VOSS, the fancy shmancy water company that serves its wares in sleek glass bottles, recently held a media dinner at FIG Restaurant in Santa Monica to get the word out about its 31 Days to Make a Difference campaign.*
Other than the fact that we were poured Voss water and were joined by representatives from the company, the focus this evening was squarely on Chef Raymond Garcia and the stellar food coming out of his kitchen. Subtlety is everything in situations like these.
Chef Garcia’s menu is built around seasonal ingredients and simple preparations. Every plate this evening was inspired by and composed with what Chef found at the local farmers market.
The first course, which was comprised of a gently poached Glaum Ranch hen’s egg with truffles and asparagus, gave us a glimpse of spring’s impending bounty.
Slicing my knife through the center of the egg flooded the scene with a sheen of yolk. The neat slab of bread was delicious, but not hefty enough to soak up everything the egg had in store. The asparagus spears took care of the rest.
The following course featured rabbit prepared four different ways. While the bacon-wrapped loin had an unfortunate mealy texture, the croquette, ribs, and offal-stuffed greens were dynamite. That croquette was really something else. Accenting the various cuts and brightening up the plate were the snappiest English peas from McGrath Family Farm.
The food went from good to excellent with this next course of Sonoma lamb. The lamb was prepared to absolute perfection—tender yet toothsome and so very juicy. The accompanying accouterments, including harissa, olives, green garbanzos, leeks, house-made Merguez sausage, carrots, and lamb hearts, were thoughtful choices and just as strong as the star of the plate. This dish totally hit the mark.
For dessert, we were served a Pudwill Farms‘ blackberry pavlova with vanilla mouse and blackberry sorbet. Well composed fruity desserts like this one leave my palate refreshed and my sweet tooth sated.
FIG has been on my list of restaurants to try for years now, so I am stoked that I finally had the opportunity to taste Chef Garcia’s superb cooking thanks to an invite from Voss. Only good things can happen when good food, good drinks, and good deeds come together.
101 Wilshire Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90401
There’s more to eat in Santa Monica:
- Bay Cities Italian Deli & Bakery – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Border Grill – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Brunch at Farmshop – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Dinner at Farmshop – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Drago Ristorante – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Fatburger – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Huckleberry Cafe & Bakery – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Rustic Canyon – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Stella Rossa Pizza Bar – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Sweet Lady Jane – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Tar & Roses – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- The Yard – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Vanilla Bake Shop – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Whist at the Viceroy Hotel – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- White Truffle Dinner at Valentino Ristorante
- Wokcano – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
- Yummy Cupcakes – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)
* 31 Days to Make a Difference is an international campaign designed to communicate the global need for clean drinking water solutions and help us increase awareness of the Voss Foundation, which is dedicated to funding this need in Africa.
The 31 Days campaign will begin nationwide on World Water Day (March 22, 2012) and run through Earth Day (April 22, 2012). By simply texting DROP to 89544 on their U.S mobile phone people can automatically donate $5 to the Give A Drop campaign.
There are more than 300 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa who lack access to clean water. Since 2008, the Voss Foundation has helped construct 32 water access points in five countries, changing the lives of more than 100,000 people in Kenya, Mali, Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Liberia.