Foodie Craze Ends
Reconstructed dishes returning to the tableMay 24th, 2010 | By Coco Cabrera | Category: Featured
Food writers and restaurant critics are asserting that the culinary fad for “deconstructed” dishes may finally have reached it’s apogee with Chef Gerard Petite’s $145 “CC”, a deconstructed hot-dog on the menu at Manhattan’s “Fou”.
The “hot dog” has been broken into its component parts on the plate. “Nostrils and anus are perhaps best ground into a very fine paste and shoved into some sort of casing” says restaurant critic Denise Sylvan, “as distinct elements, they lack appeal. The mouth-feel of anus, too, certainly not what one expects in an entree at that price point.”
Petite’s admirers in foodie circles disagree. In a post on the influential blog, “Gob”, Kevin Peters raved about the dish.
“The night I had it there were notes in the lung and that little bit of flesh just below the ear that were too subtle to pick out of the admixture one finds in fine ground sausage such as a Frankfurter.”
The dish’s most dramatic components are refuse shoveled from the slaughter-house floor and presented unadorned, and various chemicals, primarily sodium nitrate, that are served in their pure form.
“There was a little rail of MSG on Duval’s (Mark Duval, Chef of Tribeca’s “Ortolon”) that one snorted,” said Sylvan. “That was a new and terrific head rush, but I found the servings of preservative chemicals in the “CC” too small to have much of any impact.”
The full tasting menu at “Fou” also features a salad of raw potato and industrial fat, a Pepsi consommé and a punch in the head. Petite is said to have spent years deconstructing salads only to realize that they were already essentially broken into their component parts. Experiments where green salads were then first “constructed” through blending and cooking and then disassembled and “reanimated with pumps and electric current” were reported to be failures. “Also soups,” said a sous chef at Fou who wished to remain anonymous,”the bowl of hot water on one side and the rest on a plate on the other … it didn’t work. Reconstructing foams was too much to even contemplate.” Owing to the use of particle accelerators and cyclotrons in Petite’s kitchen his cuisine has been dubbed “sub-atomic gastronomy”.
The name of the deconstructed dish, “CC” is believed to either come from the French “Chien Chaud” or from the unit of measurement of sodium nitrate.