Qui Tasting Menu Counter 2nd Visit

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I returned to Qui for the fall season to see how they have progressed since my first visit over the summer.  They use the same reservation system (tock) that was pioneered by Alinea in Chicago.  It was fairly easy to get a reservation in advance.  It is a pre-paid ticketing system, with the option of purchasing the wine pairing in advance as well or to wait until there to decide. They only do the tasting menu on the weekends. For this visit, I dined with a local friend, and we both decided to go with the wine pairing option.

The first small bite starter was the same.  It was the frozen mezcal foam with jamón Ibérico topped with a little sal de gusano.  Next, a squid ink chip, topped with phytoplankton aioli and shiso.

The small bites were concluded first with Marcona almond dashi with compressed rose apples and hyacinth, and then with watermelon sorbet with koji (fermented cooked rice), sakura, togarashi, and green tea oil.

These opening plates provided a variety of tastes, textures and temperatures to wake up the palate.  With these, we were poured some nice 2004 varietal French champagne (label pictured).

For the full write-up, click here.

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Qui Tasting Counter — Austin, TX (6/2015)

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When planning my trip to Austin, I had originally planned to dine somewhere else on my last evening.  However, at the last minute, I ran across an article about Austin food which mentioned a new offering at Paul Qui’s relatively new restaurant located just east of the Entertainment District.  On the website, I managed to make a reservation for the early seating (reservations are booked using a ticketing system very similar to that used by some restaurants in Chicago where you pre-pay, but this one readily accepts solo diners, if there is room).

The counter seating for the tasting menu is in the same room as the 3 rows of community table seating for the regular restaurant and looks out at the kitchen area.  There were 8 seats, but only four were filled for the early seating.

As soon as I was seated, they served a complimentary apéritif:  Campari, apple juice and white wine, served in a clear glass soda bottle.

For the full write-up, click here.