?”
Answer: I prefer watching movies in the comfort of my own home. I’m more than happy to wait for the dvd release.
Eugene from Aus also writes: “Oh yes Joe, another thing, are there going to be more auctions on the Stargate Legacy eBay page, or am I already too late?”
Answer: I believe it will be ongoing for a while.
Majorsal writes: “it hasn’t been stated yet, but did the sg1 movie officially get the green light to be made?”
Jahedur writes: “hi joe love your blog gives great insight into the stargate world. anyway i was watching some oldies…ahh season 1 and i started wondering when did you guys realise that when exiting the stargate having to make the guys all frozen over would be too much…”
Answer: The day a faux frost-covered Richard Dean Anderson stumbled out of the gate and declared “This is going to get real old, real fast.”