Sunday, November 22, 2009
Thanks to Ethan from Urban Spoon, I got an invitation from Allison Wagner of PR Consulting to attend the Grand Opening Party for Chef Thomas Keller's restaurant, Bouchon Bistro, in Beverly Hills last week. Also in attendance were quite a few fellow bloggers and there was even quite a bit of star gazing to be done with Pierce Brosnan, Julia Louis-Dreyfuss and Larry King who were also on the scene. Click here to see all the celebrity photos for this event.
This Private Grand Opening Party was definitely a hot ticket, so for those of you who weren't lucky enough to get an invitation, I hope that you'll be able to live virtually through my experience via the photos I took of what turned out to be quite a noshing evening. Of course, the party started by walking through the Bouchon Bistro entrance, which was lit up red lights. See the photo lead to this story. Once inside, walk past the reception area and walk up a few flights of stairs to get to the 2nd floor. An elevator is also available for those who need one.
At the top of the stairs was a small reception area where glasses of champagne were freely being served, but what caught my eye was a large yellow spherical ice sculpture which was in a smaller room towards the back of the reception area. Of course, I had to investigate and lo and behold, I hit the caviar station and let me tell you, those caviar servings were more than generous.
It was hard to tear myself away from all that caviar and just as hard not to sneak one of those caviar tins into my purse, but somehow I prevailed and walked down this long hallway where there was wine storage area to the right of me past the bar and into the main dining room area.
Back to back were the Cured Meats, Pickled Veggies and Olives Station and the Cheese Station. My Filipino palate that loves sour flavors made a beeline for the thinly sliced prosciuitto and the olives first. After I finished off my little plate, I decided to hold off on cheese and instead, I sauntered over to the Raw Bar where oysters were being shucked and being served next to cold shrimp and mussels. One (or two) of each and I was now prepared for cheese.
The cheese selection was wonderful and plentiful. Being a Cheese Head, it was hard not to get a sample of each, but I had heard that there were also hors d'oeuvres being served in the kitchen, so I limited my choices. What I did have was pretty good and even more so, because a couple of them were paired with other foods.
Before I headed to the kitchen, I took a peek at one of their private dining rooms and took a couple of crowd shots.
The kitchen was long, narrow and there was food coming from both sides. It took me 2 passes but I managed to sample the butternut squash soup, the pork belly and arugula sandwich, the codfish fritter and a couple of other things.
By this time, I was ready for something sweet and I found it in the Dessert Station which was set up in another kitchen. I was already quite full, so although I would have loved to try each and every one of them, I limited myself to a chocolate macaroon, the fruit tart and one marshmallow-type tart.
My last stop for the evening was the Bakery. There was actual bread being baked when I walked in and the room smelled so good. On a long table, against the wall, were all these different types of bread stacked up like a pyramid. Apparently, they were all baked that day. While there, the Baker gave a lesson to one of the guests on how to prep the dough before it would be popped into the oven. As we walked out, all guests were given bread to take home.
It was definitely a fun evening of food and people watching, plus the nice gift bag we were all given was a nice treat. This was actually my first time experiencing any of Chef Keller's food and I'm definitely looking forward to a full sit down meal and getting the whole experience. Thanks again to Urban Spoon and PR Consulting. I definitely appreciated the chance to get a preview of what I know will be a Beverly Hills hot spot.
Click here to see all the photos!
235 N Canon Dr
Beverly Hills, CA 90210