Connie, Susan, and I (Christine) each had the opportunity to parttake of the Dissident Chef’s “Niman Ranch Meal” this past weekend. The Dissident Chef/Subculture Dining is something I’ve written about here on Muffin Top before–an underground dining experience drenched in secrecy, anticipation, and adventure. You don’t know what you’ll eat (well, this time we knew it was a Niman Ranch meat-focused meal) and you don’t know WHERE you’ll eat until a few hours before mealtime. You only know WHEN. (The direct link to the Dissident Chef’s website is here).
There’s just something about that kind of setup that sets a diner’s mouth salivating. (not a pretty picture, I tell you).
Having eaten and reviewed a previous Dissident Chef meal, I was curious as to what I’d experience next–would he try something new? Would it be consistent with my previous meal experience? Would I last for 9+ carnivorous courses? (At the end of our meal on Sunday, the diners were sprawled across the couches and floor in the living room, giddy with full stomachs and food coma). And I was curious as to what Connie and Susan’s opinions would be.
(Not to mention that Michael Bauer, the SF Chronicle’s food critic, blogged about the Dissident Chef preceding the dinner nights–it was definitely a topic of conversation amidst the diners).
We ate on separate nights–Connie and Susan dined on Saturday night with 40+ diners (in a residence, with a residential kitchen, something to keep in mind–and they sat at the same table). I dined on Sunday night, with 12 diners in the same residence. Needless to say, this affected mood and kitchen pacing, etc., as you will read in the interview that follows.