Lunch at The French Laundry, in Pictures

I've written about the French Laundry before (visits one and two). This post is now two months overdue and I've struggled with what new to say about our lunch in May. While my giddy, over-the-top awe has mellowed over the course of our five meals there (which have included a few dishes that didn't quite make it into the stratosphere), my general opinion that it offers the best fine dining experience in the US remains unchanged. That said, my compulsion to return as often as possible has waned as the price and familiarity have increased, so with the difficulty of assembling a party of four on 3 days' notice willing to drop that kind of cash, I nearly took a pass when Chuck offered me a last-minute reservation in May. But, we did manage three people, it was a good time of year for produce, and a nice celebration for the week before starting my new job, so off we went! Rather than rehash the oohs and awes or detract from the memory with a few nitpicks, I offer notes from our latest meal through photos.