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Last Friday the 8th of July, following a semi-gruelling week of work, I continued my ‘working’ day out of the office at the Cafe de la Leche hosted by the Casa de Campo hotel, where I enjoyed champagne and nibbles with friends, but even then ‘work’ wasn’t over as I tottered over to the Beach Club by Le Cirque and subjected myself to a tasting of a select few of their new menu items! Tough life! ô For photos and to find out more about the Cafe de la Leche, a charitable event hosted by the Casa de Campo hotel – click here. Before we began our culinary exploration of the new dishes, Massimo Carreta, manager of the Beach Club by Le Cirque took us on a tour of the kitchen, where we glimpsed a little behind the scenes action and met special guest chefs; Craig Hopson from Le Cirque New York and Michael Galata from Il Circo New York…….although we didn’t linger long in the kitchen we wanted to get cracking on the serious business of eating! And so with the compliments of the new head chef of the Beach Club by Le Cirque, Luca Banfi, Craig Hopson and Michael Galata we tried the followinf delicious dishes from the new menu:

Pizza Le Cirque My new favorite pizza, this ‘white’ pizza has prosciutto, arugula, baby tomatoes (red and yellow), mozarella, marinated artichokes and topped with a little parmesan and truffle oil. It’s great I love it!

Passion Fruit Conch Cocktail  Other than the fact that I refused to eat this (I’m irrationally scared of shellfish), Philip my acompañante, love it, in fact he describes it as “passionately playful take on a traditional conch salad.”

Pizza Casa de Campo Although not the most photogenic pizza, it certainly taste good and is a wonderful Caribbean twist on the traditional ‘Hawaian’ pizza. The unusual combination combines mango, chorizo and pint pesto for a flavor quiet unlike anything you will have ever tasted before. A real winner!

Four Cheese Penne baked ‘en croute’  This surprising pasta dish is delicious…unhealthy and definitely not for dieters but its creamy full-fat indulgence! The sauce is a delicious mix of 4 cheeses (doh) and it’s baked with a pizza crust – which you can then use to eat with the pasta or to mop up excess sauce. It doesn’t get much better than that!

As we only went for a ‘mini-tasting’ those are all the dishes we tried, but the Beach Club be Le Cirque has added a number of other additional delicacies to it’s menu, such as: • Veal medallions with piperade, roasted purple potatoes, Brie and almond pangrattato • Lamb duo: grilled lamb chops, plantain gnocchi, leg of lamb ragout with cherry tomatoes, roasted zucchini and goat cheese • Duck pappardelle with kabocha squash • Tropical coconut seafood soup

We hope to try these very soon!

Here are a few additional photos of our evening at the beach club by Le Cirque in Casa de Campo: