Amuse Bouche, Asparagus
Wrapped in prosciutto and topped with a sliver of Parmesan and dotted with balsamic vinegar. You will forgive the kitchen for the slightly irregular apportioning between samples once you pop it in your mouth and bask in the tart saltiness of the experience.
Five-spice marinated duck breast
Cooked to a rosy medium, the earthy duck is balanced by a creamy smear of goat cheese and cut by tangy pickled cherries. Top marks for this dish.
Studded with pistachios, larded with foie gras, perfumed with truffles. A fine example of a classic dish.
Poached arctic char with white asparagus
Perfectly poached—firm yet flaky—but over-salted, and its flavor perhaps crossed the line into the "too fishy" class.
Things were not helped by the accompanying paella, that, despite also being texturally correct, was also too salty; the flavor profile was unrelentingly that of chorizo.
Roasted Hampshire pork loin
A beautiful dish, served along a with an effervescent mint and pea puree, a buttery plank of potato terrine, and a sherry vinegar jus. The pork was succulent and flavorful and worked wonderfully with the puree, which brightened the dish considerably and thrust it to the head of the class.
Vanilla panna cotta
All one could ask for—creamy and dense, but yielding—matched by a tangy compote of rhubarb and raspberry, spiked with ginger.
Trio of chocolate
A delicately layered Napoleon, a generous dollop of malt chocolate ice cream, and a pint-sized black forest cake.