Menu Tasting with Executive Chef Javani King

2 Girls Who Travel had the opportunity to attend a special media-only menu tasting Saturday evening at Dolce Ultra Lounge & Bistro with food prepared by executive chef Javani King.

Did we mention how much we love our jobs?

Dolce is a welcome change for the Cypress area, located northwest of Houston. The upscale dining and lounge venues catering to a mature crowd aren’t as plentiful in the suburbs as they are in the more centrally located areas of Houston.

Dolce’s interior makes you feel like you’re in Midtown, without battling the traffic to get there. It exudes a very sexy vibe. Dim lighting, dark furniture and a bar that spans the length of the building … not to mention clean restrooms – hey, that’s important. Dolce gets it right.

 

The establishment recently moved to seven-days-a-week operation, added a lunch menu and has several themed days (i.e. $2 Tuesdays, Comedy Wednesdays, Zydeco Thursdays and Poetry Lounge Fridays). Patrons can also get ready for a members-only cigar bar coming in the next couple of weeks, Dolce owner Al Rucker shared exclusively with Two Girls Who Travel.

And with the addition of executive chef Javani King and his awesome staff, Dolce is easily becoming the “go-to” spot for those who don’t want to travel into the loop.

The culinary creations included in the seven-course menu tasting (yes, we said seven) are from the mind of Chef King himself. King said he loves his new home at Dolce, partly because (in his own words) “Al lets me do what I want to do in the kitchen.”

And we couldn’t be happier. Check out pictures of the amazing food we sampled … and try not to drool.

Then, check out our exclusive interview with Javani at the bottom!

COURSE 1: Tuna Crudo, Peach Soy, Avocado, Cucumber, Toasted Peppers, Toasted Pumpkin Seed, Sesame

COURSE ONE: Tuna Crudo, Peach Soy, Avocado, Cucumber, Toasted Peppers, Toasted Pumpkin Seed, Sesame

COURSE TWO: Chipotle Glazed Hen, Charred Black Bean Corn Salad, Cojita, Arugula, Chipotle Aioli, Jalapeno Cilantro Crema, Plantain

COURSE TWO: Chipotle Glazed Hen, Charred Black Bean Corn Salad, Cojita, Arugula, Chipotle Aioli, Jalapeno Cilantro Crema, Plantain

COURSE THREE: Parmesan Crusted Sea Bass, Peach + Tomato Compote, Purple Quinoa Slaw

COURSE THREE: Parmesan Crusted Sea Bass, Peach + Tomato Compote, Purple Quinoa Slaw

COURSE FOUR: Crispy Pork Belly, Sweet Potato Gnocci, Brown Butter Sage Sauce, Fried Sage, Sriracha Honey Reduction

COURSE FOUR: Crispy Pork Belly, Sweet Potato Gnocci, Brown Butter Sage Sauce, Fried Sage, Sriracha Honey Reduction

COURSE FIVE: Braised Lamb Ragout, Wild Forest Mushroom, Shaved Carrots, Crispy Wonton Cannoli, Potato Puree, Hickory Smoked Bacon, Goat Cheese Crumble, Microgreens

COURSE FIVE: Braised Lamb Ragout, Wild Forest Mushroom, Shaved Carrots, Crispy Wonton Cannoli, Potato Puree, Hickory Smoked Bacon, Goat Cheese Crumble, Microgreens

COURSE SIX: Grilled Ribeye, Purple + Red Potato Hash, Heirloom Potatoes, Cipollini Onions, Fried Quail Egg, Cilantro Chimichurri

COURSE SIX: Grilled Ribeye, Purple + Red Potato Hash, Heirloom Potatoes, Cipollini Onions, Fried Quail Egg, Cilantro Chimichurri

COURSE SEVEN: Crispy Wafers, Dark Chocolate Drizzle, Caramel Popcorn, Candied Peanuts, Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, Bourbon Vanilla Caramel

COURSE SEVEN: Crispy Wafers, Dark Chocolate Drizzle, Caramel Popcorn, Candied Peanuts, Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, Bourbon Vanilla Caramel

3 Questions with Dolce Ultra Lounge & Bistro Executive Chef Javani King:

TGWT: What’s your favorite entrée?

JK: Roast chicken, mashed potatoes and green beans, believe it or not. That is my favorite meal. And if I want to make it a little fancy, I’ll make some type of gravy or cream sauce with it. If I’m at home by myself chilling, watching TV, all I want to do is eat some roast chicken and mashed potatoes.

TGWT: What was your most defining moment as a chef?

JK: Three years ago, winning at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. That was confirmation to me that I had made it. Another defining moment for me was when I was called to compete as a contestant on Chopped on the Food Network. It meant a lot after all the hard work I’ve put in and the stuff I’ve gone through to get to this level. A lot of chefs sit in the background cooking, hot and making $10 an hour. When you actually get a chance to get in the limelight, it’s wonderful feeling.

TGWT: Have you ever had a disaster dish?

JK: (laughing) Don’t ask me to bake anything. My grandmother’s lemon pie is the only thing I know how to do and that’s because I’ve seen her make it a million times and it’s been on several of my menus. But if you ask me to make a cake, I’m going to Kroger and buying one. If you want cupcakes, I’m going to Sprinkles. I’ll lie to you all day – have you thinking I was slaving in the kitchen for hours!

— Check out Chef King’s delicious dishes at Dolce Ultra Lounge & Bistro, located at 18039 FM 529, Cypress, Texas 77433. —

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