One incredibly luxurious, surprising bite—bitter chocolate brioche, foie gras mousse, and blood orange gelée, garnished with dusty-mauve micro opal basil. That’s what chef Casey Overton of the Loft restaurant at the Montage resort offered partygoers at Orange Coast’s restaurant-issue launch event Thursday night. Maybe it wasn’t really just one bite—who could resist snagging a second?
The chocolate brioche, lightly toasted, had not a hint of sugar. Way chocolatey, though. “Bitter is a flavor I think American food sometimes lacks—but with a little richness to pave the way, people really like it,” Overton said, joking that the dish was sort of a “farewell to foie,” as California heads inexorably towards the July 1 total ban on the duck liver. The blood orange gelée and the smooth foie mousse, plus the chocolate aroma wafting through my upper palate was almost like an inside-out, savory version of a chocolate-orange truffle candy.