The vibe at Bos Taurus—classic steakhouse, updated and seared with Bend style—means quality without stuffiness, and a beefy dose of fun. Go decadent with the foie gras terrine and move on to the wagyu.
Chef George Morris’ take on a foie gras terrine is a perfect example. He sous vide cooks Hudson Valley foie gras, vacuum sealing it in a pouch, immersing it in precisely heated water. The duck delicacy never touches a heated metal pan, flames, steam, water or smoke, thereby achieving optimum flavor and texture. Combined with cream, gelatin, salt and a bit of sugar, it’s set in a French terrine mold overnight.
The sublimely smooth, rich result is dusted with crumbled pistachios and watercress powder. The counterpoint is Oregon Coast cranberries three ways: a cranberry gastrique, sous vide cranberry and cranberry maple pudding. It’s framed by watercress petals, and grilled sourdough is the crunchy vehicle for it all. Morris sets the dish beneath a glass dome filled with maplewood smoke—the foie gras smokes en route from the kitchen to you.
“When you get it to the table, you can’t actually see the dish,” said Morris. Lifting the dome, a veil of smoke wafts away, revealing it. The aroma is the first part of the experience, building anticipation of the first savory, sweet, crunchy bite.
Morris pairs it with the Tonic 2 Old Fashioned, with Bulleit Rye, Tonic 2 (Tahitian vanilla, chamomile, maple syrup) and Angostura orange bitters. The orange complements the dish’s cranberry. The rye and foie gras share flavor profiles. Both have as an ingredient Noble barrel aged maple syrup.
“The high-octane alcohol and whiskey background cuts through the richness of the foie gras, cleaning up and lightening the palate, and the foie gras’ richness mellows out and softens the drink,” he said.
Another big experience on a small plate is the Japanese Miyazaki A5 wagyu beef raised in the Japan’s Miyazaki prefecture. It’s renowned worldwide for its fat marbling, tenderness and flavor. Morris seasons it with hickory-smoked sea salt and black, white, pink and green peppercorns, searing it on a 550°F cast iron flattop custom stove to medium-rare. It’s sliced kimono-silk thin, so delicate that it is plated and served with elegantly shaped seven-and-a-half-inch culinary tweezers. “It literally melts in your mouth,” said Morris.
A big cabernet with bold fruit and strong tannins stands up to the luxurious fat of the beef, and General Manager David Oliver recommends the 2015 Paul Hobbs CrossBarn from Napa Valley.