Wednesday, July 11, 2018

experiment #74 - 7.25.18

Greetings Guinea Pigs – it's time for another experiment!

Quick Details:
Date: 7.25.18 (Wednesday)
Price: $95 (inclusive of tax and tip)
Start time: 7pm

We will be doing a drawing for seats from all requests received over the first 48 hours. Please get your requests in quickly, and if you get a spot, please book it quickly.

To request spots, please send an email to and let us know how many you're requesting.

You will be advised by Tuesday 7/17 if your request has been confirmed. You'll then need to book your seats by noon on Friday 7/20, or we will need to release the seats to the wait list to ensure all spots are filled. Note the tight schedule: please make your request quickly, and if you get a spot, please book quickly.

We have limited seating available, and while we try to accommodate everyone who is interested, that is usually not possible - most events fill up fast. Due to space limitations, we will limit people to 2 spots per request, though if you're interested in more let us know and your request will be added to the waitlist.

When your seat request has been confirmed, please book it using the PayPal link which will be set up on the Cobaya website. Please do not book unless and until you've received a confirmation. When you do receive the confirmation, please book your seats through PayPal promptly. There will be a short window of time to book before seats need to be released back to the waitlist to make sure they're filled.

There will be an optional $45 beverage pairing; a la carte beverages will also be available. We're still checking on BYOB (please confirm in advance).

Confirmed and paid-up attendees will receive an e-mail the day before the event, confirming the location and other details.

A brief, but important, refresher course on the whole Cobaya thing: there is no "menu". There are no choices. You'll be eating what the chef chooses to make for the night. If you have food related allergies, strict dietary requirements, religious restrictions; are salt sensitive, vegetarian, pescatarian, or vegan; don't like your meat cooked medium rare, or are pregnant: this meal is probably not for you. Do not expect white-glove service. Don't ask for your sauce on the side. Just come and enjoy.

Plus some legalese: please note that if you're requesting a spot, you understand that any food or beverages you consume are at your own risk, that you voluntarily assume any and all risks, known and unknown, and voluntarily release the organizers of the event from any claims, including personal injury and wrongful death, resulting in any manner from your participation in this event, whether caused by negligence or otherwise. Hopefully it won't come to that.

Look forward to seeing you there. As always, thank you for your support.


experiment #74 - choose # and pairing

Thursday, March 22, 2018

experiment #73 - Cobaya Upland with Chef Justin Smillie

We've been working for quite a while to line up a Cobaya dinner with Justin Smillie, the New York based chef of Upland, who opened a second location in Miami Beach's South of Fifth neighborhood a little more than a year ago. So when things finally came together, we launched it, even if it was less than a week since our last event. His dinner was entirely off-menu but entirely in keeping with the "California cuisine" spirit of the place.

You can see all the pictures in this Cobaya Upland flickr set. Here's what we had:

spinach, asparagus, fava, artichoke, crispy mushroom, cotija
Lanson Brut Rosé NV

crispy coconut soft shell crab, hemp + soft herbs
Adams & Haart, Goldtropfchen, Riesling Kabinett, Mosel, Germany 2016

hot smoked tuna cheek, spicy mango
Chateau d'Epiré, Savennieres, Loire Valley, France 2014

salt marsh lamb BBQ, sweet potatoes, sprouted lentils + green sauce
K Vintners Guido Sangiovese, Walla Walla Valley, Washington 2013

strawberries, vanilla ice cream, granola
La Chapelle de Lafaurie-Peyraguey, Sauternes, France 2012

A big thank you to Chef Smillie, to his CDC Francis Derby, to the wonderful crew at Upland for keeping everything running so smoothly, and as always most of all to the guinea pigs whose interest and support make these events possible.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

experiment #72 - Cobaya Time Machine with Chef William Crandall and Bar Director Seth Weinberg

For Cobaya Experiment #72, chef William Crandall and bar director Seth Weinberg of Stripsteak in the Fontainebleau took us into a time machine to 1954, the year the resort was opened. Pictures, postcards and paraphernalia from the hotel's archives were on display, old menus inspired the night's dishes, and vintage spirits from the 1950's through the 1970's were sourced for all the cocktails. It was a pretty fully realized theme dinner and a truly unique experience.

You can see pictures from the evening in this Cobaya Fontainebleau 1954 flickr set; here's the lineup of what we had:

Hemingway Daiquiri
Ron Bacardi Superior, Cherry Heering, Grapefruit, Lime

Torchon de Foie Gras
Peppered Port Wine, Leek Quenelle, Pumpernickel

Strangers In the Night
Barros Porto Colheita, Stravecchio Branca, Chateau Thierry Orange Bitters

Sole Bonne Femme
Mousseline of Wild Mushrooms, Caviar Hollandaise, Shallot Confit

Luck Be a Lady
Southern Comfort, Dubac Orange Brandy, Jorghe Amaro

Blood Orange, Mango, Yuzu, Champenoise

"A Chilling Temptation"
Pernod Intermezzo Mist

Steak Diane
Brandy-Dijon Jus, Pommes Salardaise

It's Up to You New York
Jim Beam Bicentennial Bourcon, Noilly Prat Sweet Vermouth, Angostura Bitters

Salade de Caesar
Black Pepper, Parmesan Sabayon, Bioche Panade

Les Pre-Desserts
Elderflower Gelee, Huckleberry Gelato

Oscar Cordial
Liquore di Prugne

Desserts La Fin
Ambrosia Mille Feuille, Pineapple, Coconut, Passion Fruit

Bananas Foster
Saint James Rhum, Tekel Muz Banana, Cinnamon Brown Sugar

A huge thank you to Chef Crandall for bringing style and finesse to a classical menu, to Seth Weinberg for a truly remarkable sample of spirits and cocktails from another era, to Breanna Tepper for her great work on the desserts, to GM David Borowick for keeping things running smoothly all evening, to the whole crew at Stripsteak and the Fontainbleau for a very special evening, and as always most of all, to the guinea pigs whose interest and support make these events possible.