Ok, so this is probably the last part of my birthday post.... Dinner at Lan Japanese Restaurant in the East Village.
My request for my birthday dinner was simple. I knew exactly what I wanted. Either Shabu-Shabu or Sukiyaki. Shabu Shabu is a communal hot pot dish filled with vegetables. You are served raw, super-thin slices of beef and you dip it in the boiling hot pot to cook and then have 2 choices of dipping sauces. Either a refreshing ponzu sauce or a creamy sesame sauce. Sukiyaki is also a communal hot pot dish filled with vegetables. However the broth is already flavored with a soy based sauce. You also have the raw thin slices of beef that you cook in the pot yourself. Therefore, since the meat and vegetables are already flavored with the soy sauce, instead of dipping it in a sauce, you dip it in raw egg! BRILLIANT!
My mom got a recommendation from her friend to try Lan because they had Shabu Shabu. As I went online to look at their menu, they had way more than just Shabu Shabu... I was tempted by all their awesome sounding appetizers!!! Also, as I was reading their reviews on Yelp, I saw that most of the people were recommending the steaks...
Ed, my mom, my brother, and his girlfriend Amanda helped me to try many things on the menu! We tried a bunch of appetizers and everyone got a different entree and desserts so, I think we almost got the whole menu down haha! The portions were quite small for the appetizers which was nice because we were able to try more things!
Simmered Berkshire Pork Cheek with Potato Puree... melted like butter :-)
Miso Infused Filet Mignon “Tataki” with Parmigiano Reggiano... Delicious flavor and the meat was extremely tender!
Poached Foie Gras with Wasabi Ponzu Sauce... I have never had such refreshing foir gras! Usually, it's so very rich and a few bites will do. Perhaps this one was so refreshing because it was poached instead of pan fried? And the sauce definitely helped in lightening up the dish!
U.S. Kobe Beef Tongue Simmered with Sweet Miso and Red Wine Topped with Mascarpone Cheese... That's a huge tongue. This was good as well, but it just didn't satisfy my love for tongue because it didn't have that chewiness :-(
Crispy Warm Japanese Red Snapper Sashimi... Delicious. The sesame oil was the perfect flavoring to this fresh fish!
Handmade Tofu Steamed With Sear Urchin, Shimeji Mushroom Sauce... I was a little disappointed with this because since Uni was cooked, it had lost a lot of it's sweetness. Also, the tofu was more like a Chawanmushi consistency... extremely delicate.
Lobster Salad Topped With Sturgeon Caviar, Yuzu Citrus Vinaigrette... Perfect. Regreshing. Simple.
Grilled Organic Chicken & Scallion Skewer... Choice of two flavors: Spicy Yuzu Pepper Paste or Honey Soy. We got both! The chicken was super moist! I LOVED both but I think I preferred the honey soy!
That was just apps... Here were our entrées :-)
12 oz Rib Eye
Roasted Lamb Chops with Sesame Mustard Crust with Pan Seared Garlic Soy Sauce
Honey Roasted Berkshire Pork with Ginger Garlic Soy
Japanese Wagyu Rib Eye and Prime Rib Eye Shabu Shabu
Ok so here's what I generally thought of everyone's food. The flavors were great and interesting. However I found the meat itself to be either tough or dry. Me and my mom's shabu shabu, I thought was great! I thought it was marbled beautifully and had lots of flavor. My mom on the other hand (she wanted me to report her review) was that the Japanese Wagyu Ribeye looked beautiful, but it didn't have that special flavor that Japanese Wagyu should have. She said it just tasted like fat. I have never had Japanese wagyu so to me (and comparing it to beef that I've had in America), I thought it was great! She said it definitely wasn't worth the $68.00 (per one order!!) was worth it.
And finally dessert!
Happy Birthday To Me!
Mont Blanc Atop Rice Pudding with Cream Chestnut Soup... My favorite! I love Mont Blanc!
Poached Pear with Caramel Sauce... This was good also, but kinda plain.
Chocolate Soufflé, Raspberry Sauce and Vanilla Ice Cream... This was good as well, but it was just a good ol' chocolate soufflé.
Mango, Passionfruit, and Blackberry Sorbet... Passionfruit was my fav!
All in all, I would say it was a great dinner. I was surprised though that the best dishes were the appetizers because I was so pumped for the beef!!
I am a seriously lucky girl... it was a great birthday filled with amazing people, great food, and lots of love :-) Thank you everyone!
56 3rd Ave (Btw 10th St and 11th St),
New York, NY 10003