As you may know it has been a tough week for me...but it's Friday!!!! I made it! Everything came at us at once and at times the stress made me grumpy and kind of mean...poor Patrick! We both got through it though and in the end...aside from my back and eye issues...it wa a pretty good week.
I've been to the eye doctor this week and it turns out I have TWO lesions on my eye this time! My guess is that the second one was popping out on that day that I was struggling with the terrible light sensitivity. I also have lesions in my mouth this time which I did not have before so I have been given some pills to take...it is the same medicine as I put directly in my eye but in pill form! Crazy!
My back pain...well, it has changed. In the past week I have had very bad nerve sensitivity in my legs even though my flexibility is increasing. I am unable to stand in one place for very long but I can walk...i am unable to sit for very long but I can lie down on my side. As a precaution the doctor is ordering an MRI...it will take some weeks until I can get it so if I drastically improve he will cancel it but if I regress then it is in place to see what is going on. The pain leaves me irritable at times but I am trying to be even more careful so I can heal up.
I was able to go to my daughters "Vinterfest" yesterday because I did not have to sit and could keep moving. It is basically a big outdoor bonfire in the snow with all the kids sledding...very Norwegian to be having a picnic in the snow!
I other news, if you read my status update a couple of days ago you probably saw that the M*chelin Guide came out and we were not graced with a star again this year. Interestingly enough we were still kind of up in thehoopla surrounding it though. I was sure that since the M*ichelin guide was coming out this week that the paper would put off printing our review til next week but instead they printed it along side all of their coverage about the Guide. The Starred restaurants got a combined two page spread and we got our own two page spread. ( and a great review) It looks like the paper thought we might be getting a star and was holding the article till the Guide was released. They would then have the scoop since are still emerging from being unknown. There is a section at the end of the article in the actual paper that basically says "If you like Michelin type places then you will like the Fritzner". As much as it stinks not to get a star it feels good to be put into all the hupla anyway! The people who work in the hotel we work in are so thrilled for this article.
Here is a link to the article as it is printed in Norsk:
Below Patrick has roughly translated it so you can know what it says...keep in mind that Norwegian and English don't directly translate but you'll get the idea...there were a lot of pictures in the actual paper but you can see some on the link above. The "Mystery Box" heading basically means we are the unknown or the secret place here in Oslo. Here is the translation of the whole article:
"A delicious taste of things to come.
The mystery box
Julius Fritzner in the Grand Hotel is a time machine where you can dream yourself away to its former glory. Had it not been for a modern touch on the plate and food.
What you get:
5 Environment: Timeless elegance with dark walls, stylish paintings and heavy, classical furniture.
5 Menu: 3 -, 5 - and 7-course menu with Norwegian ingredients at the base. Comprehensive wine list featuring classic castles and producers alongside wines from the New World.
5 Food: Classic ingredients with a modern touch, delicately scattered, delicious flavor combinations, never too large portions.
6 Services: Discreet, knowledgeable, attentive, always present even when it was full.
4 Prices: 3 courses 615, 825 5 courses, 7 courses 995, 575/785/950 family of Wine packages, exclusive to the Wine packages 5-/7-retter 1295/1645. (prices in krone)
- Do you think they ate like this a hundred years ago? My friend looks around in the elegant room. Beside us sits a few businessmen talking quietly over the starter, while the waiter fills the glasses from a large jug. Slightly further away is a larger company starting with the first of several speeches, without either making significant noise between the trepanelerte walls.
Restaurant Julius Fritzner is not the place where you feel to get up and sing drinking songs with a pint glass high above your head. The entire premises spirits of tradition and discreet bourgeois charm.
- The waiter reminiscent of an old fashioned butler in a Wodehouse book, my friend whispers to me at the table while the men at the next table get their first main course. I nod gently.
Tradition with a twist
We have just finished the first of our five dishes, Arctic char and Norway lobster with avocado cream and a hint of pear and curry in the vinaigrette is carefully prepared. On the edge of the plate with pieces of fish and crayfish is a small circle of mousse and a "pearl" of the bulb placed as a small dot. Chef Patrick O'Toole and his staff like to equip the courses with such small "punctuation" - or shall we call it the signatures.
Shh. Julius Fritzner call the devotional mood. While the food will make you cheer.
They contribute at least to raise the meal. As with the two small amuse bouche starting the meal and serve as a "clean" of taste buds between the main dishes: First, a soup of black truffle with crab and crayfish mousse next to the appetizer, later lemongrass soup topped with a deep red Cabernet sauvignon sorbet in preparation for the next flight.
Dishes and ingredients divided neatly between fish and meat, both light and dark: Sautéed turbot with scallops and a little tart of foie gras with celeriac puree, topped with sitrongress froth. A stunning range of guinea fowl with parsnip and quail egg and a Blini made of couscous.
The kitchen knows how to be able to provide the traditional ingredients with little twists that elevates the course from being approved to be something extra. For example, you remember the pumpkin and the thick reindeer filet, the reduced Cabernet sauce, and thrones of accessories, food and accessories are like little sculptures on the plate.
In the kitchen stage is small artwork.
Both the presentation and flavor combinations are paramount, and the local atmosphere enhances the experience of being beyond time and space.
Throughout the meal the waiter has a perfect timing, when it comes to refill the glass of wine or switch to the next flight - we've made it safe for the uncertain and gone for the Wine packages that are elected to the dishes. Individual stays consistent with the classic wine country and the grapes, without in any way a disappointment. If you are more adventurous, there are plenty of exciting (and expensive) options from producers in the New World.
Wine cabinets and wine list is extensive with something for every budget, even though many are in the upper layer cost.
Passion fruit dessert with macadamia nuts and candied kumquats is both appealing to the eye and a worthy ending to a meal that celebrates the sweet life. But we are not quite finished yet: We have a selection of petit fours before the bill arrives on the table: Nearly 3500 krone for an aperitif, five dishes and Wine packages where we have had enough of the glass without taking over. The price level is in the upper tier, but so is the food, environment, presentation and service.
Julius Fritzner manages to combine tradition and innovation in delicious ways. It bodes well for the next 100 years. "
yea...we are pretty happy with that!