Ad Hoc, Yountville CA report w/ pics
Hubby and I have been wanting to eat here for a while now. So I made reservations on Thurs and left a message. They didn't hear when I wanted it so I had to call them back on Fri. Left another message and Amolly called me back and said she'll put it in the books.
Free small parking lot for their restaurant and plenty of street parking in front.
Once we told the hostess we had reservations she seated up at our 2 person table. Of course there is a huge table that's across from us but they were ok. The restaurant is kinda loud with the music. Hubby recognized a U2 song.
Waiter came by with the pre-fix menu for the day which was: lentil & sweet potato soup; Liberty Farms raised duck leg; Grayson cheese from Virginia w/ orange blossom honey; and chocolate & butterscotch brownie w/ vanilla whipped cream. $45 per person.
Lentil soup was delicious, comes with lots of lentil, Applewood bacon (Keller loves this bacon I read), carrots, soup. I could have just that w/ bread for dinner.
Bread was good-there were 2 types that I don't remember. Some white crusty bread and a Country bread of some type that was darker. Comes with good butter.
The duck leg entree had crispy skin like eating crispy pig skin, and tender duck. red & white cabbage w/ tiny potatoes slices and sliced pears. I thought it was good, not great. Hubby loved the duck. 3 good portions of duck leg-we took 1 slab home since we couldn't finish it. Read in an article that you can ask for seconds on meat entree but we didn't.
Grayson cheese from Virginia w/ orange blossom honey and some roasted pecans. 2 huge slabs of cheese w/ small bottle of honey and some pecans. We enjoyed it, very mild cheese. Enjoyed it w/ the bread.
Chocolate & butterscotch brownies w/ Vanilla whipped cream. Two huge round brownies w/ drizzle of buttserscotch and container of Vanilla whipped cream. We shared one-it was delicious. Served warm, crispy on the outside and warm inside, with the cream it was great. Can't wait to eat the other one tomorrow.
We got 1 Perrier water bottle for $7, but if I was ordering would have just gotten the Yountville Tap Water-the Free stuff.
Hubby also got a glass of Fog Dog Pinot Noir for $10. He liked it w/ the duck.
Subtotal $107 with tax $8.29= $115.29 before tip. They take credit cards.
The have separate men and women bathrooms.
Recommended, but make reservations and come hungry.
6476 Washington St, Yountville CA
Closed Tues & Wed
Dinner 5-9 Mon & Thurs-Sat
Beer & wine
Reservations & credit cards accepted. Free lot.
Check out my pics.
We went to Ad Hoc during Labor Day, and I think we lucked out on the entree.
Salad: Caesar salad w/ romaine hearts, shaved parmesan and shaved pickled onion
Note: I can't believe the freshness of the lettuce - it's shattering crispy
Main: New England Style Lobster Bake
Note: 1/2 lobster per person, tons of clams, mussels, corn nibletts, and sausages in what seems to me a beurre blanc sauce. The lobster was actually a tad undercook but tasted fine. Clams have a little sand in them, but the flavor was superb - tastes of the ocean and actually was a little crunchy. Corn were super sweet.
Cheese: Grilled mini gruyere sandwiches with tomato soup
Note: Those work together beautifully. The soup is a bit too garlicy/olive oil on its own. At this point I was totally stuffed.
Dessert: S'mores with ice cream
Note: This one didn't work. The marshmallow was good, the chocolate ice cream a tad sweet, but those graham cracker crust were like jaw breakers. I wish they use the chocolate cookie in the TKO at Bouchon Bakery and just give us a good ice cream sandwich instead. The macaroons at Bouchon Bakery were better than the Lauduree ones in Paris.
To sum - not perfect, but unbelievable bargain nevertheless.
I just went to Ad Hoc last weekend too. I enjoyed it although not every course was stellar. But overall I found the place to be festive. I like the casual relaxed atmosphere, and the service was great, the portions were generous. Here's what was served up on my night:
1) Roasted Beet and Chickpea Salad. Beautiful looking and refreshing. But how can you go wrong with roasted beets? I love them and they're always a great starter to a meal, IMHO. There were a lot of chickpea though. Dressing was very light.
2) Kurobuta Pork Short Ribs. This came from Snake River Farms. The meat was cooked very moist and was plain but tasty. Seemed like it was mostly salted. The weird part was that the fatty parts of the pork wasn't really rendered off, which made me think they used the plastic bag method of cooking that a lot of fancy places are trying where you cook the meat in the bag. This retains lots of moisture but to me it doesn't make the pork look appetizing. Still, it tasted good and I really loved the yukon gold potatoes underneath. It was roasted just right and I asked for a second serving of just the potatoes! (And they were nice to bring it without extra charge)
3) A Spanish cheese course. The goat cheese tasted great but it wasn't served with any crackers or something to spread the cheese on. It came with roasted almonds and quince paste, so I didn't know how I was supposed to enjoy it. I would have liked maybe a pasta dish at this point.
4) Warm Basque Cake was the final course. It was a bit dry and hard around the edges and served with dried fruit compote. It was OK but not my favorite and not a nice note to end the dinner with, unfortunately.
Also, I agree with the Chronicle reviewer about how Ad Hoc's wine selection is average. The glasses I drank weren't memorable.
Below are some photos. There are more photos at http://singleguychef.blogspot.com/200... as well as the full report.
[[FYI, I tried saving the photos onto this post but didn't work. I'll try again.]]
We confirmed with the service staff that our Tri-Tip was cooked Sous Vide (plastic bag) and finished on the grill. Your porkchop was probably done the same.
IMHO, the best part of our meal was how well-informed & well-trained the staff was, while still being very easygoing & friendly. We actually had a pretty lengthy conversation about the sous vide method, and I'm not sure many non-Keller joints would have a staff that could do the same. This friendly and informative dialog was the reason why it was one of the most enjoyable meals I've had in a long time (despite the Tri-Tip being a bit overdone).
thanks foodiegrl for confirming my suspicion. I guessed as much since it seems like all the fancy restaurants are going with the plastic bag technique. It really does make the meat part moist, but I really do believe a good searing is in order now and then. ;-)
And I agree, our server was very friendly and informed when asked about the dishes. But not every server is that way. And the first server who greeted us at the front wasn't very friendly. He pretty much gave me a once over looking at me up and down like I wasn't dressed right. (I wore a long-sleeve FCUK shirt and G-star jeans, so I don't know what his big deal was.)
I don't know how you managed not eating both brownies. I have no self control in general but I love Ad Hoc's brownies. I was there this past Sunday too and I agree with all of your comments.
The chocolate and butterscotch brownies actually have butterscotch chips in them. The sauce on top of it was caramel sauce. I prefer their regular warm chocolate brownies without the butterscotch chips... it's perfect without the extra sweetness from the chips.
My favorite entree has been the braised short ribs so far. The ribs are the plate cut, so they have no bones and sous vide cooked over 48 hours... amazing!
Here's a picture of the chocolate and butterscotch brownies...