18 April 2017
I had a long 2-day journey that culminated in dinner in Frankfurt. Left home on Easter Monday morning for LGA, and spent the day zipping through Queens and Long Island in a rental car that I thought was gonna fall into pieces Blues-Brothers-Mobile-style every time it hit one of NYC outer boroughs’ ubiquitous potholes…
I got it eventually to JFK somehow in one piece. Then a rather peaceful but painful red-eye where I didn’t eat nor drink anything but my small bottle of water and zoned out by listening to music and keeping my eyes shut. No sleep, but I didn’t feel as bad as I usually do after shorter-than-scheduled red-eyes to Europe.
Got to Frankfurt, and thank goodness my room at one of the airport hotels was already ready by 1030am…so thankful for those moments. Decided to keep myself awake and I headed out for a long day hiking around Frankfurt’s historic Hauptfriedhof. Spent a few hours wandering around many historic and beautiful graves, anything from Dr Alzheimer’s to a Confederate general’s aristocratic family tomb.
I was knackered and headed back to the airport to take a much-needed shower. Ended up soaking in the tub to soothe my painful legs, joints, back, etc… Then got myself ready and headed into town next to the historic cathedral for tonight’s dinner at Seven Swans.
A cool little place, I started at the ground floor bar — which you know took cocktails seriously. I enjoyed one (a good boulevardier) before I went up the lift — to have it open INSIDE the kitchen. One of the fun bits of this place, as you then have to walk down half a floor to the dining room. Cute little place.
The tasting menu presented itself and I was pretty happy with it. Happily went with the pairing. I was hungry, as the only food I’ve had since Easter (it’s Tuesday night) was a bad burger at JFK. Soon a quick item followed, a nice clam broth.
This was followed by a snack featuring calf’s head with a tasty “green sauce” made of 7 herbs. They do like their green herbs here. Tasty start. With a nice pour we began with the vegetable and cream cheese dish.
Love the baby vegetables here, wonderful earthy flavours. They seem especially proud of their vegetables here, and they should be. Excellent peas too, and the goat cream cheese was very delicious. A good start!
After a little while the place was full. I had a nice little alcove table, so that was a nice way to both be in the room and to hide from the other 2-tops. Next up was char.
Excellent stuff, fabulous radish and beans. The char was split in several preps, including a tartar and a very low temp smoked method, all under the good piece you can barely see. Excellent variety! I’m impressed with this place!
Another good pour and we move onto a surprise course — parsnip soup.
A bit meh, as it is basically parsnip soup. But one thing that’s getting to me is the pace. It’s very, very slow, as at this point it’s been over 2 hours already since I started on my cocktail. But it’s felt less dragged on, because they time the wine pourings very smartly — unlike other long tasting dinners where they leave you high and dry for 20 minutes on between courses. Here they pour big and early.
The next dish features the “wooly” pork (mangalica) and malt — and lol they said don’t Google it before you eat it because it’s rather cute. Lol.
But this was a wonder of a dish. The bun and pulled pork was excellent, with just a bit of acid to make it more interesting with the bun. But that rib…oh my was it good. The best rib I’ve had in years, and that includes some amazing BBQ places in the US. This is awesome… I love mangalica in any shape or form, but this was done so nicely…
I was really enjoying this dinner despite the pace, as the kitchen is fabulous and service friendly and excellent. Then we moved to the last savoury dish, the wild duck.
Wow, this was also fabulous. I was told this is the first part, which is a mince in its own marrow — plus marrow on top of it (as you can see). Absolutely intense and beautiful stuff. Wow… Then part two, the breast.
Fabulous again, lovely cooking of a beautiful piece of wild fowl. They told me the hunter they got this from is one of their reliable guys just about an hour outside of town. Apparently one of the diners got lucky and found a shot. But the dumpling was filled with marrow as well, and the sauce was also intense and just mind-blowing. Wow… If this 2-parter isn’t one of the dish of the year, it may be that this entire meal could be one of the best of 2017!
After a little rest a pre-dessert of basil flowers and berry sorbet. Then the full dessert, based on hazelnut and honey.
Not bad, oddly acidic at first but it somehow quickly balances itself out in your mouth. Good stuff.
Now I really enjoyed that meal! I took a coffee and usually I’d do an after-dinner drink, but I decided to shift to the cocktail bar again so I settled up and thanked the excellent team who took care of me. Amazing kitchen.
I then had a not-so-smart night in the bar until it closed, doing way, way too many drinks. For someone lacking sleep this was not smart at all, considering I had a morning flight to Prague…
I’m gonna pay for it badly tomorrow…but damn, this restaurant is FANTASTIC!