Friday, February 16, 2018

Pico Perfection

Just wanted to make sure you all knew that Pico is nearing perfection. The comfortable yet classy former Los Alamos General Store was excellent when it opened, but keeps finding ways to get better and better, and not the least of that was a redesign of the space. Originally it was set up to look like you still were entering a general store, with the main room featuring cute country housewares for sale, but now the bar is on the right side of the room and looking more like a bar, there are tables in the room--up and down the two levels--it's as if some feng shui master whipped everything into rightful shape.

Chef Drew Terp has had enough time to figure out what works, what grows, what smokes in Los Alamos, and you'll get all the best of that on your plate. Like the ingenious scallop starter above, one scallop, sliced, infused with about as much smoke as the mollusk can hold and not just be vapor, then caressed (it has to be some lovingtender gesture like that) with a hit of lime, tarragon, and that pomegranate seed like a button of flavorful crunch. (The salad ain't bad neither.)

Then there's the secretly simple wild mushroom consomme, a dish name that fails marketing 101--some hypester would no doubt dub it with a moniker like Mad Mushroom Mania! For it packs a vavoominess of shroominess in what looks like mere broth, and then there are tiny pearl onions soft as tears that are all onion without any sting. In this scrumptious bath are several perfect tortelloni you will want to cut with with your fork to make them last over several bites and the pasta will give pleasingly before it breaks as its very fresh and then inside you'll find a ricotta stuffing that no doubt is housemade ricotta, moist enough to delight yet something substantial enough to taste.

There's more, there's always more...ah that grilled pork secreto, part of the shoulder of a mangalista pig, a cut that comes fanned out on the plate like duck breast, pink in the center, grilled crusty goodness at the edges, and all pork flavor (and more of that smoke). And a new dessert, a pot de creme de la creme, as I'd like to call it. Better yet, call Pico for reservations.

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