Tuesday, September 26, 2006

San Fran Part 1: Veggie Paradise at Millennium

I love interesting gourmet cuisine. However since I am a vegequarian, I often only get one or two choices off a menu. For our first night in San Francisco my bf wanted to have a nice meal. We came across this vegetarian restaurant on the Internet called Millennium. I was so excited when I looked at the menu. All vegetarian dishes, prepared in interesting ways with creative flavor combinations and beautiful avant garde cuisine presentations. I couldn’t wait to try it.

We arrived at the restaurant a little before our reservations and ordered a couple drinks at the bar. They have an really interesting selection of mixed drinks made with fresh juices. They were out of the tequila for the drink that I wanted but the bartender offered to make me a muddled melon margarita. I was so glad I went with her suggestion. It was made with real cantaloupe which went really well with the tequila. We were eventually settled at our table. I new this was a restaurant I would enjoy went the bread was served with a lentil spread rather than butter. Is one restaurant a good enough reason to move cities?

I was having a little difficulty deciding what to order, since I had so many choices (yay). Everything sounded so good. The two that really stood out to me wer the Yube Roulade (stuffed chard, farro & French lentils, morel, caramelized onion & Porcini reduction, roasted chanterelles, sautéed Broccoli di Cicco with currants & pine-nuts) and the Indian Spiced Pink Bean Ragu (purple Peruvian potatoes, heirloom cauliflower, tomato confit, cumin scented poori flatbread, kachumber-methi salad, coconut mustard seed cream). I eventually went with the lentil dish since it sounded like something I wouldn’t be able to find somewhere else. My bf chose the Chipotle Grilled Portobello & Zucchini Tamale (dried cherries & toasted almonds, sautéed greens, Ancho-carrot "cream", roasted tomatillo salsa, spiced toasted pumpkin seeds).Our meals arrived beautifully presented. Luckily I remembered my camera. My dish was yummy, but could have had a little more flavor. I really enjoyed the mushrooms and sauce but I wish the lentils had figured more prominently. The range of textures was very nice but I felt the dish needed something else to make it a bit more memorable. On the other hand, the tamale was absolutely out of this world. Luckily my bf was sweet enough to share more than a few bites with me. The corn part of the tamale had such a fresh sweet corn flavor (actually it reminded very much of the handmade corn tortillas from Trader Joes). The inside was creamy and flavorful with just enough spice. Both my bf and I thoroughly enjoyed that dish.

While the entrees were definitely not ‘light’ they also weren’t overly heavy like some nice cuisine can be and left us with enough room for dessert. It didn’t take more than a quick glance at the menu for my bf and I decide on the Mocha crème brulee topped with peppermint chocolate chunk ice cream and chocolate espresso cookie. It was like this dish was designed for us. My favorite flavors are coffee and chocolate and my bf favorite ice cream is mint chocolate chip. The dish was super yummy. The ice cream was light and the peppermint flavor was subtle and not overpowering. The mocha part was more like a warm pudding than a crème brulee, but I don’t really care what you call it since it was so tasty. It was kind of like a blob of super thick hot fudge. The flavor wasn’t too rich or too sweet and had nice smokey coffee flavor. It went really well with the minty coolness of the ice cream. Unfortunately I was so distracted with the insane yumminess I forgot to take a picture. I did take one after we finished though hehe.

Overall, Milennium was a truely enjoyable dinning experience. Although I didn't love my entree all the other dishes was amazing. I will definitly be returning on my next trip to San Francisco.


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