I had an amazing meal at Red Medicine a few years ago, but you never know what a little time can do to a place, or some no shows.
Red Medicine has recently taken to publicly shaming those that don't show up for their reservations with tweets listing the no shows by name. Humiliating? Perhaps, but if you were someone who couldn't get a reservation that night, you now know exactly who you can blame.
That said, I was in days after the "public outing," and the place was barely half full on a Thursday night, so guess people are thinking twice. It worked in our favor as we got our choice of seats, and chose a booth near the window beside the bar, which gave us privacy, a view and the ability to hear each other speak, which isn't always easy in a spot like this with such a high ceiling.
We ordered a collection of plates, or rather bowls, which totaled 4 cold and 3 hot for 3 people, and this was plenty, even leaving room for 1 shared dessert. You can get a 6 course tasting menu, but it didn't include enough of what I wanted to eat so we went a la carte. There were two notable themes throughout the meal.
2. They like bowls. Not just any bowls, but deep, glass, fish bowls. I don't know if someone just scored with some carnival games, or they were out of plates, or even normal size soup bowls, but we got a lot of bowls, with even more greens.
So was the food good under all that grass and deep within the big bowls? Yes, it was. It was truly inventive with very unique flavor combinations. It was an exploration of tastes and textures and new discoveries as you dug around each corner of the bowl. There was a hearty pork pate hiding out under a blanket of green that brought me back to France for a quick second where I ate pate at most meals. One of our bowls had Santa Barbara uni with cauliflower on one side and pushing the spoon to the other revealed a flavorful, Chinese sausage. We were given instructions when the unappetizing looking log of akashi beef was presented to us. Don't cut across with a fork and knife, but rather pull the meat from the side with the grain and then swirl it through the pistachio, mustard juice, which proved to be an enjoyable and mouth watering process after some trial and error. My only suggestion would be to add a nice little bowl with this plate and fill it with that delicious, tangy sauce that I couldn't get enough of.
It was only fitting we end with a final bowl for dessert, but of course it couldn't be a simple scoop of ice cream in that bowl. No, we went with the birch ice with an almond praline hat that could be crunched and combined with the red currant, orange blossom and jasmine beneath. I'm not sure what was happening here, but there were tons of little balls bursting with unique flavors and it was just good fun and a great way to end the meal.
For you no show-ers, I'll take your seat, your grass clippings and big bowls at Red Medicine any day!