Memories of Millennium
It’s difficult to think anything but pleasant thoughts while eating a homegrown tomato. ~Lewis Grizzard
When Lisa and I went travelling together in August—first to Portland, Oregon for the first-ever Vida Vegan Conference, and then to Oakland and finally San Francisco, California—one of the highlights of the trip involved a visit to Millennium for a five-course, heirloom tomato dinner, featuring local tomatoes that had been handpicked by Millennium’s very own staff.
Browsing the prix fixe menu online prior to our visit, Lisa and I knew we were in for a treat. That is, until we walked into the restaurant and discovered that it would be so much more.
The atmosphere is elegant and formal, and unlike any vegan restaurant I had visited before. The service was impeccable right from the start, as we were whisked past the fancy bar to a small table near the front window (we requested window light for better photos) and immediately asked if we would like flat water or sparkling.
We consumed the entire experience and it will be one we will remember for a lifetime. Here are the gorgeous courses we were served:
Amuse: early girl tomato and roasted pimenton tartare, crisp tomato skin, carpaccio of Aunt Ruby’s green tomatoes, grilled olive flatbread, tomato leaf aioli, smoky fig and tomato pate
One: Grilled peach and radicchio skewer made up of gold tomato and crisp polenta crouton “panzanella” with gold balsamic vinaigrette, ground toasted hazelnuts, fennel pollen and cacao nibs, basil leaves and basil oil
Two: Fresh corn masa sope made up of cashew-achiote “cheese,” sweet and spicy tomato-habanero sauce, gold cherry tomato and nopales salsa
Lisa and I shared the third course options:
Three: Roasted eggplant and tomato provencal made up of tofu custard, cinnamon scented tempeh-walnut sausage, stewed tomatoes with chartreuse and caramelized fennel, chrysanthemum greens and pistachio-mint relish
Three: Shady lady tomato coconut masala made up of butterball potato-chickpea cake, roasted lobster mushrooms, cauliflower, zucchini and romano beans, melon-cherry tomato salad and red onion pakora
Dessert: Marzano tomato-pineapple upside down cake made of roasted gold blossom and aged black garlic ice cream, candied tomato and watermelon relish, jalapeno-black garlic brittle and pink pepper anglaise
Thank you, Millennium, for warming the hearts and bellies of vegans around the world.