my good friend from college, lopez, was in town a while ago. It has been probably at least a year and half since I saw this cuban motherfucker last in LA. We had an awesome meal at the Ame restaurant in the St. Regis hotel. Like the other premier hotel dinning establishment downtown (ritz dinning room, michael mina at St. francis hotel), this place was really fucking expensive. I think all the appetizers were at least $15, all the entrees were at least $35 (we didn't do the tasting menu, it was sort of a late dinner). We had kumomoto oysters three ways, foie gras terrine with eel salad (talking about some rich shit), and smoked sturgeon with wasabi custard and a bottle of pretty weird (in a good way) rose sparkling from oregon (really the only champagne I can afford on the list).
The risotto I had with braised pork and chantrelle mushroom and white truffle was one of the best dish I had this year in a restaurant. The wagyu beef lopez had was not bad. The bottle of kosta browne pinot we had was delicious. But this extremely ripe and fruit focused pinot really doesn't taste like pinot anymore, it reminded me of a good syrah from washington.
What impressed me the most was the service. it was easily the best restaurant service I have had in the last two years, any where. It was very relaxed, non hotel dinning room like, yet extremely professional and not casual. They easily picked up the fact that we had a lot of shit talking to do and set the pace accordingly. Other than questions on food and wine, we never had to asked for anything, since everything we wanted and needed was right there and then. In a supposedly food crazed town, service of this caliber should be more common place, but that is certainly not the case. Joel (general manager, a real bad ass) had done his job well.
This meal cost me more than a quarter of my paycheck (I think), but spending time with lopez and considering the quality of everything we had, it was a restaurant meal that was actually almost worth the money.