Bright and early, I passed by the Lennon wall on a morning stroll down to the river.
Visited the Museum Kampa by the water with the giant alien crawling bronze babies. If you come up with a better description, have at it. Went inside and felt that sense of disconnection and ennui I all too often experience in the presence of contemporary art. Great bathroom though.
Ubered over to the town at 1:30 to meet Robin for lunch at the restaurant Field, (motto; Free Range Dining). Hatchets, rakes and scythes accent the spare décor. We have high hopes because of their newly awarded Michelin star. We decided to go for broke and did the tasting menu. What tipped me over the edge was the fact that they offer the option of pairing the courses with specially crafted non-alcoholic drinks. Oh wow!
And the entertainment began. Everything was indescribably delicious, and the presentation was half the fun. The service struck the right note of being both serious about the food and relaxed. The snails were served on something that looked like the country home of elves and fairies.
They poured smoke into one dish.
The fish was an abstract composition that put to shame what hung on the walls of Museum Kampa.
The cheese course came in a picnic basket that was put together like a Chinese puzzle, which we unpacked; cups, plates, fresh cheeses in a wooden box, and clasp-lidded glass jars.
Super delicious; crisp circles of meringue over a soft, sweetened curds atop dollops of plum and graham cracker crumbs.
Tasting menu with the non-alcoholic drinks pairing;
Snails, pumpkin, marrow, dried apples – Drink: Apple, red pepper, pumpkin
Woundwort, goat cheese, bread leaven, spruce – Drink: Celery, elderflower, bay leaf
Pike perch, mackerel, kale, kohlrabi – Drink: Plum, cranberry, dill
Fallow deer, black garlic, chokeberry, ginger – Drink: Red cabbage, cranberry, rosemary
Beef brisket, veal, potatoes, onion – Drink: Potato, cherry, thyme
Cheese from Krasolesí – Drink: Plum, Earl grey, juniper
Curd, plum jam, plum brandy, spruce – Drink: something unlisted but it came in two egg shell halves in a bed of growing chives.
Intense chocolate truffle, almond nougat ball – Drink: kickass espresso.
Replete, entertained, and satisfied we departed, astonished that it was now past 4pm. In charity with all the world, we impulsively stopped in the Alchemist Museum. This was unfortunate choice. Dim room, crammed with props so fake even poor lighting couldn’t disguise them. In a word, cheesy. The one thing worth seeing was a bookcase that pivoted, opening a secret door to an underground stone and brick passage that led to two rooms that sadly had still more inept props and a horrendously lame soundtrack (loud bubbling and clanking sounds). Don’t get me started on the cringe-worthy paintings of the Rabbi with his golem and Tycho Brahe. Robin and I made sotto voce cynical comments, so we wouldn’t spoil the experience of the only other customer, a gullible young woman who very badly wanted it all to be real. “Here is a beaker with real gold distilled from flowers! We have the original recipe for eternal youth, elixir for sale in the gift shop!” Oh please. Go home and watch Death Becomes Her, I wanted to suggest. It’s more realistic.
Make a slight detour to the Bakeshop (don’t judge) en route to the art supply store. I found a Czech-made sketchbook with toned paper, just the right size, while Robin did an audio tour of the old town. Walked back via a bridge not the Charles, listening to the Mala Strana audio tour. Followed signs to a little fabric shop at the back of a courtyard, and bought a dusty rose-colored silk scarf because, color.
Back in my room at the delightful Golden Well, I struggled a little with iPhoto, which seems to be my daily penance. No idea why some images download and others do not. I keep trying various methods to semi -effective avail. I keep swearing I won’t blow another evening trying to make that dog hunt, and then I fall back into the abyss. It will all be worthwhile later, when I have this record to remind me of my adventure.