After telling us how a couple can pig out at Le Bel Age restaurant (June 16) for only $64-$135 (food only), Ruth Reichl wants to make certain that if we kulaks ever save enough money to do it and can get a reservation, we need to know amuses gueules are “little tidbits,” coulibiac (her word for kouliabaka ) is a “sort of fish Wellington,” and duxelles are “minced mushrooms.”

Then she informs us the Russian word for hors d’oeuvres is zakuskis .

Seriously, Ruth, what would you think of a Russian food writer telling her readers the plural of a butterbrot was “sandwicheses”? And how about “hamburgerses” and “french frieses”?

Hors d’oeuvre, starter or appetizer in Russian, is zakuska ; the plural is z akuski . No s .


And for $64-$135 (food only), I’ll mince my own damn mushrooms!


Fountain Valley