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Fine Dining & the Essentials that Make it Run

Fine dining is not something that you have to go to an expensive restaurant to experience. With a little effort and the right ingredients, you can prepare your own amazing meals. While it helps to acquire some great recipes and some basic cooking skills, having the best ingredients and the proper equipment goes a long way towards providing you with gourmet meals that everyone will relish.

Where Will You Be Preparing the Meal?

The place you will be preparing the meal must be considered before you make any preparations. Cooking at home is the simplest option, as everything you need will be right at hand. In some cases, however, you may want to prepare your meal at another location. A barbecue, for example, is always fun during summer holiday weekends. Beach dining from such places like Rudee’s Restaurant & Cabana Bar is another location of where you can enjoy your meal and the view. Still another possibility is preparing a meal at a public venue where you’re hosting an event. In that case, you should scout out the facilities and find out what is available and what you’ll need to bring.

Equipment You Will Need

The specific equipment you will need depends on the style of cooking you will be doing. There are, however, certain fundamentals that everyone should have on hand.

  • Cutlery -Including quality chef knives and knife sharpening equipment.
  • Tools and Small Devices – Wooden spoons for stirring, whisks, spatula, vegetable peeler, cutting boards, measuring cups, measuring spoons, potato masher, skimmer, tongs, kitchen shears, garlic press, grater, oven mitts, salt & pepper mill.
  • Appliances -Convection oven, blender, crock pot, mixer, food processor.

You won’t necessarily need every one of these things. In some cases, you may need items not listed above. This, however, is a good place to start. If you can find a store or business, such as Albuquerque Restaurant Equipment, near you that sells restaurant equipment, you can begin to stock up on what you need. You may also be able to find good deals on equipment you need online.

Ingredients for Gourmet Cooking

Cooking is so diverse that it’s difficult to generalize about what ingredients you need. However, no matter what style of cooking you prefer, you should always keep in mind that if you want to create dishes that are memorable, you must start with the finest ingredients. This include:

  • Starters -Don’t neglect starters such as soups, salads and appetizers. These set the stage for any great meal. Start off with good quality lettuce and tasty homemade dressings for salads, soup stock and some great appetizers.
  • Meat and Fish -Starting with the best cut of meat or the freshest fish is essential to create great dishes.
  • Fruits and Vegetables -Look for items that are fresh but not overripe. Organic is usually best. Don’t be afraid to experiment and broaden your horizons; using more exotic fruits and veggies create more interesting meals.
  • Spices -Any meal can be improved by the right spices and flavorings. Don’t overdo it, though. Aim for a good blend of spices. If you are cooking something hot and spicy, you can try things like homemade salsa, hot peppers and gourmet chili spices, that you can always get from The Chile Guy.
  • Desserts -It’s always pleasant to end a fine meal with something sweet. This is another area where you have a great deal of leeway to experiment.
  • Beverages -Includes fine wines, non-alcoholic beverages such as fruit juices and tea, coffee or espresso for after the meal.

Fine dining is an art that can improve the quality of your life. Eating well, like at Café Jean Pierre, is a pleasure that can now be enjoyed by almost anyone who is willing to exercise their creativity, learn some basic skills and acquire the right ingredients and equipment.

Choosing A Restaurant for a Special Night Out in Albuquerque

Whether Valentine’s Day, an anniversary, or her birthday is approaching, choosing the right romantic evening is the best way to show that special person in your life how much you love her. The ingredients for romance are actually quite simple: fine clothes, flowers, fine food, and probably a small gift. But while the ingredients are easily listed, actually picking the right restaurant and setting the right mood can be difficult. When setting up that special night out in Albuquerque, you want the very best in restaurants, flowers, and even chauffeured limo services.

For the flowers, order a flower bouquet of the freshest roses from In Bloom Flowers. This top class florist is open every day except Sundays and will provide same day or next day delivery of any and all flower arrangements. You can have flowers ready for your special night out even if you procrastinate.

As for your travel arrangements, you special someone will be suitably impressed by your efforts if you order a chauffeured car from Transportation Solutions. She will feel like a princess when a tuxedo clad chauffeur shows up in anything from an executive sedan to a stretch limo, depending on what type of vehicle you order. You and your date can sit in the back of the vehicle sipping champagne and sharing small talk while you are conveyed to the restaurant and back home after.

No matter how lovely the flowers and the car service, though, the restaurant is what will make this night truly memorable. Should you pick French cuisine, family style dining, or maybe even some of the best diner food in the country.

While it may not sound romantic, Standard Diner redefines the concept of diners. It is a restaurant that takes usual diner fair and adds a modern flair to it. It has even been featured on TV, where Food Network’s Guy Fieri gave it a rave review. If your special someone likes chocolate brownie sundaes and comfort food, this should be your restaurant of choice.

If you want something a little more traditionally romantic, try some of Chef Jean Pierre Gozard’s fare at Cafe Jean Pierre. He will literally walk by your table to see how you enjoy the wonderfully delicate meals and flavorful sauces he concocts in his kitchen. Eating at Cafe Jean Pierre will feel like dining in Paris.

Finally, if your special night also includes some little ones, the Range Cafe is the perfect family restaurant for dinner. The excellent selection of food ranges from traditional New Mexican fare to classic American barbecue. There is even a kid’s menu for finicky eaters. Everyone in your family will love the excellent food.

Cuisine Variations in Restaurants Today

There was a time when dining out was limited to a very few choices – at the economical end of the scale were a half dozen national or regional fast food chains – above that, ‘sit down’ establishments offered variations of steak, seafood, Italian, Chinese or Mexican.

That’s all changed, as we have become a country of foodies, interested in trying cuisines from different parts of the world, or paying attention to specific kind of dietary regimens, like vegetarian, gluten free, and other options.

Today, dining out has become an exciting adventure, and we have a choice of myriad styles of dining, different types of cuisine, styles of cooking, or combinations of these segments.

Whether you have a taste for traditional French food, like from Café Jean Pierre, a hankering for something made with Mexican red mole paste from The Chile Guy, or just steak and potatoes, there’s an establishment serving exactly what you like, and probably at a price point you will find agreeable.

We have restaurants ranging in service from drive-through only, to fast casual, family restaurants, like Range Café, to five star, fine dining establishments and everything in between. An entire new class of entrepreneurs have introduced us to ‘mash-ups’ of different cuisines, selling their own concoctions inexpensively, and prepared fresh, served from carts or trucks parked around cities.

Additionally, multiple new operations have opened that cater to one specific type of cuisine; there are a dozen or more new restaurant chains that focus only on hamburgers. Giant buffets with Asian variations offer dozens and dozens of choices at a single serving and flat price. Brazilian steak houses serve you a dozen different types of protein on demand at your table, cooked to a char in the South American “cowboy style.”

Additionally, each region of the country has its own specialties, unique to the area, whether it’s Cajun/Creole in New Orleans, Tex-Mex in San Antonio, Salmon in the Pacific Northwest, beef in the corn belt or Virginia Beach seafood dining from Rudee’s Restaurant & Cabana Bar, one can enjoy dozens of different styles around the country or around their home town.

The introduction of all of these new cuisines and the addition of boutique and unique grocery stores bringing us new and exciting ingredients have also influenced our home cooking as well. We chop, dice, slice, whip, puree, bake, broil and fry at home like never before and we can still get a feel of a home cooked meal from Standard Diner.

It’s an entirely new world in the restaurant business, with owners constantly introducing something new to amaze the public.

Fine Dining

When you think about fine dining, you might think about the restaurants that have the candles on the tables, dim lighting, white tablecloths and expensive food. This can be a scenario, but there is often more to fine dining than this type of experience. Fine dining can be anything from the luxurious restaurants to the small cafes where you gather with a few friends.

Steak and More

Food that you might associate with fine dining probably includes steak, lobster, a nice pasta dish or something else that is filling and exquisite. This is usually a setting when you gather with an intimate group, your family or a significant other to celebrate time spent together. It could be for a birthday, holiday or anniversary. A French café, such as Café Jean Pierre, is an example of where you might find this type of food and environment. The waiters sometimes bring a bottle of champagne to the table or offer you a glass of wine, and there is sometimes live music in the background.

Diners

You might not think of a diner as a fine dining experience. However, as long as you are with the company of others, any meal can be considered fine dining. You can enjoy a hamburger with hand cut French fries and diner customer service instead of spending a large amount of money at a fancy restaurant. The diner, like Standard Diner, is an environment where you can see a variety of people who gather at a bar area to drink a milkshake or sit in a booth to enjoy a pizza.

Café’s

If you are looking for somewhere small, then a café might be the perfect option. You can usually have an intimate conversation with one person or even a few people at the same table. Café customer service often includes someone taking your order and bringing your food, but it can also be a location where you place an order and receive your food at a counter. You would then be able to sit wherever you want in the café. Range Café is one of the environments where you have more of a choice in how and what you order.