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I want to try Truffles but I don't know where

c
Cali Jan 3, 2007 03:44 AM

I want to try this extremely expensive and sought after Fungi but I don't know where. I am a foodie like most of you and I want to at least try it once in my life.

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  1. r
    RicRios RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 03:48 AM

    A disclaimer first: I assume you mean white truffles, or more specifically: Tuber Magnatum Pico.
    That being the case, I'm afraid too late right now, you'll have to wait 'till next season (Nov-Dec 2007).
    By that time post again, C'Hounders will surely point the way to the saint Grial.

    1. julietg RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 03:56 AM

      Melisse has an all-truffle menu. You can smell it when you walk in the door.

      PS- if you are given the option to add white truffles to your pasta or risotto in a restaurant, ask how much it is first. If it's more than $35 it's too much IMO. Order them online, get a truffle shaver, store them in dry rice, and shave them over fresh pasta.

      1. c
        Cali RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 03:57 AM

        What do they taste like? Are they worth all the hype and the price?

        9 Replies
        1. re: Cali
          julietg RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 03:58 AM

          Start with some truffle oil on pasta and scrambled eggs. If you like it, move on up.

          1. re: julietg
            c
            Cali RE: julietg Jan 3, 2007 04:01 AM

            Can I get Truflle Oil at Trader Joe's?

            1. re: Cali
              y
              YumTum RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 04:33 AM

              I'm not sure if TJs carries. I get my truffle oil at Oliver's and
              Co. I love white truffle oil drizzled over pasta with fresh gratted parmesian- as a matter of fact- I had for dinner tonight!

              1. re: Cali
                Bob Brooks RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 11:51 PM

                Trader Joe's carries both white and black truffle oil, but not all the time. When they have it, go for the white, as it will give you a stronger impression of what truffles are all about.

            2. re: Cali
              y
              yum RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 04:18 AM

              tastes kind of like garlic.. the aroma is just amazing. worth it.. providence just had a all truffle tasting menu too..

              1. re: yum
                c
                Cali RE: yum Jan 3, 2007 04:22 AM

                Thanks for your vivid description. I think I will check out where I can find some truffle oil.

                1. re: yum
                  mpken RE: yum Jan 3, 2007 05:14 AM

                  We had lunch at Providence last Friday and the 9 course Market Menu tasting had truffles shaved on a few dishes. Not as decadent as the full truffle tasting menu, but good nonetheless.

                2. re: Cali
                  a
                  AquaW RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 04:01 PM

                  yes, agree with the truffle oil (preferably white truffle oil) suggestion if you've never tasted before -- I agree the aromas (a combo of subdued garlic/onion and really woodsy, earthy mushrooms, in my opinion) is unbelievable.

                  ~AquaW
                  http://la-oc-foodie.blogspot.com

                  1. re: Cali
                    s
                    Sgee RE: Cali Jan 6, 2007 03:49 AM

                    I had my first proper tasting of white truffles shaved over pasta for $80 last month at Vincenti.

                    Honestly didn't think it was worth the hype, not something I would be rushing to order again. Just my opinion.

                  2. m
                    missholmes RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 04:13 AM

                    ive never had white truffles but would love to try them. anywhere that will still have truffles on the menu this weekend?

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: missholmes
                      julietg RE: missholmes Jan 3, 2007 04:19 AM

                      Looks like Melisse stills has them up on their website

                      http://www.melisse.com/dinner.html

                      Any other restaurant, I would say that they just haven't updated their site yet, but I think these guys are pretty web-savy; I get html-filled emails from them monthly.

                    2. russkar RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 04:22 AM

                      Best at the moment are at:
                      VALENTINO (best of 06')
                      SPAGO ***
                      MELISSE
                      PROVIDENCE ***
                      ANGELINI ** (two weeks ago)
                      (been to ***for truffle testing in the last week)

                      1. n
                        NYCnowLA RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 04:29 AM

                        doesn't taste like garlic to me. i don't think there is a worthy comparison. i would get a small bottle of good white truffle oil first to make sure you'll enjoy your investment of a truffle menu. it is good on everything from pizza to mashed potatoes. it really makes the worst of LA pizza bearable!!!

                        1. s
                          Sugar Jones RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 12:54 PM

                          White truffle oil is also available at Surfas.

                          1. b
                            bglicklich RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 02:20 PM

                            Just be aware that truffle oil is to fresh truffles as motor oil is to olive oil. Not a completely fair comparison.

                            Here's another way... go into any restaurant where fresh white truffles are being served and take a deep breath. You'll know in an instant if you have the white truffle gene.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: bglicklich
                              r
                              RicRios RE: bglicklich Jan 3, 2007 02:43 PM

                              Another trick: go into any restaurant where fresh white truffles are being served. Tell the server you want to smell the truffles before ordering. When they bring it to you, lift the plate up to your nose, take a deep sniff, tell them you don't like them (no charge for smelling).

                            2. j
                              Jerome RE: Cali Jan 3, 2007 11:56 PM

                              sorry but I'd say DO NOT GET the oil (sorry for shouting). Some of the oils are artificial and it's not the same thing. The oil is more pungent. It's like artificial durian flavored wafers.
                              I'd say call patina at the walt disney hall. they offer as simple risotto, very mild, on which they grate a nice mess of white truffles (tartufi d'alba). You will taste them clearly. Just go down and order the risotto - split it with someone if price is an issue. have a nice glass of wine. And then go elsewhere for dinner if the price is really an issue, and you will have tried them. They don't taste like garlic to me. They are a very dense earthy slightly meaty tasting tuber. Not much texture, esp when shaved.

                              black truffles are cheaper, and quite good as well, but not quite the same ritualistic ooh and aahing. the dog-hunted italian ones are the white ones - piedmont/piemonte region for the most part. The black truffles that we get here are mostly from perigord and the mountains near lozere in france.

                              1. SauceSupreme RE: Cali Jan 4, 2007 12:54 AM

                                The thing about truffles is that they're biologically designed to turn you on. They're buried deep in the earth, and release pheromones into the air to attrack wandering animals to forage for them, eat them, and distribute them back in the wild via scat.

                                Truffles have an aroma that's often described as sexy, as earthy and as sensual. Imagine the most intense, concentrated and potent mushroom, add a little bit of meatiness, some sweetness and a whole dollop of biological warfare on your senses that evolution has designed to weaken your knees and you've got truffle.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: SauceSupreme
                                  r
                                  RicRios RE: SauceSupreme Jan 4, 2007 02:26 AM

                                  Brillat-Savarin, 21st Century. Bravo!

                                2. j
                                  Jerome RE: Cali Jan 5, 2007 05:54 AM

                                  OK - just went to Tanino's for a snack this evening.
                                  They have a whole white truffle special menu still. You can split a dish - the cheapest white truffle dish is $28. They go up to $70.

                                  If you want, they also have a tortellini in pheasant and BLACK truffle broth. It's $11.

                                  Tanino's is on Westwood blvd in Westwood village.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: Jerome
                                    j
                                    JonInLA RE: Jerome Jan 5, 2007 07:03 PM

                                    On the westside Gorgio Baldi's and Vincenti still Serve White Truffles.

                                    They are $120 a plate a gorgio's $80 at Vincenti...

                                    They do them on Eggs, Risotto or pasta...I would go for the risotto at vincenti at $80 its a steal for the portion size!

                                    1. re: JonInLA
                                      j
                                      Jerome RE: JonInLA Jan 5, 2007 10:45 PM

                                      yes it's a good price. the risotto at Tanino is $70. I don't remember the risotto with white truffle at Patina - the price that is, but it was very mildly cooked - just a bit of butter, no flavor of veal stock to speak of, so it didn't interfere with the freshly shaved tartufi d'alba. And it was enough for three people to split as a first course (primo piatto for those of you.... well you know who you are).

                                  2. a
                                    artxprt RE: Cali Jan 6, 2007 01:36 AM

                                    We were in Florence last year during truffle season and had the most sublime dish....pasta with shaved truffles, tossed with olive oil and parmesan cheese. A little goes a long way. You can shave a sparing amount of truffle and flavor the entire dish quite easily. Good way to go for beginners/budget conscious gourmets.

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