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Dinner at Arnold Myint’s ChaChah, Chef’s Tasting Menu

January 19, 2011

Whenever you get the chance to sample a great chef’s creation, you should take it. If you are a food expert or just someone that enjoys the ritual of dining and sharing food with others (and why wouldn’t you be?), you’ll be in for a mindblowing experience. Well, that’s what I got to do when I visited Arnold Myint’s ChaChah during Nashville’s Restaurant Week. And at $30.11 per person for a 5 course chef’s tasting menu, this was honestly a steal! You can’t beat the quality of this food at that price. If you’re in Nashville or within driving distance (or a flight away), you owe it to yourself to make a trip down.

If you aren’t a native Nashvillian, you probably know Arnold from his time as a contestant on Bravo TV’s hit show, Top Chef. For us locals, he’s the beloved son of Patti Myint, the owner of International Market and Restaurant on Belmont Blvd, who has expanded his culinary skill to offer Nashville three great restaurants – PM, ChaChah, and Suzy Wong’s House of Yum.

Nashville food blogger extraordinaire, Beth got a group rounded up and we all got to enjoy Arnold’s incredible dishes. It was a pleasure to meet and dine with Erin, Carrie, Beth, and my sister, Zarna.

So without further adieu, here is one of the best meals I’ve ever had.

Course One: “The Salad”

Coriander crusted tuna with heirloom potatoes, tempura caperberries, arugula, and white balsamic vinaigrette

What a way to start a meal! The tuna was absolutely gorgeous. Everyone’s favorite part was the tempura caperberries which added great texture to the salad.

Course Two: “Breakfast”

Red quinoa, truffled mushrooms, bacon, asparagus, homemade toast, over easy quail eggs, clover honey, smoked paprika oil

This course may have been my favorite. If this is what Arnold makes for breakfast, I could eat it every single day. Perhaps this dish will be the reason that I start eating more quinoa. And with bacon, you can’t go wrong!

Course Three: “Prelude to Spring”

Roasted red pepper gazpacho, coconut milk, “shrimp on the barbie”, seared scallop, chimichurri, garlic toast point

Soup was right up my alley – it was smoky, peppery, and just overall delicious. The sweetness of the beautifully cooked seafood went perfectly with the soup. Apparently the name of the course was something the waiters didn’t want to say, so Arnold had to sneak it in. Kudos!

Palate Cleanser

Passion Fruit Sorbet

Sorbet mid meal? You won’t hear any complaints from this guy! I’ll take a pint, please!

Course Four:

Lamb chop marinated in ginger, lemongrass, & green herbs – parsnip, eggplant, artichoke barigoule, crispy lotus chip, cilantro yogurt, smoked paprika oil

I love lamb. Lamb chops are my favorite part of lamb to eat. And although it was a fairly classy meal, Beth and I definitely made sure there was nothing left on those bones…

Let me also say here that since we had a vegetarian at the table (Zarna), Arnold was very accommodating. Zarna got to eat this:

Eggplant-potato-carmelized onion pave, yogurt tzatziki, red pepper jam, crispy lotus chip, green herbs

A pave is a pasta-less lasagna. Zarna was kind enough to give me a few bites. Yum!

Course Five: “The Desert”

From left to right: Abuelita chocolate pots de creme, Cherry cobbler with buttermilk ice cream, Coconut flan with chai caramel

Jealous much? This desert trio was absolutely fantastic. They were all so good and everyone had their favorite. If pressed, I could eat that coconut flan all day long.

A great meal spent with some great friends. You can’t ask for much more than that.




10 Comments leave one →
  1. January 19, 2011 8:22 AM

    CHAI caramel?!? I’m so there! These courses looked wonderful. The breakfast intrigues me the most.

    • January 19, 2011 9:46 AM

      The breakfast was good….I’m kinda craving some right now!

  2. January 19, 2011 11:29 AM

    I would love to know what else Zarna had, but I’m certainly glad you got a photo of the pave. Though I’m not a huge fan of eggplant, so I was happy with the quinoa falafel.

    And I loved the flan!

    ps–FANTASTIC photos! I should have brought my big camera because the light was just not great for my Elph. Oh well!

  3. January 19, 2011 11:39 AM

    Wow, what a great recap this is!! Couldn’t have said it better myself!

    How in the world do you remember all of the descriptions/ ingredients?? I am so bad about that…if I don’t take notes, I can barely remember anything. Maybe you have a sharper memory since you’re 10 years younger than me 😉

    • January 19, 2011 11:52 AM

      The second I came home, I wrote down everything. Besides, Zarna said she was gonna post about chachah this morning, so I had to stay up to write the post!

  4. January 19, 2011 5:00 PM

    Excellent post, Vivek! Now excuse me while I wipe the drool off my monitor. Those dishes look incredible!

  5. January 19, 2011 5:24 PM

    So… now I’m wondering if I should opt out of the pots de creme and have the flan. Here’s hoping my dates let me taste theirs if we all get different things!


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