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Everything posted by Midwesterner

  1. I also initially read the second starter mentioned above as "pickled greens," but the menu actually reads "picked greens"---an odd choice of words for a simple item, but in any event what we are talking about is a fairly straitforward salad, with the beets and grapes served to the side on a teardrop shaped plate (presented horizontally). I didn't want any fans of pickled greens rushing to Quince only to be disappointed . My husband and I had a pre-theatre dinner there two nights ago (a Saturday). Our reservation was at 5:30 and we were the second table seated. By 7 o'clock the restaurant w
  2. Just a digression, Ron--but do you really think of Miramar as a place for serious cuisine (as opposed to a fun evening with good but not great food)?
  3. I like Joy Yee's Noodle Shop on Davis (Pan Asian) and the Davis Street Fish Market a few doors down from that. Across from the Fish Market is a branch of a good local pizza chain, Giordano's (I like the stuffed pizza).
  4. Ronnie, This was our first visit. A friend was in town for a conference for just a couple of days and wanted to go to Alinea, so we had no choice but to go during anniversary week. I'm very glad the occasion "forced" itself upon us!
  5. At the end of our meal a few days ago, one of our servers asked us specifically which dishes had been our favorites. So the staff doesn't seem to mind a dish by dish critique.
  6. We had this in our anniversary "best of the best" meal two nights ago, and we asked the waiter how it was made. As best I remember, he said that the pear juice is frozen in a mold, unmolded and shaped a bit, then coated with a curry-butter emulsion that hardens around the cold orb. At room temperature the pear juice melts but the butter remains firm enough to form a shell. Note that this relatively fragile ball is served in a protective glass and you knock it back without ever touching it.
  7. Thanks for sharing your impressions. What was the table centerpiece? ← There wasn't one.
  8. A couple of other thoughts: the ginger table art present in the early descriptions of the restaurant was not there last night. Others have commented on the comfortable chairs. I sat for most of the evening on a banquette, provided with several plump cushions. I was encouraged to go ahead and sit on top of one of the cushions if I felt my seat was too low, but I was comfortable using the cushion to support my back--otherwise I would have felt too far from the table. When I changed seats because of the air conditioning issue described above, I got a chance to sit in one of the chairs: I act
  9. I went with a party of three to Alinea last night. We spent about 5 hours there and are very glad we went. I've read much of this thread but apologize if I am repeating anything that has already been covered or responded to. Our menu was "the best of the best"---the chef's favorites from the first year they've been open. My favorite dishes were the savory ones, especially those that featured "main course" type ingredients like kobe beef, squab, and bison (which I've never had before; it was excellent, very tender). I also liked the courses that used some kind of aromatic element to enhanc
  10. We are just back from Bruges, where we ate at Den Gouden Harynck (Michelin one star). It was excellent, very modern cuisine. It reminded me of the style of food served at Le Bernardin (we ate mostly seafood at Den Gouden Harynck, though there were other choices available) but with more aggressive flavors. Very light, bright food. We got into conversation with a couple at the next table who had been at De Karmeliet the night before. They much preferred Den Gouden Harynck, although I am not sure why. The man's comment was that none of the dishes "worked" at De Karmeliet.
  11. Ronnie, you will be glad to know we had an excellent dinner! I called at about 3 p.m. seeking a table for 6:30 and was told I could have one at 5 or 7:30. That surprised me a bit--I would have thought 7:00 was the prime reservation hour, not earlier. 7:30 was fine with us. When we got there the place was packed--all the bar tables full, and a few people with reservations waiting to be seated. We were offered our table within a few minutes (a square one in the main room fairly close to the front door). Previously we have been seated farther back in the restaurant or in a booth. The spot w
  12. I thought the portions were fine, but as you can see in my review of Woolfy's I didn't finish the duck served there, so my appetite may not be a good guide! I find that if I am having a starter as well, and considering dessert, that I don't want a mega entree. But since the place isn't cheap, I can understand wanting a bigger portion.
  13. We're stopping in there tonight--I will report on the summer fare.
  14. I was in Stratford a few weeks ago and ate at Woolfy's (about 20 minutes outside of town, in St. Mary's) and Bijou. We also had a meal in Niagara on the Lake at the Hilldebrand Vineyard. All of the meals were good. The best food, I felt, was at Bijou, but I could understand that the wrong table might leave you smelling of "kitchen." We were in the far back of the restaurant at a window banquette. Service was informal (20 something girls--acting students?) but I really liked my hailbut with curry-spiced vegetables. The atmosphere at Woolfy's was very pleasant. We were there during a thun
  15. I was in Phoenix last weekend for a large corporate meeting with most meals included. We got away on Sunday for brunch. Our info said that Pizzeria Bianco was open on Sundays and that Los Dos Molinas would be closed. The reverse turned out to be true. With lucky timing we were able to eat at the latter (it is quite far south) and still make our flight back to Chicago. I had a special platter of roasted garlic pork (with red sauce) that had the texture of pulled pork from North Carolina. My husband had chiles rellenos (also a special) that I could tell were spicy when he started needing t
  16. Even though we'd heard mostly good things about Los Dos Molinos, we specifically avoided it because everything we'd read about it suggested that it was very spicy and we're traveling with my young son who doesn't eat spicy food (and I'm not a fan of special ordering). We ended up trying quite a few decent places in the Phoenix area (dedicated threads will be started or bumped as fast as I can get to them). When it came to regional fare in Phoenix, the 3 names that I kept reading and hearing about were Los Dos Molinos, Los Sombreros and Richardson's. Oh well, maybe by the time we return, he'l
  17. We had dinner at Miramar last night (Thursday). Arriving just after seven, our party of three was able to be seated immediately at a fairly desirable table along the back wall of the front room. Next to us at a tiny table, a twosome was just finishing their meal. Several couple declined the table over the next half hour, making me wonder if I looked like an eavesdropper (I am!). Some wanted to sit in the back room, another man wanted more space, but he turned out to be a complainer who was never satisfied with the first thing offered to him (admittedly his servers did seem to be making som
  18. The dining highlight of our recent trip to the area turned out to be Lon's at the Hermosa. So many restaurants in Scottsdale are in strip malls or office plazas. Lon's has real charm and atmosphere. But it was the food and service that made me happy. I had a starter of antelope with blue corncake following by a plate they call "Cowboy Q"--it included a filet of Kobe beef, a barbecued country pork rib, a delicious deviled lamb chop, and flavorful, interesting Portugeuese sausage.
  19. I haven't seen any refereces to Cafe Terra Cotta in the Borgata in this thread. Has it closed? There is a web site for the original location in Tucson that doesn't mention the Scottsdale location, so I was wondering.
  20. We popped into Miramar last Thursday night with a party of 5 at about 7:15. The place was packed! We were told there would be a 20 minute wait, but that was shortened because we happened to fit perfectly into the middle of the communal table. At one end there was a party of 3 20-something girls, and at the other end a very burly all male group. They didn't look like professional football players, and one of them was significantly older than the others--a dad and his 5 strapping sons? At first we felt slightly squeezed in, but after the tradmark giant dripping candles were removed, we had
  21. I had the homemade lamb sausage with ratatouille and goat cheese, and I loved it. Better than the shepard's pie, to my taste (Heresy!). I'l also give a thumbs up to the feta cheese starter with hot banana peppers (truly hot). It's a good one to share, since you spread the warm cheese on baguette slices.
  22. Ronnie, when I had the chicken a few weeks ago the greens on the side were swiss chard, not spinach--maybe that why it seemed like unusually good spinach? :)
  23. PGC was packed by 6:30 on Sunday evening, I can report. There were a number of children there (uh oh) but the place was so crowded that I hardly even noticed them getting out of their seats and hanging on their parents. We were seated in a booth which I thought was rather nicer than being in the middle of the room (with all the kids!). We arrived at 5:30 and only about a third of the tables were full, yet it took a bit too long for our drink orders and then food orders to get taken. We weren't told about the specials until we'd been sitting with menus about 20 minutes, and the waitress clea
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