Last night, my fiance entertained the following dream for a brief moment: Someday, we'll make a monthly reservation at Thomas Keller's ad hoc in Napa. Once a month, we'll fly west, pop in on a few wineries, and dine at our absolute favorite restaurant.
Lovely. And so not gonna happen. Instead, I gave him (us, really) the gorgeous new Ad Hoc at Home, and we plan to have an at-home ad hoc date every so often. We really will follow through — we love cooking together — but for the non-kitchen-inclined, what are you to do when your favorite food's so far away?
In "this gastronomic Age of Miracles" and its concurrent recession, GQ contributor Brett Martin says step away from the terminal and pick up the telephone. He presents "The Fed Ex Meal Plan." The goal?
To get as many foods as possible, from all over the world, sent overnight via FedEx to my home in Brooklyn.
It started with a couple of In-N-Out burgers (good call), but Martin quickly developed some pretty specific criteria.
I would only order foods that were distinctly of their place. They would have to be meals — prepared dishes that, in the past, I would have been obliged to travel to distant lands to taste, or taste again. My dream list included bollito misto from Ristorante Diana in Bologna, Italy — dripping cuts of meat boiled together in a rich stock and served with spicy fruit mustards; muffuletta sandwiches from New Orleans's Central Grocery Co.; Allen & Son Barbeque's North Carolina pulled pork; parsley-and-marrow salad from St. John Restaurant in London; tonkatsu from Tokyo; the Malaysian noodles.
Read on to evaluate his success, and drool a bit.