I admit having a crush on Anthony Bourdain that has lasted for years and has no chance of ceasing anytime soon.
Growing up a good girl, there is something about a bad-ass chef that is extremely attractive. Though I am glad he has mellowed out over the years, he still is a wonderful chef with a wonderful voice in the culinary world. No Reservations is one of my favorite shows, and I enjoy his writing style in A Cook's Tour.
On Friday evening I met my dear cousin for dinner at Les Halles. It was the first time for the both of us at a Bourdain restaurant, and a long overdue dinner for us both together! We both stared out with glasses of red wine - a must on a cold winter's night at a brasserie! She had a Cote De Rhone and I had a lovely Malbec.
Although there were so many wonderful French brasserie appetizers on the menu (escargot, onion soup), we decided to go against the rules (Bourdain would be proud) and split a plate of macaroni and cheese with serrano ham as our first course. As you can see from above, it came right out of the oven with a crisp crust of cheese on top. Below was a melted blend of amazing cheeses and ham. I would say it actually is one of the best macaroni and cheeses I have had, and gives Artisinal's a run for its money. As much as I love American macaroni and cheese with cheddar, there is nothing like this French style with gruyere.
The main courses were steak, of course! They were so good I forgot about taking photos. I was too lost in the moment of beef bliss to even think about pulling out my camera.
Again, we were rebels and did not order the Steak Frites, the classic dish of the restaurant. My cousin had a filet mignon with bernaise sauce and I had a skirt steak with blue cheese sauce. I was confused by the sauces being there at all - the cuts of steak were tops and did not need any extra flavoring. Having a sense of this, we both ordered our sauces on the side. Instead, we used them as a nice accent to mix into our mashed potatoes (which were thick,gooey, and quite good).
I had profiteroles for dessert with a chocolate sauce that was drinkable on its own, and my cousin had a chocolate mousse that was perfectly textured and rich.
Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles is a brasserie I highly recommend.