It ended up that some of the most terrifying dishes were the tastiest, while others confirmed my instincts. Confit of pig heart with sprouted lentils and hazelnut oil had lovely texture, a mild flavor, and was nothing to be afraid of, while other viscera like kidney and liver were undeniably challenging, even prepared with Logan's masterful touch. Pig trotter (that's foot for the uninitiated) stuffed with mashed potato on a bed of mustard greens and pork cheek with carnaroli rice and air-dried ham were winning combinations, while I couldn't get my head (or mouth) around braised tongue with ham hock wrapped in cabbage or rolled pig spleen with wild mushroom rillettes. I'm pretty sure humans are not meant to eat the spleen of any animal. Among my favorites was one of the scariest on paper, pork blood ravioli stuffed with pig snout over parsley puree. It was an excellent and quite beautiful little plate that I'd order again without hesitation. Wouldn't have guessed that snout would land at the top of the list, or that the taste of blood would bother me so much less than the sight of it.
The "intestine raffle" in the middle of the meal was a nice break, as I was not among the diners selected to receive a prize of (you guessed it) more pig, in the form of a colon sausage. One of the lucky winners magnanimously passed his around for sampling, and it was actually very nice. But it wasn't as impressive as the intermezzo cocktail, bacon-infused vodka garnished with a toothpick of pork done three ways. Yowch. That's definitely when the evening took a turn for the rowdy, leaving a trail of hazy, piglicious memories in its wake.
I can't say that I've come around to organ meats from this experience, and it's far from natural for anyone to eat that much swine in one sitting, but it was a rare treat to see the realization of a menu so clever and ambitious-albeit a little sadistic. The word is out that Logan has recently sold the restaurant, so I'm glad I got the chance. As swan songs go, this was certainly one for the books. Bistro Corlise will be sorely missed. Classic French cuisine treated with this level of integrity doesn't come around very often.Bistro Corlise