We continue to countdown our 100 favorite dishes at local restaurants. We'll be sharing these with you every weekday until our annual Best Of Issue comes out. Enjoy!
#62. Roasted Beef Marrow Bones at Brasserie Pascal
You could trace back the popularity of roasted beef marrow bones to one man, Fergus Henderson. His restaurant, St. John, was a restaurant that did two seemingly impossible things: it made off-cuts of meat chic and British food relevant. Henderson's cookbook, Nose to Tail Eating: A Kind of British Cooking, became a sort of tome on how to prepare the often neglected cuts of an animal; and one of the most popular dishes at the restaurant and in the cook book was his roasted beef marrow bones.
Here in Orange County, the best place to get roasted beef marrow bones is not an English place, but a honest-to-goodness French restaurant by none other than Pascal Olhats. At his Brasserie Pascal, Olhats splits the bones lengthwise, an improvement, actually, from the cross-sections that Henderson chooses to prepare his. Done the Olhats way, you can run the tiny tines of you fork straight down the tube to get at every last speck of the marrow's Jell-O-like jiggle, which is salty, fatty, and unlike any animal product you've ever had before. You spread it on toast and it melts like chunky brown butter.
The thrill of eating of your first one will feel like it's a forbidden kind of food, as if you're eating something you're not supposed to enjoy. You can't help but feel lightheaded and then sorrow when you think about how many precious beef marrow bones you've previously let gone to waste without so much as any thought about the goodness that was hidden inside.
Brasserie Pascal, 327 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, (949) 640-2700;pascalnpb.com. Open for lunch, Mon.-Sat., 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m.; happy hour, Mon.-Fri., 5-7 p.m.; dinner, Mon.-Wed. 5-9 p.m.; Thurs.- Sat., 5-10 p.m.; Sun., 5-8 p.m.; Sunday brunch, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Entrées, $10-$30. Full bar.
The list so far:
Jerk Carnitas Torta at The Crosby
Nem Nuong Cuon at Brodard
Pork Chop Anything at Nice Time Deli
Flying Saucer at Alberto's
Frozen Custard at Marc Burger's in Macy's Signature Kitchen
Collard Greens at Johnny Reb's
Strawberry Shortcake from Job's Daughters
Cuban Sandwich at DeSimone's Deli
Lamb with Preserved Cabbage at Mas Islamic Chinese
Baked Rice at Luc Dinh Ky
Beans on Toast at The Olde Ship
Midnight Al Pastor Burrito or Taco at Taqueria Tapatia
Budino di Cioccolato, Pizzeria Ortica
Beef Teriyaki Bowl, Teriyami
Salmon Onigiri at Cream Pan
Beef Fat Fries at SideDoor
Silken Tofu & Thousand Year Old Egg at Asian Tapas
Cambodian Beef Jerky at Sophy's
Com Tam at Com Tam Tran Quy Cap
Chipotle-Piloncillo Goat Cheese at SOL Cocina
Nem Nuong Cuon at Au Lac Restaurant
Blackened Mushroom & Tofu Burger at Taco Loco
Fried Veggie Fish Fillet at Dong Phuong Tofu
Tofu Vegetable Salad at BCD Tofu House
Che Ba Mau at Thach Che Hien Khanh
Barracuda Sushi at Ohshima
Spinach Empanadas at El Gaucho #2
Croissants at Molinos Bakery
Beso de Monja at El Rincón del Sabor
Fatteh at Kareem's
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