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[DFW] Rouge


nocturnalsunshine
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It was a slow day at work Friday. After most of my tasks were done I hit Guidelive and Egullet to find a place to eat.

I live off Central and Beltline, so I'm really close to all of the hotspots; nothing is more than five minutes in either direction, even faster if we don't see cops.

SO, I always pick three restaurants to eat at in case one is too packed or no parkng can be found. We picked Rouge as our first stop and SCORE, there were a handful of parking spots.

Just my girlfriend and myself. She has been hip to trying anything I cook or discover to eat so this was a good one, Spanish Cuisine from Basque.

The atmosphere is great. Rich red fabrics along the dark colored walls seems to pull the light from the candles on the tables upwards. Making the shadows come from below which adds to a the feel of a secluded Spanish village. We expected Antonio Banderas, or an even more spanish version of him, to come from the kitchen at any moment and challenge me to a duel for the love of my lady. He may have won because I was already having a torrid affair with our first dish.

Jamon and Queso Croquetta, Ham and cheese croquettes, Hot. They were light and crisp and the cheese inside was perfect. I later found this is standard fare for tapas and a recipe as well. After I recover I will attept this for sure for entertaining.

Then a Terrine of Eggplant, mushrooms and red peppers, Cold. It was served as a pie slice and was crisp and each layer of flavor could be tasted. My only wish is that it was served maybe rectangular sliced so it would be easier to eat. But taste overshadows that completely.

Next was Pan Boli, a simple flat bread rubbed with a tomato mix with garlic and other spices, Hot. I was sure that I could recreate this when I read it on the menu, but after tasting my memory was apparently wiped and I was reduced to teenage girl phrases of OMG OMG.

Our next dish was Potatoes and Serrano ham in oil and herbs. We live in Texas, pig is my default meat for goodness sake, but it never tasted like this. At first I could taste a wild flavor in it and it was almost overpowering, but as I ate it with the oil and herbs on the dish they cut away the wild taste making it seem sweeter and as bad as it sounds I could taste country. My girlfriend could not believe how different this ham tasted as compared to good old Thanksgiving ham. The potatoes were just regular russet potatoes, what my mom calls Ice potatoes. They were just quartered long ways and with the skin on. The oils and the ham flavor penetrated through the top few layers of the potatoe but the inside was fluffy and moist and the combination of ham in your mouth with it was very nice. Simple and homey meat and poatoes, but so different and much more flavorful.

Last we had the winner. Stay tuned for your Ghetto moment. Seared Chicken with capers and wine reduction. The chicken was very moist and full of the flavor of the reduced sauce on its crisp outside. The capers made a nice salty explosion when they made the joyus journey from juice to mouth. Now, the bread service was ok, small garlicy biscuits a little too browned in some places but I am not expected to be wowed by bread service. However, Ghetto moment imminent, the sauce called to us. A shared glance at the biscuits was all it took, no words. I took a biscuit in hand and tore it, the method used was gentle hoping to expose as much of the fluffy interior of the biscuit as possible, disregarding only the crust. A deft movement and into the sauce it did dive, yes, the sopping had begun. Being a product of public shcools, my math could be flawed. But I calculate a little bit of Southern ingenuity + Flavors of Spain = A whole bunch of tasty We believed it a crime to our stomachs, the chef and my mama, to leave any sauce on that plate.

Full of the flavors of Spain we ended the meal there. Wonderful flavors, amazing atmosphere and a nice price just at 40 dollars for the two of us including a nice tip. It was not very crowded on a friday night, and that usually scares me. Makes me wonder if they are on the way out. But I would reccomend it for anyone who wants more than the standard fare but not pay much more than normal.

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Is it really considered "Ghetto" or impolite to use the bread to sop up sauce? I've done it a few times myself and did not really think much of it.

Great review; I wish we had a restaurant like that in Austin. I would vow to check it out next time I'm in DFW but I already have a long to-do list of Dallas restaurants.

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I grew up in the country and sopping that roll or biscuit was normal. I don't consider it impolite or Ghetto at all. Plus, it sounds like I need to check this place out.

It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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What a great write-up. I keep wanting to try different tapas places but we can never branch out from our maintstay, De Tapas in Addison. That said, just about everything you had at Rouge isn't on the De Tapas menu. I may have to hit this place next time we get a tapas urge (shouldn't be long).

De Tapas always seems empty at prime dining hours, too, but they get absolutely packed later at night, so maybe, hopefully, Rouge has the same type of business.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks for the report, nocturnalsunshine. I have eaten at De Tapas and Cafe Madrid and liked both, though I liked the ambience of Cafe Madrid better. Rouge is high on my list, and my undestanding is that they do more than tapas plates. All three places appear to be quite reasonably priced.

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  • 1 month later...

So we went here with some guests from out of town Saturday night. This used to be the Moroccan place (Marrakesh?) right across from the Inwood theater. It is, indeed, a very exotic layout.

Outstanding food. We had: fried monkfish, the ham and cheese "hushpuppies", potatoes with serrano ham, entremesses platter (serrano, manchego, olives, anchovies), spicy shrimp, crab-stuffed eggs, tuna escabeche, and sausage and mushrooms. Only the shrimp was less than spectacular. I really liked the fried monkfish, and the croquettes were a table favorite.

This is more refined than the rustic De Tapas, so each order really is best-suited for one or maybe two people.

The service, also, was very friendly, attentive, and accommodating.

Yet, sadly and frustratingly, the restaurant was, on a Saturday night, never more than a third full. If you're wanting to check this place out, go soon, both to give them a much-needed boost but also because they may not be around much longer :sad:.

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Yet, sadly and frustratingly, the restaurant was, on a Saturday night, never more than a third full.  If you're wanting to check this place out, go soon, both to give them a much-needed boost but also because they may not be around much longer  :sad:.

That bothered me as well,I wished it were a bit more crowded becuase I want them to do well. I plan on going back soon and get, oh, say, the right side of the menu.

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  • 1 year later...
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