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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Many of you will not really relate to this place, but it is definitely an interesting place for me.

I have, for many years now, run in gourmet circles. Probably 90% of our friends are wine snobs, and we frequent fine restaurants regularly.

For the past 10 years or so, our favorite French Restaurant, L'Etoile, has held specialty wine dinners a few times per year. These are events that we NEVER miss. I have memories of some of the best meals that I have ever consumed paired with amazing wines and finished off with desserts that take your breat away from these events. I have always made it a point to attend these without fail, and they are great times with my dear friends and my husband.

Today I received an invitation to one of L'Etoile's famous wine dinners:

Gourmet Dinner wtih Harold Wood, the highly respected epicurean.

The menu is 6 courses with six different wines.

1) Duck Foie Gras Pressed with Apples and paired with a Perrier Jouet Rose Champagne

2)Veloute of Maine Lobster, Infusion of Porcini Mushrooms & Corriander paired with a Montmains 1999 Chablis Premier Cru

3) Fillet of Yellow Edge Grouper, Barigoule of Glazed Vegetables, Jus of Seafood & Artichokes paired with a Grenovilles 1999 Chablis Grand Cru

4) Partridge Breasts, Galette of Celery, Foie Gra, Pommes Maxim's, Fruit Gastric paired with a Domaine Billard Gonnet 1999 Pommard Rugiens Premier Cru

5) Chaurce Cheese, Plum with Cloves Scented Oil

6) Pinapple Ravioli with a Trio of Exotic Fruits, Verjus Sorbet, Coulis "Arc En Cief" paired with a Close Labere 1998 Sauternes

I am very lucky because I have plans to be down at South Padre Island during this dinner, but I can't imagine what I would have done, had I been here at home. I see how much this is my old life, and I would be very sad to miss out on such an occassion with my husband and my good friends. However, I know without any second thoughts that I simply could NOT consume those foods. I used to love Foie Gras, and Lobster was one of my most favorites.

I guess that I would have called the restaurant and asked them to prepare something for me, even if it wasn't quite up to main menu. However, it is a really big eye opener for me that this will ALWAYS be an issue from this point on.

WOW.

Again, I am SO glad that I have already purchased the plane tickets and hotel room. I shudder to think what I would have done. It is bound to come up again, and is definitely something that I will have to consider long and hard.
 

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"Duck Foie Gras Pressed"

Ugh! the mere thought of how that's made makes me sick ... more ducks ( or whatever bird they use) :-( ... stuck in little boxes force fed ..... blah

I'm sure any good chef would not mind the challenge of a purely vegan meal (I hope they take requests at short notice)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I know. Foie Gras is a nightmare. Perhaps one of the worst examples of animal cruelty for cuisine.

I am very thankful that I won't be around.

I am going to call them and as them if they could prepare something for me at the NEXT wine dinner. We know the owners and the chef. If they can't, well......?
 

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sheesh. that's awfully swank sounding. i feel a little funny with my kitchen being so bare right now, knowing people out there are eating meals like this.

i understand that you are concerned with missing out on the social aspect of this, though. i don't know what to say. perhaps...just perhaps...you can convince your friends and husband to have an alternate wine-tasting event with vegetarian foods? everyone brings a specific bottle of wine and a specific dish to go with it? we always invite people over for a potluck before anyone can plan to invite us out to a steakhouse or whatever...

yeah, i know. i'm so not-posh.
 

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Wasn´t there a French chef, who proposed a diet containing foie gras and chocolate? I think it followed Atkins, but wanted to make it into gourmet circles.
 

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"6) Pinapple Ravioli with a Trio of Exotic Fruits, Verjus Sorbet, Coulis "Arc En Cief" paired with a Close Labere 1998 Sauternes"

What's wrong with this one? Or am I being naive in thinking the ravioli filling is pineapple...?
 

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As you'll see at the In The News Forum ("Nouveau Vegan"), there are many fantastic chefs now including gourmet vegan dishes in their menus, and even doing wine tastings, prix fixe vegan menus, and the like. Give it a read. Maybe something like it is happening within traveling distance to you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
There are a few upscale restaurants in Austin. I think that my husband has to go up there today, and I'll ask him to get some info.

I know that it sounds swanky, but this is my life. The dessert does sound OK. I guess I could always go in and just eat dessert and wine!

I'm going to NYC the fall with my Mom (we go on a trip each year), and we are both looking forward to eating at some of the finer Veg*n and raw restaurants.

The whole thing is just so strange. 6 months ago I would have been miserable that I wouldn't be in town for this dinner, and now it is a relief. *sigh*
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by EquiPro

Many of you will not really relate to this place, but it is definitely an interesting place for me.

I have, for many years now, run in gourmet circles. Probably 90% of our friends are wine snobs, and we frequent fine restaurants regularly.
Apologies for being posh are utterly unneccessary. Like the rest of us, you will be the vegan-thorn-in-their-side when you do attend such events. And I'm sure you will handle it wonderfully.

This is a board about veg*ns; doesn't matter if you're giving up tuna casserole or caviar.

My 2 cents.

Quote:
originally posted by epski

As you'll see at the In The News Forum ("Nouveau Vegan"), there are many fantastic chefs now including gourmet vegan dishes in their menus, and even doing wine tastings, prix fixe vegan menus, and the like. Give it a read. Maybe something like it is happening within traveling distance to you!
Right on. Veganism is an issue-with-a-solution at every "level."
 

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i am sorry if i came across as disapproving. it shouldn't surprise me that so many people live in such extreme luxury, but for some reason, it still does, every time i read about it. of course with the way our society is set up, there are no apologies neccessary from the rich, to the poor. if i really wanted to, i could probably work my ass off and make a lot of money and frequent these places, and events, too.

i hope that you find a solution that works for both you, and your friends and loved ones, equipro. you should be proud of yourself for sticking to your guns in the face of social embarassement.
 

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Heh, where I'm from gourmet is buying wine that doesn't come in a box, and serving that doesn't involve the word "helper".
 

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me too, tame. except we don't even have the money buy wine-in-a-box anymore. we have to make it ourselves. not counting the amount of time it takes to do the brewing, our wine works out to a cool $2 or $3 CDN, a bottle.

and it tastes like it, too.
 

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"Heh, where I'm from gourmet is buying wine that doesn't come in a box, and serving that doesn't involve the word "helper"."

----------------

LOL

Apparently you never heard of "Fricassée de Champignons des Bois"- helper
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks, SunnyK. Just FYI - I have worked very hard for what we have. We don't live in a fancy house - just a nice one. We don't have brand new cars (Yes - we have a Mercedes - new in 1991 and with 220,000 miles on it - I hope to put on 500,00 before it collapses), just decent used cars that are paid off. I guess you would call us upper middle class.

I have lived through times when I counted the change to buy lunch - not in the so distant past - and I wouldn't be shocked, horrified or dismayed if I someday found myself there again. I accept and am grateful for each new day and different experience - at least this is something at which I work always.

However, travel and food have always been a big thing for us. This is truly a new place for me, and I am not sure how I am going to handle it. One of our really good friends gave me crap when I went Vegan, but since then have gone out of they're way to prepare delicious Vegan food when we go over to their house. Some of my other friends, who aren't as well off, have eaten here and have been really impressed by how much they like much of the food that I eat.

I do have to say that I miss gourmet meals, and this is definitely something on which I am going to have to work in order to find a new path.

Just remember my feeling about living in the relative. To some I am rich, to others I am poor. None of that really matters, does it? I still struggle with the same issues as all do, rich or poor, happy or sad, young or old.
 

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I have lived at nearly all parts of the wealth/poverty spectrum ... that's why I see it as a non-issue.



Edit to say: I mean "American-style poverty," which really isn't poverty at all. I have never looked in waste cans for food; I have observed many who did just that.

Sorry so off-topic!!
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by sunnyk

I have lived at nearly all parts of the wealth/poverty spectrum ... that's why I see it as a non-issue.

well, not entirely. it's an issue for you when someone spends millions of dollars on an engagement ring. right?
 

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Hehe, absolutely! That's why it's only "nearly" all parts! But really, that needs to be revised: I've never been at the billionaires' level, nor that of the poorest of the poor. Maybe it would only be correct to say that I've experienced a bit more "economic mobility" than most -- but all within the range of being adequately fed.

And before I get any sh*t (love ya guys, but still), my "mobility" is not exactly a happy story. Bleh. Double bleh.

 

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Where I'm from, fine wine includes everything besides Boones Farm, and many here would argue that Boones farm is indeed a fine wine.
 

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I had a discussion with the cook at my work just this morning about Fois Gras, he said the farmers today do not force feed, but rather they sort of trick the birds by turning the lights on in the middle of the night, so the birds think it is daytime and start eating, which causes the enlarged and fattened liver. When I asked about force feeding with a pipe shoved down their throat, he said that practice is severly outdaterd, does anyone know the answer, is this true or not?

I think its disgusting and cruel either way, but I would like to have my facts straight.
 
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