i should not have looked at the online menu before i went there. it wasn't the current one, and i was thinking that the pizza with pear, hooks blue cheese, medjool date and walnut would be very nice for dinner indeed. i hate it when that happens. i wonder why people would bother to post a menu online with all sorts of details and not update them when they change. yes, the site says it changes regularly, but it doesn't take long to update. oh, well.
anyway, the apps we got were interesting. one was a salad of green beans (there were supposed to be yellow ones, too, but apparently they were on vacation or something, there were none on the plate) in a very nice vinagrette, with blue cheese, pickled onion and beets on it. the flavor combos were nice and all and the presentation too, but i wasn't quite knocked out by it.
the warm beet tart, though, that was impressive. it had chevre in it, olives near it, a nicely crisp crust, and a few other flavor notes that we couldn't quite place, mostly in the sauce. oddly, the olives that were on the side kind of bound the whole combo together nicely. who would've guessed... olives and beets.
since most of the reviews highlighted the korean bbq bacon burger, someone did end up with that, and liked it. they weren't all over the moon about it, however. since i can't leave well enough alone and the blue cheese burger bits looked good, i got it with turkey burger instead. blue cheese and some sort of pesto- a nice flavor combo, sure (toss on a few carmelized onions, that'd be... wow), but the turkey burger was boring and had hints of gristle. the regular turkey burger had another kind of pesto on it, too... they should put it in with the meat perhaps. the bun was ok, but points for having it the correct size (i.e. slightly bigger than the burger).
someone did get a pizza... the 'bad breath special.' well, not it's official name, but it had potato slices, garlic scape (not like farscape... think garlic meets scallion...), onion puree, and i think it was blue cheese. probably the best dish of the lot, and it didn't scream 'hey, you're eating potato on a pizza!' like you may expect. it would've been better if it were crisper, but i suspect that hard to do with potatoes on it.
we all had fries (with that)... now, the last time around they were sage fries and quite good. this time just fries and were good the first few minutes when they were hot, then after that weren't that great. plus two-thirds of the orders were on the overdone side. the ketsup, by the way, is chili ketsup.
service was inattentive once we ordered food. a few more tables came in at that time, but the place was less than half full. we had to request bread (everyone else got it... yeah, say it with me... brk... the bread was decent with some nice flavored butter). the food took ages to get to the table, and we would've requested more bread while we waited but there was no nearby server at any time that bothed to look at the table, let alone check it.
other service quirks- some plates were taken after the apps were done, but others were left on the table to languish. they took silverware with the apps plates they did take and didn't bring a fresh setting. at the beginning of the meal, water was filled when it had maybe a third left. by the end of the evening, we poached glasses on our table that were filled at empty seats. when reciting the specials, no prices were mentioned. a small thing, but annoying.
the restaurant is impressive, interior and exterior (i mentioned the calming patio in the fryquest review- see link above), though the music's a bit loud. the room itself is also kind of an oasis, and apparently romantic as it gets darker. nice restroom, too. plus they also get major points for the whole fresh/local/sustainable sourcing of foods. kind of surprising to me, the number of kids there. it seemed more of an adult place, but more than a few tables had kids with them.
anyway, i will say i was a bit disappointed in the experience. maybe it was a bit of an off night.
© The bent sun as risen