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The New Striped Bass


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has anyone been since scott conant took over the place as consulting chef. i hope i did not spell his name wrong.

i went in when guillermo tellez was chef there and the food was sub par. i would say average at best.

its a shame what has happened to that place over the last year and a half. from once being the hands down best restaurant in philly to now. just another starr restaurant. :sad:

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has anyone been since scott conant took over the place as consulting chef. i hope i did not spell his name wrong.

i went in when guillermo tellez was chef there and the food was sub par. i would say average at best.

its a shame what has happened to that place over the last year and a half. from once being the hands down best restaurant in philly to now. just another starr restaurant. :sad:

Was it ever not just another Starr restaurant since the purchase in December 2003?? Color me biased, but I think we did more there with no money to spend and a small crew of seriously committed folks than has ever been done since or possibly before. In the time frame just prior to the sale to SRO, I experienced a level of cohesion and committment from my cohorts that I hope to relive again at some point in my professional life. We were weaving gold from straw on a daily basis back then yet still finding time for meetings to pair new menus with wines for the Chef's Tables. It was a glorious thing. We had no money and were on a seriously short leash financially, yet managed to eke out some level of excitement and value for our guests, even as we watched our livelihoods die out before us. It was heartbreaking to live and to participate in, yet I hope we did our guests justice, in the end.

It hasn't been the same since.

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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  • 5 months later...

So i had the opportunity to go there this Friday (3/14/08) and we got the chef's tasting menu, with the specification that there be no pork in the food. so, of course, after the amuse bouche of some ceviche, we get lobster bisque with applewood smoked bacon. the server is pouring the bisque in front of us and telling us what's in it as i stop him after he gets to the bacon part - so they take the plates away from under our noses and hungry, hungry mouths, and we wait, and wait, for our first dish - it was about 1 1/2 hours after we got there that we actually got the correct, pork free, starter. so, while our server was incredibly gracious and had put in the correct dietary stipulations, the kitchen was having some issues - and this showed as our five courses came out in an uneven pace - with some dishes being separated by a time span of 45 minutes while others came out right after the other.

our first course turned out to be a canneloni (sp?) filled with crab, sitting on a bed of cabage and more crab in a gastrique type sauce - forgot to take picture of this as i was pretty hungry by this point (thank god for the bread service is all i can say). not that impressed - the sauce was so vinegary that it overwhelmed pretty much all the other flavors.

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this was the second course - i started eating it before i remembered to take a picture - sorry for the quality but i didn't want to use the flash. A pan fried red snapper fillet with angel hair in a tart sauce and a heart of palm and a smear of a curry sauce on top. so this was a special that evening and i have to say that i absolutely loved the red snapper- cooked and seasoned to perfection. also liked the flavor of the angel hair and the curry sauce - but this dish felt like three separate components of three separate dishes sitting on one plate - a real lack of cohesion and interplay. the curry sauce was nice but when i tried it with the snapper, i couldn't taste the fish, the spaghetti was nice but was, once again, overwhelmed by the curry sauce and where did the heart of palm come from? i mean, i liked everything on its own but it just left me feeling like i picked the food off three other dishes! and i wanted more snapper, damnit!

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salmon with a veggie ratatoille and lentil puree. not bad - the weird thing about this dish was that the salmon was crispy side down - why? I have no idea. and it had those stupid greens on top of it, which also graced every onther dish, and which, incidentally, added nothing to the entree. there was a green sauce on top of the salmon, too, but have forgotten what the server said it was, and quite frankly, that doesn't matter anyway since it was pretty tasteless. The veggies had a sweet and sour taste that was just a tad too strong to go well with the salmon and the lentil puree, was, well, forgetable.

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Fourth course - monkfish with wild mushrooms and truffle vinaigrette. This was the first dish of the evening where all the parts actually complemented each other. Very nice savory mushroomy flavor that didn't overwhelm the meaty monkfish. Three things though - the ever present little bits of greens strewn on the plate for no reason, the truffle in the vinaigrette was pretty superfluous since you couldn't taste it, and there were bits of dehydrated mushrooms that tasted like mushroom-flavored cardboard - not sure what they were supposed to do for the dish.

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palate cleanser - rasberry sorbet with a yuzu (i think) sparkling soda and rasberry inside - tasty and refreshing.

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dessert - coconut sorbet atop of chocolate covered poppyseed roullade - the cake was rich and flavorful but the coconut sorbet lightened it and turned it into the perfect end to a meal. Their pastry chef is no joke - the dish was really well balanced and a great interplay of flavors and textures.

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second dessert as a way of apology for the whole bacon lobster bisque thing - a trio of caramel - butterscotch toffee layer cake, creme caramel, and caramel ice cream. yum.

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