Tuesday, December 14, 2010

$385/person, so just translate it right.

Since I am soon off to Las Vegas, I am having fun looking at all the restaurants. I'm NOT going to be eating at. Like Joël Robuchon at MGM Grand. It looks interesting, I admit. I mean, a 16-course tasting menu? I've never even heard of such a thing! At $385/person, I'm not interested in trying it. I mean, that's round-trip ticket almost anywhere in the US. Or an upgrade to business class from economy on an overseas flight. If I am going to indulge, let it be on something longer lasting! Or maybe a year of car insurance. Ha, which I am saving by not having a car, I win!

French menu items are traditionally worded very flowerily. To the point that distinguishing what the actual dishes are may be difficult. Every time I've seen an English translation, it either tries to be flowery and fails or goes for more straight-forward, but then leaves off actual elements of the dish (not just the extra words.)

Just the first one is all it took : Caviar on a fennel cream served as a surprise
Oh, really? As a surprise? But it's on the menu! How is it going to surprise anyone? The French version, Le Caviar en infusion de corail anisé, en surprise, implies it's going to be stuffed, or covered. If you're interested, this girl took pictures of almost the whole meal: http://cravingsofafatgirl.com/blog/?p=1693 She shows it was served in a cute little tin, with caviar on the top with the fennel cream (& something in between) underneath.

But, really, is the poor translation supposed to be for 'authenticity'? Or do they require the chef to do it himself and lock him away in the kitchen so long that he doesn't ever find out the proper English equivalents. Maybe it 'adds to the mystique'??? Whatever, I ain't buyin.