Best Place To Eat With The Chef (2001)

Michael's at the Citadel

Its roots are in Europe, but it has taken firm hold in the Valley. It's the chef's table, an exclusive seating directly off the kitchen, with personal attention from the celebrity chef. With six to eight of our closest friends, we're in for a remarkable seven-course meal, custom-crafted, and with each detail explained by award-winning chef-owner Michael DeMaria -- an incredible bargain at $100 a person. Michael's contemporary American cuisine might include an appetizer of cucumber-wrapped Dungeness crab salad with seared scallop and braised spinach, smoked tomato water and horseradish vinaigrette. Then, arugula salad with Rosti Asian pear, walnut and Maytag blue cheese tart, and lemon-walnut vinaigrette. Next is potato-wrapped sea bass on summer asparagus and roasted shallots with cockle-clam vinaigrette. To clear the palate, an intermezzo of spring sorbet. Our entree this evening is barbecued braised short ribs with sweet corn, baby carrots, onions and fingerling potatoes. Finally, it's some imported cheese, please, and dessert of tiramisu crème brûlée. On an evening such as this, we're just so pleased to be us.

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