Truffling Toward Ecstasy

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By Deirdre Bourdet

My butterlust is only exceeded by my passion for truffles. Funky, mysterious, and mind-blowingly delicious, a single taste of the real thing will alter your life forever.

Needless to say, I've had La Toque's black truffle dinners in my calendar as soon as the start date was announced, and am now counting down to January 8, 2010 with breathless anticipation.
La Toque Restaurant has been celebrating the black truffle every winter for the last 27 years. From amuse-bouches to mignardises, the object of my desire finds its way into every delectable mouthful. Past years have seen dishes like Truffled Long Meadow Ranch Egg with Toasted Brioche, Columbia River Steelhead and Fresh Black Truffle in a Potato Jacket, 1000 Day Duck and Ricotta Raviolis with Black Truffle, Ballotine of Amish Chicken Breast "en Demi-Deuil" with Truffle under the Skin, Black Truffle Ice Cream, Black Truffle Crème Brûlée, Cowgirl Creamery Red Hawk Ripened With Black Truffle... and the 28th Annual Black Truffle season promises yet more deliciousness. Although the special menus begin Friday, January 8, 2010, they will run nightly through February, or as long as nature permits.

For those in need of greater truffulation, Chef Ken Frank also offers an exclusive three-day Truffle Camp as a total immersion course in ecstasy. Twelve lucky guests will learn and practice the sacred art of truffle cookery with the chef himself, tour and taste farm-fresh vehicles for truffle consumption at Long Meadow Ranch, visit a favorite local winery for a private barrel tasting, savor an all-truffle dinner at La Toque, and be sent home the last morning with truffle omelets in their stomachs and a truffly goodie bag for the road.  The price tag for this fantasy is, as you might expect, not insignificant... as in $1800 per person single occupancy, $3000 per couple...but it includes three nights at the luxurious Westin Verasa as well as wines and gratuities for all five of the meals, plus all of the tours and classes. And of course, those irresistible truffles.

La Toque Restaurant
(in Westin Verasa)
1314 McKinstry Street, Napa 707.257.5157

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