This time last year we were gearing up for summer dining week. Unfortunately there will be no dining week this summer. Neither the Downtown Committee nor the other area restaurants have the funds to support the advertising budget.

So far this spring the downtown business has been quite slow. Some said it is the Pascale Effect, they may be right. Pook, Ali, DDT and I went there last week and we ended up having to say "Hi" to half of the customers in the dining room. We went there twice to finish the whole menu. Their concept is great. Its a lot more casual than before. Those 2 bros will make it well over there. For sure we will miss them downtown too.

Next month Pook and I will go back to Chicago again to see one of my daughters. She made reservations for us at L2O (L two O) it is a French-Japanese or French-Asian restaurant. This is one of the very top places in the area, we will go there for their Peking Duck special. My kid sent me L2O's blog about their Peking Duck and told me to check out a different preparation. Its really quite interesting what they are doing there.

While Pook and I were in Thailand I ate several Peking Duck at two of the best restaurants in Southeast Asia. This is the way they serve it: 

The lacquer skin with a homemade crape, Hoisen sauce, fresh cucumber, and green onion. Then the rest of the meat they cook to your liking. We had them cook it two ways. One with black pepper sauce and the other sautéed with sprouts and celery.

Soft shell crab may not last that long this season. The fish, shrimp and oyster price is going up very fast. They are using the Gulf excuse to murder us on the price. We'll see what I can do.

Your Chef,