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PaperCity_Houston_June 2021

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Clockwise from top left: Staircase in the century-old La Colombe d'Or hotel. Vadouvan curry carrots. Bar No. 3 at Tonight & Tomorrow. French Dispatch cocktail. challenge. Wicks' concise, tightly edited dinner menu features dishes old and new, differentiated by golden print (which designates the European/Continental classics of yesterday) and dark blue ink for the new, modern dishes. Start with a crafted cocktail like the Steel Magnolia, a frothy sweet-and-sour concoction of vodka, lemon, and jasmine tea, its foamy head dusted with matcha tea powder ($14). Or sip a glass of wine — bottles from France dominate the list, with a few California, Spain, and Chile labels. Old favorite apps, including French onion soup ($10) and crab ravigote ($23), make an appearance alongside new ones, such as Vadouvan curry carrots: a half-dozen lengthy yellow and orange carrots that appear just plucked from the garden, roasted then placed atop cool, rich labneh, dressed with pesto made with the carrots' green tops ($13). I was drawn to the kale salad with candied walnuts, Bosc pear, and puffed quinoa in walnut champagne vinaigrette ($14), but our knowing waiter urged us not to overlook the Caesar ($14). This version has the classic dressing ingredients — anchovy, parmesan cheese — but I didn't expect the depth of flavor derived from the egg yolks, which are cured for four days in salt and sugar, then dehydrated and shaved over tender baby leaf and frisée greens. Amazing. Moving on to the entrees, I tried the brick half chicken: two pieces of bone-in, skin-on chicken pan- roasted then placed under a "brick" and sautéed to crisp its succulent skin, served atop baby roasted potatoes and a salsa verde paste, topped with fines herbes salad, and finished with a squeeze of fresh lemon ($42). The red snapper dish plays with opposing temperatures, hot and cold, with a flavor profile far from the Continent. The Thai-inspired entree is composed of a pan-seared snapper filet over vermicelli rice noodles, dressed in an alluring sorghum-lime vinaigrette and tossed with candied peanuts, fresh red chili, cilantro, and basil. I loved the desserts that poke fun at the classics, such as the chocolate flourless cake served à la mode with buttered-popcorn-infused ice cream ($14). The pineapple tonka cheesecake arrives in a cumulus cloud of Chantilly cream and tiny roasted pineapple cubes, cradled in a graham and ginger-snap crust ($14). Serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Tonight & Tomorrow at La Colombe D'Or, 3410 Montrose Blvd., 713.517.1001, Chris Fleischman Chef Jonathan Wicks 26

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