Saffron -- OMG
I took Katy to Saffron last night for a belated birthday dinner. What a magnificent meal. We were both literally paralyzed by the menu -- we wanted to order everything.
For appetizers, we shared both the quattro formaggi and porcini ravioli, and the calamari in mango glaze. While I would not order them together again, since the flavors were not really complimentary, both were excellent. The ravioli, in a porcini truffle broth, was earthy and delicious. The mango glaze on the fried calamari livened up what is a fairly tired dish, and the squid was tender and succulent.
Katy had the seared ahi tuna with miso pad thai. The pad Thai turned out to be a bit spicy for her, but I loved it.
I had the cioppino, and I can't say enough good things about it. Huge diver scallops, shrimp, mussels and a panko crab cake were surrounded by a spicy tomato broth with oysters, bits of chorizo, chicken, and lobster mash. Spicy, with a tinge of Latin influence.
We did not have room for dessert, but perhaps we can make it next time.
Service is quite off; not enough to be bad, but we didn't feel like the staff quite had their act together. Long waits without being checked on, an empty water glass -- minor stuff, but noticeable.
It's also an incredible value. With the two appetizers, two entrees, two glasses of wine for me and one of those fruity concoctions that Katy loves so much, our total pre-tip bill was just under $90. I've paid much more for much worse. Most of the entrees are in the mid-20s, and three are under $20.
I'm now kicking myself for never having made it to Soigne. But Saffron is a fantastic restaurant, and is way up on my list after just one visit.
Go. Go now. You won't regret it.
Well, you're right to be concerned -- not about the quality, which seems to be consistently great, but about ordering correctly. As I mentioned in the original post, the appetizers we ordered, while both excellent, weren't made for each other.
I think next time I'll order Latinish appetizer and entree, or Asianish, but won't mix the two. Very different styles.