Last night, I went to a wedding reception (Congratulations Claudia and Brett!) at the Mandarin Oriental. The hotel itself is a modern marvel, but the real star of the show, besides the bride of course, was the cuisine. A generous cocktail hour tantalized guests with tiny plates to delight the palate but not over fill the stomach. Chefs elegantly plated-- or spooned, I should -- a thin slice of perfectly seasoned rare lamb on a small dollop of mashed potatoes topped with daikon radish sprouts on a Chinese soup spoon. The meat melted in your mouth and the mashed potatoes were a surprising and pleasant finish. Waiters also passes around trays of chicken satay with a curry sauce and thick tortilla chips with a slice of lobster and tomato. I missed a cream cheese filled date, but that couldn't be more elegant-looking.
Excellent wine accompanied our dinner in the ballroom and the waiters made sure the glasses were never less than half full. Served in a martini glass, a lobster cocktail/ceviche with heirloom tomatoes and avocado provided a seasonal touch to the dinner. An heirloom tomato salad with asparagus and fancy sprouts and balsamic vinaigrette followed, and finally the main course: a perfectly seasoned breast and leg of chicken, garlic scented potatoes, steamed carrots and crispy fries to garnish. The sauce flavoring the chicken hearkens back to the Mandarin's oriental roots and was so tasty, a guest at our table asked for more on the side.
The only low note in the dinner came from the cake. A trio of mango, raspberry, and kiwi sauces couldn't save the bland and floury texture, but the Romanico chocolate favors more than made up for it with their decadence.