Last Sunday was the final day of Wolfgang Puck’s four-day Los Angeles Food and Wine festival. We felt honored to attend the Sunday Brunch and Charity Auction: Wolfgang Puck at the Hotel Bel-Air. The surrounding were luxe, as one would expect of Bel-Air, especially after the hotel’s recent overhaul. We enjoyed glasses of champagne and light hors d’ouvres. A cool breeze was blowing over the courtyard and swans were gliding in the pond while a trio played light jazz.
Champagne wishes and caviar dreams came true as bubbly was passed and Rory Herrmann of Bouchon made beautiful quenelles of Petrossian white sturgeon caviar. I love Rory’s cooking, so I was a little disappointed. I asked, “You’re only serving caviar?” before I caught myself, and he just looked at me. Only caviar. Craig von Foerster served his take on steak and eggs — Grilled Wagyu beef with Sous Vide Quail Egg, Smoked Wagyu Beef Fat and Monterey Sea Salt. yes, it has come to the point where we now source the salt on the menu. I have never has sous vide eggs before, and it was a perfect way to make them, though it makes me imagine teeny tiny little round plastic bags. Chef Craig’s assistant was impressive at not breaking the oh so delicate yolks.
Chef Douglas Keane offered simmered, chilled eggplant, which was a refreshing addition to the menu and almost was like a fruit compote. But that wasn’t the big switcheroo of the morning. Michel Richard of Citronelle served uber light and fluffy scrambled eggs over smoked slamon and salmon caviar. The taste of the sea was so intense from the salmon we didn’t even notice — epic palate fail. They were scrambled scallops! Seriously!
James Caan and Sir Sidney Poitier (yes, he is knighted — to Sir, with love for real) were in attendance, but we spent most of our time with Sister Alice Marie Quinn and her reps from Meals on Wheels. We talked about the importance of the human contact as much as the food. For some people, their Meals on Wheels delivery is the only person they see all day. Thanks so much to Wolfgang Puck for working so hard to keep Meals on Wheels going, feeding the few to feed so many!