Let's talk TEXTURE
Some dishes are great as a result of their TEXTURE. Take the apple tart I had this weekend at Amandine. Three words: OH, MY, GOD!!! First of all, it wasn't even shaped like the typical apple tart. It was tall, over three inches & cylindrical. The apple and cinnamon filling was sublime. It was the TEXTURE that really got me. The top had a hard, crunchy, course sugar topping. The sides of the cylinder were flaky like the best pastry you have ever had. Finally, the apple filling was smooth but not over pureed so that the apples still were the standout. Chowhound that I am, I took a big bite so that I could get equal portions of the top and sides. WOW! My question to fellow hounds is: Name a dish that you love because of it's incredible texture.
UPDATED: I thought this would be obvious but I mean: name a dish, that I can order in Los Angeles, that you love because of it's incredible texture. The chowhound team is on the ball today...
You reminded me of a thing that amazed me because I didn't hate it! This was a giant corn muffin from Smitty's Grill; I knew it was going to be sweet, and many of you know my record as despising sweet cornbread, but this I had to admire: it was not just sweet, it was deliberately, unabashedly, OTT sweet, a blatant dessert! The top was crisp, studded with flaked rock-candy crystals, while the interior was almost custardy but strangely not at all gooey. It was sturdy but light, sweet but savory, a thing of pure artifice but tasting eloquently of corn. I was not tempted to run back for another one, but whenever I rail against sweet cornbread, this is the "Yes, BUT..." tickling the back of my brain.
Raw abalone, geoduck clam, flying fish roe, to name a few, and to stay on topic my pick for any of these would be Urasawa.
Since this is on the Los Angeles board, please try to keep your answers focused on dishes at specific LA area restaurants. If you've got general suggestions for well-textured dishes, it would be fine to start a new thread on the General Topics board.
I am totally with you - the texture can be sometimes even more compelling than the flavor. To keep it to restaurant dishes, here are a few recent successful texture experiences:
abalone sashimi at Otofuko in Gardena - amazing crunch
the live sweet shrimp (still moving) at pacific seafood in redondo
the corn agnolotti at Rustic Canyon - al dente pasta, creamy filling, explosive flavors bring it together
the truffle fries at Chez Melange - perfectly crispy on the outside and soft and smooth on the inside.
The foie gras lollypop at Bazaar - silky center like gelato but with fatty mouthfeel + cotton candy and crunchy coating makes for amazing multii-textured experience