Melisse by Muhlyssa
The much anticpated first anniversary celebration was this evening at Melisse and everything was impeccable. The food was amazing, the service attentive without being over done, the setting comfortable and unstuffy.
We decided on doing the tasting menu. They gave us a few little extras, the first was a cold cucumber soup with salmon tartare. My first course was a potato leek soup with an oyster and caviar in floating in the center. The fish course was a striped bass served over some potatos and a creamy sauce (can't remember what exactly but it was amazing) and my meat course was Braised Veal Medallions with a Gratin of Morel Stuffed Rigatoni, Creamed Spinach and The Braising Jus with Yellow Wine, which was the most flavorful veal I have ever had. For dessert I had Spiced Crème Brulé which was a a Trio of Brule Scented with Anise, Cardamon and Peppercorn. It sounds like odd flavors but they were perfect. They gave us a little passion fruit mousse before the dessert course.
My husband started with the Smoked Salmon Pave -- with Cucumber Confit and Marinated Fennel, then had Maine Lobster with Green Asparagus Salad, Chiogga Beets and 100 year old Balsamic and then the Roasted Moscovy Duck Breast with Regier Farms Peaches, Honey Glazed Turnips and Black Peppercorn Jus. For dessert he had a crepe with Mascarpone Mousse and a fresh assortment of berries.
The only thing I didn't love was the coffee. It was french pressed, thus too strong for me (I'm not a big coffee drinker anyway).
We had one of the most perfect meals of my lifetime. Melisse is a true special occasion restaurant.
We ran into some friends there who were having the Chefs Carte Blanche Menu which is about $20 more than the tasting menu and I think has 9 courses instead of the 5 we had. We also added the Fromage Supplement, which was totally unneccesary.
I know Melisse has had it's detractors on this board, but I will not be joining those ranks.
What was the cost for such an indulgence?
When I went I loved the food but we sat in a raised booth so the service was quite clumsy. A person actually fell into the arms of a waiter trying to get out of the booth. If I return I will stay closer to the ground.
re: Mike Kilgore
We don't drink, so no wine and I was pleased that they didn't seem disappointed we weren't having any wine. I was anticipating being looked down upon about that.
We had a perfect table, there are booths around the permimiter that are raised and tables for larger parties in the middle of the restaurant. Our table was towards the back so we had a nice few of the activity in the restaurant.
It was pretty simple in decor, all warm colors (pale yellows and pale greens), shutters cover the windows so you don't hear the street traffic from Wilshire, sort of felt like an elegant french country home.
The service was excellent, but not so in your face, just the right amount of attention.