Taking my best pal here next week for her birthday. First time there for both of us . She's a vegetarian that will eat some fish and I love seafood but will eat most anything. Please tell me about some winners on this menu. Thanks.
We went with friends recently, and these were among our winners!
Spicy bluefish cakes with a cucumber-mint salad
Seared sea scallops with orange butter sauce, golden raisins and toasted pine nuts
My husband had a Sockeye Salmon that is not on this menu but he said it was about the best he ever tasted.
The salads are wonderful. I don't usually order salads- except when Steve Johnson is in the house.
Shaved celery root & fennel salad with ricotta salata and pomegranate seeds
This one was so good, I hated sharing it with the rest of the table! Salad of endive, apples, duck confit, spiced walnuts and cider vinaigrette (I'll bet they would leave out the duck for your friend - it will still be great.)
Ditto the bluefish cakes. The grilled sardines are also wonderful, though my filleting technique is a little hit or miss -- I generally do one perfectly, then mangle the next. I see a vegetarian gnocchi on the current menu, which ought to be fine. There's often a vegetarian soup on the menu made with vegetable stock; the Rendezvous is a good place to get the soup.
Not sure how much longer they'll be on the menu, but I was at Rendezvous last night and was very, very impressed by the spicy bluefish cakes appetizer. The heat was perfect: peppery and fleeting, a perfect complement to the full-flavored bluefish, served with a little cucumber salad. One of the best dishes I've had out in recent memory.
I had the lobster and mussel chowder as a main, and it too was quite good; about a half dozen plump mussels and the meat from what looked to be a 1.25-lb. lobster in a savory, creamy broth with potatoes, cherry tomatoes, and some kind of spice oil. DC had the cod (or "codfish," as the runner insisted on saying) main, which sat on a bed of diced squash and brussel sprouts in a cider butter sauce, and was lovely. Agree that this kitchen has a deft hand with sea critters.
It looks like the skate is more of a summer item, but it was fantastic when it was on the menu. I've also had some other kind of white fish there, and a scallop starter. They do good work with the seafood. Having had a somewhat boring shrimp ceviche there, I'd recommend you pick the warm items.