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Mistral Tonight!


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I have been horribly remiss in describing our dinner at Mistral. Katie still has the notes, but I will try to get started.

We were seated by the new Dining Room Manager, Rene. He is very professional and handles everything quite smoothly. The place was absoutely packed when we got there. The place was completely full. They even had to use the table that is normally for staging wine, wine glasses, etc.... I am glad they are doing such great business!

The sommelier, Kevin, took our orders (7 course chef's menu) and suggested a bottle of wine over the pairing. It was a 2002 Pride Merlot that he was very excited about. It was really great. Huge fruit and it stayed interesting throughout the meal. Thanks Kevin!

Olive oil poached shrimp w/ green gazpacho, fennel, pine nuts, pancetta, and green apple sorbet- This was a huge winner. It is one of the best openers I have had from Chef William. It was an incredible combination of flavors, textures, and temperature. The shrimp were slightly warm, sweet and fragrant from the olive oil. The gazpacho was cool and fresh; the added pancetta and pine nuts added a heartiness to the dish. Finally the green apple sorbet had a slight tang and elevated the dish another level with the texture and temp of the sorbet.

That dish rocked.

Red Snapper w/ Pea "Stew"

The "stew" was a very light pea broth with rice, fava beans, basil, herbs, and cherry tomatoes. It was nice and fresh tasting. The snapper was the most moist I have ever seen a piece of fish. It did not leak juices either, it was just really really moist. This achievement combined with the impossibly crispy skin was quite the testament to the skill in the kitchen.

Halibut w/ figs, onions, mushrooms, eggplant, passion fruit sauce, and vanilla oil.

I had been admiring this dish go by our table for other diners for some time. The color of the fish was so beautiful. The top was a crisp golden brown and there was a distinctive line that switched to a creamy white.

The dish was a very nice blend of rich sweetness and the exotic vanilla/passionfruit flavors. The halibut had a nice complimentary sweetness and also the nice salty crust. I loved the addition of the onions and mushrooms to enhance the savory side of the dish.

Foie gras w/ apricot sauce and crispy apple

Yum, this dish would have even been good without the crispy apple. The apple was great! It offset the smooth textures of the sauce and foie. I want more.

Oregon Lamb w/zatar and tarragon; potato puree, red peppers, cauliflower, cherries, and olive praline

Wow. William generally does a version of this dish and it is always very very good. This was the best yet. They really amped it up with the addition of the cherries and the olive praline. The olive praline was off the hook. It was this incredible crunchy texture; with a huge savory burst. He keeps imporoving on this and I love it.

Cheese!

I love cheese and Mistral always has a very nice interesting selection. Unfourtanetly, I did not bother to take notes on what we had. Yum, though, Yum.

Molten Chocolate cake w/ hazelnut caramel sauce; strawberry sorbet, mint ice cream, and vanilla ice cream.

(comic book guy voice) Best dessert ever.

I still don't know how they get this dessert so perfect every time, but it is so good. The ice cream as always was so bright and clean tasting. I loved every bite.

One interesting thing about dessert though, is that every time I have been to Mistral, we get the same dessert, albeit in different variations. That cake, however, is always there. Before dinner, I was thinking about this and sort of wishing that Chef William would do something else. The problem with that wish though is that the dish is so perfect. When I am eating it, I never want to eat anything else...ever. It is a nearly impossible act to follow. I feel as if I received anything else that I would run back into the kitchen and search around for hidden molten chocolate cakes.

I actually spoke with the Chef de Cuisine, Charles, about this after dinner. He did indicate that Mistral is looking to step up their game in the dessert field. I dont even know if I want them to change it...I fear change. :smile: But if they can make a molten chocolate cake that frigging good, god knows what else can come out of that kitchen.

Overall, If you havent guessed already, I had a fantastic time and cannot wait to return. They certainly seem to be improving and it is great to watch the evolution.

Ben

Gimme what cha got for a pork chop!

-Freakmaster

I have two words for America... Meat Crust.

-Mario

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Oh, also FYI

Mistral is not providing food to the club next door.

The club next door was not too bad, I could barely hear the music when the dining room got quiet. This might have been a problem a year ago, but the packed dining room provided enough general background noise so it was not noticed at all.

:smile:

Ben

Gimme what cha got for a pork chop!

-Freakmaster

I have two words for America... Meat Crust.

-Mario

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We are planning a special dinner with friends from out of town. Have never been to Mistral but are considering it for this event. Could anyone compare it to Rovers (we had a wonderful experience there a few weeks ago)? Also, are the two restaurants comparable in price?

Thanks

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I cannot compare it to Rovers (I wish I could and hope to do so sometime soon), but price-wise you are looking at about $75 per person for food. Wine as you know can vary all over the board.

Thanks. That is much less than Rovers, at least compared to our one experience - much less. But it was worth it!

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We ate at Mistral Friday night. The other three in the party had the Chef's menu; I was a glutton and went for the Mistral Experience. The main or only difference between the two is that ME has an additional fish course. I neglected to take notes on the courses :sad: and I don't think anything except the dessert was the same as what Shielke reported.

When we arrived at 6:30 the restaurant was entirely empty. I'd say it got up to about 2/3 full later in the evening. We spent just under 4 hours there and had a very pleasant evening. Cost came out to around $175/person; this included wine pairings and a pretty good tip.

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If you do wine, expect to pay much more than $75 pp. My previous estimate is based on food cost only.

Mr Toast, I am suprised you only got one more course, the ME should have been 9 courses to the Chefs Menu of 7. Perhaps everybody else got one more?

Gimme what cha got for a pork chop!

-Freakmaster

I have two words for America... Meat Crust.

-Mario

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We had our first dining experience at Mistral last week with two guests from out of town. Excellent food, as we expected. I must say, however, that the experience was marred by a rather annoying, intrusive waiter who seemed to think that he was the reason we were there. While I do not mind descriptions of the menu items and possible wine pairings, his were way over the top. He seemed obsessed with his personal knowledge of wine and proclaimed it rather loudly, which must have annoyed other guests. I noticed the same when he served other diners.

Three in the party ordered the same menu while the fourth selected one with fewer entrees. The waiter proceeded to lobby for all having the same, as the service would then be even. Several refusals, including a rather firm final one, were required to get him to accept the 3 and 1 arrangement. One member of the group is well versed in wine selection and chose a particular bottle. The waiter arrived with the bottle but not the year listed. When this was pointed out, he left and came back to say that they were out of the year listed. Frankly, I suspect he knew this in the beginning but tried to pass it off, hoping we would not notice. Very poor form.

The final straw: At the conclusion of the service, the waiter arrived at the table with a bottle of sherry(?) and TWO small glasses, offering a gratis after dinner drink "for the gentlemen". (We were two men and two women). We just stared at him for a few moments and firmly said, "No thank you!".

Our expectations for Mistral were high, but I must admit that this experience left us unlikely to return.

Edited by SeAAttle (log)
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We had our first dining experience at Mistral last week with two guests from out of town.  Excellent food, as we expected.  I must say, however, that the experience was marred by a rather annoying, intrusive waiter who seemed to think that he was the reason we were there. <snip>

The final straw: At the conclusion of the service, the waiter arrived at the table with a bottle of sherry(?) and TWO small glasses, offering a gratis after dinner drink "for the gentlemen".  (We were two men and two women).  We just stared at him for a few moments and firmly said, "No thank you!".

:blink: Egads! This is one of those those episodes that would have me scouring the check for his name and writing a -very- terse letter to the owner and the chef.

Anita Crotty travel writer & mexican-food addictwww.marriedwithdinner.com

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The final straw: At the conclusion of the service, the waiter arrived at the table with a bottle of sherry(?) and TWO small glasses, offering a gratis after dinner drink "for the gentlemen".  (We were two men and two women).  We just stared at him for a few moments and firmly said, "No thank you!".

I am shocked by this. I hope you will call and/or write to the chef about this incident (and the whole meal being disrupted by the waiter's behavior). If he's going to continue to work at Mistral he needs some serious retraining.

Hungry Monkey May 2009
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Mistral is not providing food to the club next door. 

See Sound Lounge, right? I spotted a blurb in the Seattle Weekly last week that said SSL does not have a kitchen and the food is cooked at Mistral; I think it mentioned a quail dish available in the bar. Not sure who's right here, just thought I'd pass it on.

Hungry Monkey May 2009
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  • 5 months later...

We received a gift certificate to Mistral for Christmas this year, and last night used it to take a friend out for her birthday.

We went for the chef's menu, with boyfriend and friend getting the wine pairings and me abstaining.

The presentation of the food reminded me a lot of Union, but I liked the bolder flavors here better. Service was also better, but a bit hover-y early in the meal when we were the only people in the restaurant.

Neither boyfriend or friend were particularly impressed with the wine pairings, so we'd skip the wine next time, and just enjoy the food.

Standout dishes were the English pea soup with a perfectly seared scallop (I ate the whole dish in silence, and boyfriend noted that my silence can indicate that something is so good, I'm focusing all my attention on eating it) , the lamb with an assertive buttery potato puree, and the vanilla and cherry brandy ice creams that accompanied the desserts. :wub:

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Looks like they are doing a spring clean/paint. Paper on the windows the other day - but I think it was just for protection.

Maybe they will get rid of the salmon "art" :wink:

Practice Random Acts of Toasting

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  • 5 months later...

Had another awesome meal at Mistral last night. It has been way too long since we had last been, but we have made it tradition to go to Mistral on our Aniversary so we finally made it in. God I love that place.

Dinner-

I am trying to remember it now and it is a bit fuzzy since I didnt take notes so I am going ot hit you with the highlights:

Hamachi & Kampachi Tartare w/ pinenuts and cucumber water- great opener as always, the toasted pinenuts were very present and played nicely with the smooth fresh fish.

Fluke (I think) w/ shaved asparagus, green olives, and I forget the rest, I think there was a slice of lime!- I remember this being a very bold dish that worked very well. Kudos to the chef.

Diver Scallop corn chowder w/ carrot cloud- The scallop alone is worth the price of admission. Just some top notch cooking and top notch ingredients.

Lamb, potatoes zatar spice- you all know the potatoes. Need I say more?

Spiced Mango puree w/ lavender ice cream- the mango was great, slightly spiced and quite interesting. I think the dish had lavender ice cream, but I am pretty fuzzy at this point.

We also had some great wines to accompany the dinner, the pairings were just great. I always forget how great a good wine pairing can be, but I was reminded last night.

Mistral News-

There is a brand new branch of Mistral in Bangkok! Mistral is a chain now. :P William has been working very hard between the two locations to what appears to be great success.

Look for a future Seattle based project coming up. Sweet.

-Ben

p.s. I just started working downtown. Lunch is much more possible!

Gimme what cha got for a pork chop!

-Freakmaster

I have two words for America... Meat Crust.

-Mario

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Also to finally clear this up: Mistral never provided food for Sea Sound Lounge. A couple employees did a brief stint in Sea Sound's kitchen, but it didn't work out in the long run.

Also, the salmon are gone (I kind of liked them though), new artwork is up.

Gimme what cha got for a pork chop!

-Freakmaster

I have two words for America... Meat Crust.

-Mario

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  • 3 months later...

I know quite a few people who have state they will not return to Mistral because of this particular server. He is no longer with Mistral. If he was the only reason that you choose not to return, you should really give it another chance. I know first hand that the current front of house is one of the best in the city. And the food is too good not to give it another chance!

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