fascinated

On Saturday a friend took me for lunch at Zuni Café – yes, Zuni Café of the roast chicken fame. SF (and indeed America) is a smidgen overwhelming but more on that later. It is a lovely, red-brick wall and wooden floor kind of space with huge windows and a wall of golden and green and other-colour glass liquor bottles which catch the sunlight in a most attractive way. The waitstaff are friendly but not overbearing, which is nice. There’s a a constant hum of conversation. It is most definitely not a café in the usual sense but Zuni Restaurant doesn’t roll off the tongue quite as easily and Zuni Joint sounds like some kind of narcotic.

In any case, you should meet this dessert. Tower-style constructed sweets are nothing particularly new, but I almost never order pudding except on special occasions. Plus, ‘Lillet meringue’ sounded too delightful to pass up. Isn’t it charming? It’s equal parts elegant and frivolous and spilling over with froth and frippery. It looks like a fascinator out of My Fair Lady at the Ascot with a colour scheme from a 1960s fashion spread. Mike also noted that his friend had a collection of hats like this. I would totally wear it.

Here are vinyl-thin discs of meringue sandwiching mascarpone cream with shards of nectarine and pistachio, and a fruity pink syrup of some kind drizzled over. All these tastes and textures: sticky-crackly meringue, the rich billowing cream and tart fruit a counterpoint to that sugariness. Kind of like a deconstructed, elegant Eton mess. So actually not a mess at all – just delicious.

Looking at a photo of it now brings a smile to my mind. It’s not a life-changing dessert in the grand scheme of things, but it made me smile and that’s enough for me.

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This entry was published on August 8, 2016 at 10:17 am and is filed under Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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