Had my second meal at Bijoux in Dallas and was extremely impressed. Food was stellar and the wine list has been substantially upgraded since my last visit.
Every single dish that we had was absolutely top notch. For appetizers, my girlfriend had a hand made pasta with a braised leg of rabbit and wild mushrooms. Really quite good. I had a pork belly with candied carrots and Thia red curry. Absolutely stunning dish. As good as anything I've ever put in my mouth. Just to die for. Nothing I could say would do justice to this dish. It absolutely must be experienced to understand it. The pork belly had been braised, I think, but then it had been roasted or fried on a high heat such that the outside was crispy and light. Very lightly sauced, but just the right counterpoint. My girlfriend's daughter, somewhat unadverterously had a green salad, but it was very nicely done. Lovely dressing of oil and vinegar.
For main courses, I had duck. A pan roasted breast with a "sheppard's pie" of duck confit topped with mashed potatoes on top. Mild chou crout accompanied the magret. My girlfriend had pork two ways -- a pan roasted loin and a braised shank. Nicely done in a cider sauce. The GF's daughter had the star main course -- a simple truffle risotto. Simple rich risotto with shaved black truffle on top. Simple, but wonderful.
Wine list has expanded. Nice, but not great selection. We had a Gislaine Barthod 2002 Chambolle Musigny village. Very nice. Lots of good wines, but very few very, very good wines, especially at mid price points. But certainly nothing to complain about. Now the wine list is much more in line with the quality of the food.
Among the top three or four restaurants in Dallas, I'd wager. And doing well, too. On a Thursday night, we couldn't get in on short notice until 9:45 p.m. But we like to eat late in any event, and it certainly was well worth it.
The list is online:
This particular wine was $105. My impression of the pricing of the list in general is that it is priced at the high end of the reasonable range. But given the quality of the food, that's not unexpected. I haven't bough any of Ghislaine Barthod's wines at retail in a while, but I'd guess that this is a $55 to 60 bottle of wine, although her 2002's were very highly rated and might be a bit hard to find now. So it could be a tad more.
We had the tasting last night and it was to be nice not good.
I've had much better at Lola and Nana. Still mad about the whole meal after such high expectations. I'll post more details later.
Just talking about the food. Note I'm pretty picky.
Coddled egg with vodka cream caviar - I've had something similar at aurora - It was OK. The runny yolk kinda bothered me. 2 of us did not finish it.
Salad of Celery Root with asparagus and truffle vinaigrette - I took a few bites and didn't eat the rest. Was not tasty at all.
Pan seared scallop with creamy polenta and tellicherry sauce - Everybody at the table liked it, but the sauce was too spicy after being proclaimed the best sauce in the world by the waiter.
Eastern spotted skatewing with choucroute and golden raisins - It was OK, kinda fishy - I ate about 1/2.
House made fettucini with braised leg of rabbit and wild mushrooms - It was good compared to the previous dishes, but was kinda bland.
Hudson valley foie gras - good dish if you like foie gras.
Pan seared filet with kobe beef short rib - the short rib was delicious, the filet overcooked.
Goat cheese with quail egg holey toast, bacon leek vinaigrette - Good cheese course.
Desseert service - Each of us got a different dessert, not sure of that was normal. But none of them stood out.
So based on my experience I would not recommend the tasting. I think it was overpriced for the quality of the food served.
Not sure if I would ever go back, but if I do it would be for the 3 or 5 course meal.