Back in May, I went to dinner in Chicago with my close personal friend Mike Keiser, the founder and owner of Bandon Dunes. The restaurant was Moto, which serves a four-hour tasting menu (see above) accompanied by fifteen different wines. Our “Spring Lamb” course was actually a tasting menu in itself: a thing of lamb paté, a thing of lamb sausage, a thing of smoked lamb shoulder, a thing of “baconized” lamb, a thing of leg of lamb, and a couple of other lamb-based things, all served on a chef’s cleaver. “Explosion” was a stick of dynamite made from white chocolate and filled with a syrupy liquid that I wouldn’t have minded drinking a quart of, plus a cherry-stem fuse—and the waiter made it explode by dropping it on its plate. He said that my explosion was the best one he’d done so far, and that he was still working on his technique because the dessert was so new. “After Dinner Menu” was the actual menu printed on a slab of marshmallow, which was brought to the table in a saucepan of liquid nitrogen, then placed on top of three kinds of fruit and three kinds of mint and broken to pieces with spoon. Most surprisingly good thing: beet meringue.
The next day, Keiser and I played a round at Chicago Golf Club, which was built in 1895 and is the oldest eighteen-hole golf course in the United States. (The club was founded in 1892, on a different site.) The course was designed by Charles Blair Macdonald and later tinkered with by Seth Raynor, among others. There’s a convent next door, and one of the guys we played with told a funny story about a golfer who took a whiz in the bushes next to it, but I didn’t write the story down and now I don’t remember any of it. Take my word for it, though: that story was funny. C.G.C.’s motto is “Far and Sure,” which is also the motto of Royal Liverpool Golf Club, where Macdonald had lots of friends. In fact, when Macdonald’s new Chicago friends realized how much they loved golf he had his old Liverpool friends send him six sets of clubs.
Keiser’s newest course is Cabot Links Golf Course, in Nova Scotia. Ron Whitten, who is Golf Digest’s architecture editor, has written an article about both it and Donald Trump‘s newest course, which is in Scotland. Whitten’s article will be in the February issue, and while you wait to read it you can watch this video:
The video was made in October by Don Snyder, whose company is called World Golf Movies. Snyder worked as a caddie at the Old Course, among other places, and one day he had the idea of creating video tours of the world’s best courses. Several of his videos are available as apps in the iTunes store, and more are coming. Perry Golf, the tour company, is a partner of his. “Starting next season,” Snyder told me in an email recently, “we will also shoot little fifteen-minute movies of Perry Golf’s clients out playing on their journey, and then sitting down in a pub and talking about what their trip has meant to them.”