Thursday, December 16, 2010

Wolvesmouth Underground Dining Experience - The Titles Says It All (Los Angeles)

Wolvesmouth Dinner

Dinner Table at the Wolvesmouth Den

In the past few months, the underground supper club scene has become increasingly popular here in Los Angeles, though this is not a new concept. Prior to my dinner at the Wolves' Den, I was actually familiar with Chef Craig Thornton's cooking (aka Wolvesmouth) as I had another private dinner cooked by him and it was fantastic. Since I was on a Panda hibernation at that time and didn't take any pictures, please read up on that dinner via djjewelz. Let's continue, shall we?

Wolvesmouth DinnerWolvesmouth Dinner

Pre-Dinner Activies

We were all gathered there that particular night for a Birthday celebration for our friends Matt and Remil, the famous Pinoy Panda. Knowing Craig, he'll have something special planned and I was eagerly awaiting this dinner for over a week.

Menu for 11/20/10

Menu for 11/20/10

Now, if you want your menu printed and signed, this might not be the place for you. If you want to be surprised, don't even bother looking at the fridge and just enjoy what's coming. And. Here. We. Go!

celery root soup clams apple

1. celery root soup clams apple

I really enjoyed Craig's take on Clam Chowder. Having the cold apple in the soup was an ingenious idea. It cut down on saltiness of the clams while adding a nice crispy texture to the soup. A fantastic start to the meal!

scallop Korean chili pineapple persimmon basil

2. scallop Korean chili pineapple persimmon basil

Here, we have a nicely seared scallop on top of a spicy pineapple and persimmon "salsa." While normally I'm not a fan of persimmon, I enjoyed the sweet and spicy balance to match with the scallops.

trout brown butter lemon chive

3. trout brown butter lemon chive

One of my favorite dishes of the night, the trout. First of all, I'm glad Craig left the skin on the fish, it adds a nice flavor to the dish. The richness of the brown butter was nicely balance by the acidity of the lemon. The fish was nice and tender, just the way it's meant to be savored.

sweetbread squid black sesame Asian pear

4. sweetbread squid black sesame Asian pear

Ah sweetbread, one of my favorite things to eat! Though I would have probably preferred my sweetbread cook in a more crisp fashion, I loved the bold flavors of the black sesame and the sweetness from the asian pear. All in all, an enjoyable dish.

beet bone marrow creme fraiche dill

5. beet bone marrow creme fraiche dill

I'm no lover of beets, in fact, it's one of the things I dread eating most of the time. Though at the last dinner, Craig was able to combine bleu cheese and beet (2 things I absolutely despise),and make it quite tasty. This time around, the flavors of the creme fraiche and dill were able to mask the flavors of the beets and made it quite palatable. However, I was not able to detect the bone marrow in the creme fraiche. I was hoping for more of a fatty essence from the bone marrow.

lobster pimento cheese crouton chive tomato

6. lobster pimento cheese crouton chive tomato

Pimento cheese and lobster? I would have never thought of this particular combination. The savory, spicy pimento cheese actually meshed fairly well with the sweetness of the lobster. As a matter of fact, I quite enjoyed this particular dish.

rabbit saddle bacon mustard German butterball potatoes cabbage rabbit saddle bacon mustard German butterball potatoes cabbage

7. rabbit saddle bacon mustard German butterball potatoes cabbage

As I may have mentioned in a previous post (Sorry, I'm too lazy to look for it. I think it was Toque in Montreal), I love eating "Thumper." Yes, I'm referencing Bambi. Rabbit, "thumper," or whatever nickname I decide to give it, rabbit is good! Rabbit saddle with bacon is even better. Thanks for putting this on the menu Craig!

celery ice

8. celery ice

Palate cleanser. Tastes like celery. Refreshing. Much needed after 7 courses. OK, I'm ready to rock 'n roll now!

rabbit pot pie glazed vegetables gnocci

9. rabbit pot pie glazed vegetables gnocci

What's better than one rabbit dish? Two rabbit dishes of course. Craig went with a pot pie, and unlike the usual chicken or turkey, we have a rabbit pot pie. It's simple, homey, and good.

squab pickled berries sauerkraut pretzel sauce skin

10. squab pickled berries sauerkraut pretzel sauce skin

Squab, another one of my favorites. Actually, I like most meat, especially ones not often served like the aforementioned squab. The squab, cooked though the sous vide method was cooked extremely tender and juicy. The accompanied pickled berries and sauerkraut gave this dish a nice tart flavor.

passion fruit

11. passion fruit

Another palate cleanser. Passion fruit is something I'm quite familiar with. Tart, slightly sweet, and incredibly tasty. It's something I eat often when I'm back in Taiwan.

lamb fig purée lamb belly mint chanterelle

12. lamb fig purée lamb belly mint chanterelle

The final savory course, the lamb. The lamb itself was also cooked via the sous vide method, and came out to a perfect medium rare. Though some might not appreciate the gamey flavors of the lamb, I find it quite delicious. The lamb belly was a nice fatty contrast to the lamb itself. The fig puree and mint definitely added an important element to the dish.

squash fritter maple shortbread toasted marshmallow panna cotta

13. squash fritter maple shortbread toasted marshmallow panna cotta

I slightly dreaded this course. I don't like fried dough. I don't like doughnuts nor do I care for churros. The only doughnut I like are the doughnuts from Donut Plant in NYC. In this case, squash fritter is served onto of a toasted marshmallow panna cotta. While the panna cotta melted into a liquid base, it did mesh well nicely with the fried squash fritter. In fact, it was quite delicious. For me, I needed that toasted marshmallow base.

butter croissant ice cream nitrous cake nitrous powder

14. butter croissant ice cream nutella cake nitrous powder

Finally, we closed out our meal with a nutella cake with a butter croissant ice cream. Of the two dessert, this was my favorite one. I have to say from the first dinner to this one, Craig knows how to do ice cream. I enjoyed the rich flavors of the ice cream mixing with the nutella cake. I could have taken down at least another plate of this stuff. Delicious!

Now, do you want to eat here? I know you do. Want more details? If you do, follow dimsumpup on twitter or visit here for more information. What should you expect upon dining at Wolvesmouth? Get ready to have a good time, eating between 10-14 courses in a chill, relaxing environment. Craig and crew will take care of the food, music, service. All you really need to bring are your appetite, a nice bottle of wine, and your wallet. Do you need to dress up like those fine dining establishments in NYC? Definitely not. Just come, have a good time, and mingle with the fellow diners. One note, just don't be a dick. Assholes can stay outside!

Final Rating 9 out of 10

Wolvesmouth Underground Dining
Located in the Greater Los Angeles Area
Contact @dimsumpup and join the mailing list for more information


Ravenous Couple said...

hibernation over! it was a great dinner!! Remil will get a kick out of the "famous pinoy panda" plug! haha!

catty said...

OH MY GOD. So need to do this.

Anna A. said...

Nice! I just went to an underground supper club here in Portland on Monday (just blogged it too). They are fun! Glad to see you're back on the blogosophere. We missed you. *hugs*

Vxronica said...

Meeeemories! Welcome back Danny! Way to kick it off.

weezermonkey said...

I'm not an asshole! I want to come! :)

It seems we're always out of town for the dinners. I can't believe my brother has been, and I haven't!

kristen said...

Welcome back! Glad you left hibernation early. Thanks for making me drool.

bagnatic said...

the wabbit sounds divine. i want IN the next time you go!

Pandalicious said...

everything looks so intricate and creative! diggin the squid and celery ice.. altho, not a fan of sweetbread.

yft said...

Wow, I love the hand-written menu. :) Such a special experience -- sad I missed it!

nelehelen said...

i just finished my wolvesden dinner post too and reading yours makes me want to go AGAIN! shit.. can we all go next time?? YUMMMM..

and u don't like beets?? i'll eat your beets for you!

Kung Food Panda said...

Hong: Haha, I'll try to post more, and Remil IS the most famous pinoy panda! LOL

Catty: I hope you'll love it in Feb

Anna: Thanks Anna. These things are fun eh? Happy Holidays!

Veronica: Good times, good times! :)

Weezermonkey: You really need to go, and I can't believe your brother went before you! FAIL! :)

Kung Food Panda said...

Kristen: Thanks, and you need to go ASAP!

Amy: Haha, we shall go, after my NYC trip! :)

Amy Panda: You should check it out. It's good stuff, even the sweetbreads!

Yulree: You missed out! :) Though you made it to Fraiche!

Helen: You plan it, and we'll go!

No beet, sorry, just....not a fan.

Gastronomer said...

I am SO hitting up the Wolve's den in 2011!

A.A. said...

He just served a half-passion fruit, on its own, accompanied? If so that's awesome. I think it should have warranted a comment of some sort ;) Seems to me to be a nod to Alice Waters and her infamous dessert of just a perfect peach.