Monday, June 15, 2015

Second Chance

Life, despite all its misgivings, it all about second chances. We embraced this principle as we headed back to Amber, bearing in mind that the first time had been less than stellar.  

Bite-sized Appetizer

Dinner proceeded in the same format - bite-sized appetizer, first course, second course and dessert. Of course, we all know that dessert is the course that is the most important in meal - everything else is secondary.

We started the dinner with a shrimp brochette garnished with mint extracts, which was a mini-explosion of flavors in your mouth. After the awful lunch we'd had earlier on the Chichen Itza tour, it was a treat to our tastebuds.

Next came the bread. I stuck with a basic sesame bread and regular butter, and saved it for my main dish, the pot-au-feu.

I ordered another mocktail, this one called Rose Bay, a blend of tropical fruits and well, more fruits. It was a tad on the sweet side, but still pretty delicious.

Octopus Carpaccio

After experiencing the octopus carpaccio last time, Hubby decided to order it again. I didn't have any this time because I was waiting for my main dish.

Mixed Greens

I got the mixed greens, which was wonderfully presented. The best part was once again the figs on the side.

Pot-au-feu with Palm Heart
For my main, I got the pot-au-feu, a heaping pile of veggies with a heart of palm filled with "fake marrow". The presentation was exquisite - colorful veggies surrounding a statue-like limestone heart of palm. Here's an aerial view:

Pot-au-Feu with Heart of Palm "Fake" Marrow

And that's the unfortunate thing about life and a lot of things - what's on the outside doesn't say much about the inside. The inside of this thing, my dear friends, was a heavy sour cream that filled your palate with nothing but, well, sourness.

So while I managed to finish off the vegetables, which btw were pretty plain and lacked flavor (I almost asked for a bottle of ketchup to go with), I really didn't get to finish the heart of palm. I even gave some away to Hubby, who refused to touch it.

Beef Flank
Turns out he was having trouble finishing his own dish, the beef flank steak with chimichurri, beet puree, grilled eggplant and carrot. Unfortunately his beef flank tanked like his last dish - it was way too tough, as were the vegetables. It was like eating cardboard, chips and all.

So with only the dessert left to salvage the meal, we held our breaths. I ordered the cassis custard while hubby got the pistachio mousse with vanilla sauce.

The pistachio mousse was the right degree of creaminess, but it was too heavy on the pistachio. The result was an interesting mix of heavy (and heavily flavored) cream that made it hard to swallow.

Pistachio Mousse with Vanilla Cream

The only edible thing was the wavy chocolate strip. Here's another look at the culprit in question:

Next and finally came my cassis custard with coconut daquoise, with a side of cranberry compote and mango sorbet.

Cassis Custard with Coconut Daquoise

I didn't even know where to go with this dish, because though the presentation looked like it was deserving of Michelin stars, it was pretty much the apotheosis of creamy disgustingness (if that's even a word, oh apparently it is!)


The problem was that the cassis was heavily infused with the liquid flavor, making it kind of mushy, with a texture similar to con leche cake, while the coconut was basically food coloring + jello. The best part was probably the sorbet, but that melted too quickly for me to enjoy.

At the end of the day, I walked away with the understanding that while you can't have everything go your way, you can at least have a cup of joe to wash away your sorrows.

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