Monday, March 19, 2007

Millenium FEAST

Tonight we drove up to San Francisco to have dinner with Musty's mom, who is passing through California (from Florida on her way to a ski trip in Canada)... She's not a vegetarian, but she is always very sweet and enthusiastic about my vegan diet, and willing to try anything. So, I made us a reservation at the illustrious all-vegan, gourmet Millenium Restaurant. Musty and I ate there once, many years ago and we weren't that impressed. But they've moved, and got a new chef, and we've heard nothing but great reviews... so off we set.
I was egging everyone on to order as many courses as possible, mostly just so that I could try everyone's dish! haha. They were very obliging. :)

Here are our Starters and Salads selections:

Musty's Mom chose: Grilled Asparagus Salad: little gem lettuce, creamy pink peppercorn "ranch", sun dried tomato relish, crisp spring garlic chips

Musty "chose" (at my urging): Romaine: julienne carrots, toasted croutons, Caesar vinaigrette

I chose: Indian Yellow Bean Ragu: caramelized garlic, lemon, toasted pine nut bread crumbs & grilled bruschetta.
Complimentary Treat: The waitress sensed my crazed enthusiasm and also brought us out a complimentary order of Sesame Cornmeal Crusted Oyster Mushrooms: shaved Napa cabbage-grapefruit salad, black bean-Balinese pepper sauce.

Verdict: I think Musty's was my favorite - it was light, very flavorful, and fun to eat. Also, you don't get to eat many vegan Caesar salads, so that was very special. Mine was good, but a bit filling for an appetizer (don't worry - I didn't let that stop me!). The Crusted Mushrooms were GREAT! (and as you know, I'm not a mushroom fan). The sauce was rich, and the crusty mushrooms were so light and delicious. Musty's mom was the stellar for me - not bad by any means, but not a flavor explosion either.

Our Main Course Selections

Musty's Mom chose: Seared Emerald Rice Cake: Indonesian red coconut curry with winter root vegtables, lemongrass tofu, bok choy & shitake mushrooms, pineapple sambal, toasted peanuts.

Musty chose: Maple Glazed Smoked Tempeh: spring garlic-horseradish mashed potatoes, grilled asparagus & spring onions, Cabernet reduction

I chose: Artichoke Al Cartoccio: roasted fennel, spring garlic, spicy seitan sausage & Meyer lemon, served over barley-leek-chard risotto, toasted pine nut bread crumbs. (Mine arrived in a parchment paper packet, so it's pictured wrapped, and unwrapped)

Verdict: All three were insanely good. Absolutely no hesitation recommending any of these dishes!!

Our dessert selections :
(I don't have the dessert menu, so I can't remember all the elegant descriptions)

Musty's Mom chose: Lavender-scented Lemon Shortcake with Cream... some sort of vegan anglaise and a lavender "honey"

Musty "chose": Chocolate Almond Midnight: almond cashew crust, mocha chocolate filling, raspberry sauce, white chocolate mousse (also had crunchy little cocoa nibs -nice touch!)

I chose: Pineapple Gingerbread with Caramelized Pineapple, Caramel Sauce, and "Ice Cream" (it was so good, but I don't remember what flavor the ice cream was)

Verdict: GOOD GOOD & GOOD! Oh man! Such elegant, complex and delicious desserts. Musty's Mom's was very light, and very delicate. A nice after dinner treat. Mine was rich and moist and sweet and sugary. Musty's was so very amazing - very, very rich and perfectly balanced with the tangy raspberry sauce. Musty "couldn't finish his" (how sweet!) and it pushed me over the brink of pleasantly full into seriously full - but somehow I struggled my way through the last few bites. That white chocolate cream was crazy good!

Final Verdict - wow! What a very elegant, complex, and sophisticated meal. Delicious and surprising flavors and textures. Very balanced, very very good. Also, I might add, very very expensive. This is most definitely a save-up and splurge on a special occassion place. But once you've resigned yourself/prepared yourself for that - it's nothing but joy and pleasant surprises for the palette!


  1. *drool!* These dishes are breathtaking! I really must get out to San Francisco... I'm glad everyone was nice enough to accommodate your curious belly, too! ;)

  2. That looks amazing (and very posh)! The chocolate dessert definitely looks the best…yum!

  3. That meal looks fantastic- good thing you guys got an excuse for a special night out! And how nice of the waitress to throw in that free dish. I have to admit that last time we were in S.F., Daiku and I had every intention of going to Millenium but decided at the last minute that we couldn't afford it. {blush}

  4. LUCKY! I've wanted to go there for so long! Maybe someday...but now i'll live through you.

  5. Hi Kati,
    Yeah, it's really very fancy! I don't know that many super-elegant vegan restaurants - so gourmet!

    Hi Scottish Vegan!
    Yes! Posh! What a fun UK word! :) It was very posh indeed, and tasty too!

    Hi Bazu,
    I can see why you and Daiku would decide that... it was very, very expensive indeed. I guess if there were just two of us, it would have been a third cheaper though!

    Hi Webly,
    I guess the grass is always greener... there are so many places in Portland that I keep reading about and envying! I guess hopefully we'll all make our way around to these different spots.

  6. Anonymous6:36 AM

    wow, this looks so delicious, thanks for share!

  7. "Lavender-scented Lemon Shortcake" oh. My. Goodness. :D

  8. Um, that all looks insanely good. It's so nice that Musty's mother is supportive, but why wouldn't she be going to amazing resturants like that!


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