Ahhhhhhhh…..Capella!!!! – A Page Turner

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Capella, the brightest star in the constellation of Auriga and the name of a relatively new luxury boutique hotel in Washington DC.  How fitting, Auriga houses Capella and Capella in Washington houses one of DC’s brightest chefs on the “Haute Cuisine” scene – – Executive Chef Jakob Esko.

My first encounter with Chef Esko’s elevated cuisine happened on June 25th in The Grill Room and within weeks the status of “regular” was bestowed upon me.  I must confess within this very short time frame, I’ve managed to savor many dishes from Chef Esko and my palate has not grown tired.  In fact the palate continues to find extreme pleasure on every return.  I finally reached that “Surprise me, cook whatever you want” moment as Chef Esko’s brilliance was reminiscent of my recent “Michelin Starred” Paris & Anacapri trip.  When a request of that magnitude is set in motion, overnight accommodations become part of the equation for the wine induced state and anticipated over indulgence of fine cuisine leaves little room for travel.  So with a slight “suggesting/urging” from Chef Esko, the aforementioned overnight accommodations were made.  We were extremely fortunate to secure accommodations at Capella the night of the planned feast, as Chef Esko assured me that it would be unforgettable.

Capella

 

The Grill Room
The Grill Room

 

The Grill Room
The Grill Room

 

The Grill Room
The Grill Room

 

The Grill Room
The Grill Room

We arrived, checked-in and headed to The Rye Bar.  For the whiskey lover, this is your spot.  I’ve lessened the fire-water and gravitated to bubbles – – Tattinger to be exact for this night.  A quick appearance by Chef Esko, a tour of the kitchen and then the coveted seating for dinner.  We were told it would be AMAZING and WOW…….

 

The Rye Bar

 

The Rye Bar
The Rye Bar

 

Bubbly in The Rye Bar
Bubbly in The Rye Bar

 

In the kitchen with Chef Esko
In the kitchen with Chef Esko

 

In the kitchen with Chef Esko
In the kitchen with Chef Esko

AMAZING it was – – what an incredible surprise, The Rooftop.  The “suggested/urged” overnight stay by Chef Esko made perfect sense now.  FYI – – you must be a guest of the hotel to gain access to the roof, these are the rules!!!  And yes, rules are a beautiful thing especially when the end result is this:

A Beautiful Sunset, Rosé Tattinger, An Unbelievable Menu and A Gorgeous Moonrise

 

Sunset over Georgetown - Capella Rooftop
Sunset over Georgetown – Capella Rooftop

 

Capella's Rooftop
Capella’s Rooftop

 

Rooftop Dining - View of Infinity Pool
Rooftop Dining – View of Infinity Pool

 

Kyle - - Our Server
Kyle – – Our Server

 

Bone Marrow, Butter, Bread & Champagne
Bone Marrow, Butter, Bread & Champagne

 

Chef Esko welcoming us to the roof
Chef Esko welcoming us to the roof

 

 

Arrival of The First Course - Sturgeon Caviar with Vichyssoise
Arrival of The First Course – Sturgeon Caviar with Vichyssoise

 

Sturgeon Caviar with Vichyssoise
Sturgeon Caviar with Vichyssoise

 

Sturgeon Caviar with Vichyssoise
Sturgeon Caviar with Vichyssoise

 

Sturgeon Caviar with Vichyssoise - Spices and Herbs
Sturgeon Caviar with Vichyssoise – Spices and Herbs

 

Taittinger
Taittinger

 

Wine
Sommelier Tomas Vandenboomgaard & Taittinger

 

Wine Sancerre
2012 Vincent Delaporte Sancerre

 

Chef
Chef Esko explaining the next course

 

Lobster Ravioli (Sweetbread & Pea Ragout)
Lobster Ravioli (Sweetbread & Pea Ragout)

 

Lobster Ravioli (Sweetbread & Pea Ragout)
Lobster Ravioli (Sweetbread & Pea Ragout)

 

Delicious Lobster Ravioli
Delicious Lobster Ravioli

 

Lobster & Taittinger
Lobster & Taittinger

 

Wine
2011 Regnie – Domaine Guy Breton – Beaujolais

 

Suckling Pig & Baked Peach
Suckling Pig & Baked Peach

 

Suckling Pig & Baked Peach
Suckling Pig & Baked Peach

 

Wine
2011 Far Niente Chardonnay

 

Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust
Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust

 

Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust
Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust

 

The Snapper
Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust

 

Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust
Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust

 

Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust
Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust

 

Fish
Red Snapper Baked in Salt Crust (Saffron Foam & Olive Oil Poached Potato and Asparagus)

 

 

Dessert
Caramelia Cremeaux (Passion Fruit & Banana Sorbet – – Cocoa Streusel)

 

Dessert
Caramelia Cremeaux (Passion Fruit & Banana Sorbet – – Cocoa Streusel)

From start to finish every dish was accompanied by a detailed explanation by Chef Esko.  From the intricate display of herbs and spices beneath the Vichyssoise and caviar to the positioning of the delicately sliced baked peach covering the euphoric suckling pig.  Our only requirement was to consume and enjoy – – we did and loved it!!!

Chef Esko embodies excellence.  His approach to food is one of accuracy where flavors and textures become motivators of nirvana.  His heart and hands at work reveal the passion and delicacy that makes every bite of his cuisine special and personal.  This evening was “Priceless” and will forever be one of the most incredible dining experiences of my life, for only true friendship can render such an outcome and for that we are grateful.

Chef Esko – – WOW!!!!  This was beyond amazing so much so, I totally forgot to photograph our amazing accommodations.  I guess this means we’ll need to do this again.

To your hands and heart, we give thanks.

 

 Moonrise

The Moonrise
The Moonrise

 

 

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