Trotter's To Go

March 12 2005 - 10:13 AM

I have never been to Trotter’s. I just haven’t… no good reason I guess. But I thought it was odd that I had never even walked into Trotter’s to Go. I saw the website. I love Pastoral, go to Whole Foods and buy miscellaneous crap from Sam’s cheese and accoutraments section and I was on Fullerton.

It’s a neat store. They have a wine section, a fridge case with all
sorts of items: breads, desserts. They’re across the street from the
athletic club. Now I get it. Fox and Obel for the Northsiders. What’s
interesting is inflatable slide that it’s nothing I haven’t seen before. Well not quite… They cater,
they make custom cakes. They do more of a daily special pre-pro thing
than your local grocery but they still have the rotisserie chicken.

They have a peppered tuna, Thai short-ribs, pot roast, duck confit
and other proteins. Where the pasta salad should be was israeli
couscous, sunchokes in white truffle oil, curried cauliflower, etc.
dish sounded interesting but more for specific reasons, wood fires,
combinations (a pistachio mint avocado brocolli thing), prep time.

With the concern of prep time I gravitated to the duck confit,
weighing it against the pot roast which was recommended. Since the
items are by weight and if you shop at Whole Foods you can tell
that the ahi tuna, at $25 a lb, is a fairly good value. The confit ran
$15 for 2 breasts. I added a side of 4 asparagus spears in an oil &
vinagerette with garlic and orange bits for $5.25 and chocolate chip
cookie dough balls for $7.50. I was dead set on eating those cookies
raw too.

They threw in a Ciabatta bread and I was off to Sam’s where I got a
Chateauneuf Du Pape, Du Vieux Lazaret… and a Rhone Grenache, Andre
Brunel. I drank the Lazaret.

I did have a moment thinking that I just got “take-out” that needs
to be cooked? I opened the fridge and popped open the container and
took a whiff up close and personal and remarked to my dog… holy-f__.
It took 15 minutes to cook. I had to wait 2 hours for my wife to come
home first. So I finished the last 1/6th of my Chuck’s Blanc…. (YES.
I’m redeeming my $3 wine oeuvre)

I have had good duck confit and ok duck confit. I’ve also had bad
duck at Amarit downtown as well as Chinese places in other cities. I am
not a crazy duck fan. I do like the confit done well.

This was fricken great confit. I found myself later in the kitchen
running my finger over the greasy sheet pan and licking it. That’s a
problem. It’s an old pan. I wanted to cook the cookies on it.

I thought of Hot Doug’s french fries in rendered duck fat. That was
good. This was grrreat! It may be counterproductive to ramble on about
duck confit. But when it’s good I LOVE it. The Social in Milwaukee does
a terrific confit as well as a mac and cheese that gives Martha’s a
race. (her mac and cheese is really what landed her in the clink…)

The asparagus. Tough to follow confit with asparagus. Also terrific.
Huge stalks blanched to my taste (my grandmother would send them back
with instruction to cook until shapeless) in a very tasty oil and
vinegar with a garlic clove that they did something to. It was pickled
and marinated and very tasty. I wanted more.

The cookies were great too. They’re really better cooked but they
looked pretty raw, like little scoops of pretend ice cream. Cooked and
cold they have a fantastic inflatable water slide crunch which as I lay in bed later was one
more clue as to the sheer fat content of this stuff. I mean I KNOW I
got the confit. I know I was basically licking the pan but those
cookies were crispy! And tasty! And perfectly salty! (I did call the following morning, mouth full,  to find out if there’s any lard or anything in the super crunchy cookie and it’s just butter, sugar, etc…)

I was so into the food that
it’s now gone and while the packaging’s pretty I got the manager’s info
and look forward to going back to shoot it proper-like.