Ate there last night. It was very good, especially given its newness. Most surprising was the fact thats its quite casual. One couple had on shorts and golf shirts. The waiters wear yellow shirts untucked. No more jackets. Patron dress is as casual as you reasonably want. I went in jeans and was appropriately dressed. The atmosphere mirrored the dress--casual, friendly, but professional. Its a far cry from the way the mansion used to be and in my opinion far better.
I had a buffalo steak. It was great. Girlfriend had fish and although it was too salty for her taste it was good. Ceviche appitizer was great, as was bread.
Desserts were smallish but superb-- banana creme pie ala mode and a berry cobbler. Total check was 150 including tax and tip. We will be back.
Two more meals at Fearing's since my last post. Both meals were very good. One was on a Sunday evening and the other the next night, on Monday. Service was much less rushed and better than my previous weekend night dinner. Tuna tartar with coconut, mango, and ponzu sauce was spectacularly good. One of the best things I've ever put in my mouth. Had it both nights. Black cod on night one was very good, albeit IMHO a tad over cooked. Buffalo tenderloin the next night. I ordered it based on waiter's recommendation, and while it was very good, I rather wondered afterward if the lamb chops might be more to my taste. But the beef was exquisitely tender.
My 17 year-old daughter had the vegetarian sampler plate. Mostly side dishes from the main menu. She initially ordered a squash bisque, but the wait staff came back and told her that the kitchen had informed them that they were in error when they had described it to her earlier as vegetarian -- it instead had a bit of turkey stock. Nice touch, I thought.
Ordered wine by the glass one night, which were fine, if not spectacular. E. Sauzet 2005 Puligny-Montrachet the next night was nothing short of spectacular for a village wine. Killer wine if you can find it.
We had dinner at Fearing for the first time on Saturday (9/29). The evening got off to a rough start. We arrived about 25 minutes early, intentionally so, to have a drink in the bar and peruse the wine list at leisure. It took ten to fifteen minutes in the bar to flag down a waitress to take our drink order, and another ten minutes to get the two glasses of wine delivered to our table. When we first checked in with the restaurant host up arriving, we asked for a wine list. They indicated they would get us one. Two separate requests over the twenty-five minutes we sat in the bar, and still no wine list. Once we got to the table, we asked for a wine list immediately. Ten minutes past, with menus, and no wine list. A second request of the waiter, and the wine list finally materialized.
But after this rough start, things got much better and stayed that way all night. While perusing the wine list, Paul Botamer, the wine director, stopped by the table to ask if we needed any help. Over the course of a short coversation, we visited about the 2005 Burgundy vintage for white Burgs, Etienne Sauzet's 2005 whites, an nice Corbiers that he had on the list, and a number of other pleasant topics. Mr. Botamer was pleasant, not at all pretentious, and most helpful. He indicated that although the wine list was not online, that he would be glad to e-mail it to any patron who so requested. As for the list itself, it was well selected, moderately broad, not outrageously overprice (apart from a few choice selections), and quite interesting. In the main, domestic selections are deeper than those from overseas, although the overseas wines are of good quality. Bordeaux, as is often the case, is dearly priced, and the red Burgundy selection was somewhat disappointing, I thought. White Burgs, on the other hand, were quite nice. But there are nice wines in all price ranges, and Paul certainly knows his list and can point out some very nice wines in all price ranges. This is one restaurant where it pays to visit with you sommelier if you have questions.
We opted to go with a white wine menu, as I was interested in trying a Sauzet 2005 white. While we were considering what to order, the Chef stopped by our table to greet us. We were trying to decide what to pair with the halibut for a white Burg, and Chef Fearing nudged us toward the the chicken, with the salmon as a backup. I ordered the "Barbecued Shrimp Taco with Mango-Pickled Red Onion Salad and Smoky Citrus Vinaigrette," while my girlfriend ordered the "Flash-Seared Five-Spice Hamachi with Avocado Wasabi Cream, Spicy Ponzu and Jade Basil Salad" for appetizers. Both were quite good, and matched well with the E. Sauzet 2005 Burgougne blanc, although we both thought that the shrimp taco was the better of the two. (Incidentally, the wine was served a bit too cool for my tastes, but the staff quickly took it off ice, and placed it on the table as requested. But I prefer it too cool, to too warm, as it is easier to warm, than to cool.) For the main course, I had the "Pan-Browned Halibut with Celeriac-Yukon Potato Purée, Fricassee of Wild Mushrooms and Tangled Greens," and Linda had the "Garlic-Basted Chicken Breast with Green Cabbage Sausage Sauté Ginger-Apple Compote and Rosemary Jus." As it turned out, Chef's advice as spot on. Both dishes matched superbly with the wine. (The list also had the Sauzet 2005 Chassagne Montrachet village. The Burgouge blanc was quite nice. A bit light in the mid palate, but a bargain at $56. No doubt the CM village would have been better, but such are the dilemma's life presents. Given the young age, we decided to go with the regional wine and were satisfied.) I thought that the halibut was a bit better, with the potato-celery root puree as the star of the show. Likewise, the chicken was wonderful, and the cabbage and sausage was good, but the best bite on that plate was the apple sauce with a hint of ginger. But excellent entrees all round.
We opted for the five cheese plate for desert. It turned out to be a great choice. Five cheeses sounded like a lot, but this cheese place gave just a taste of each, but with lovely accompaniments of tasted bread, honeycomb, grapes, grilled fig, and candied walnuts. The cheeses were uniformly good and interested. All American, including a blue cheese from Lubbock, they provided just the right touch to end the meal.
The first thirty minutes in the bar, and in attempting to get the wine list in the restaurant were trying. But after that, the meal and service were flawless. While it is admittedly premature to judge on the basis of one meal, if tonights dinner is indicative, Fearings is a serious contender for one of the best four or five restaurants in Dallas, along with Lola, York Street, and Bijoux. As we savored the last bite of cheese and the last swallows of wine, we talked about how each of the four were unique in their own way. But Fearings is a potential worthy addition to the other three. Because of the great values on the wine list, and the laid back atmosphere, Lola is still my personal favorite amongst the four, but anyone could prefer any of them and make a case as to why each is the best in town.
I took a group to dinner there last week and it was amazing! The prices were reasonable and the service was impeccable. Dean stopped by our table to say hello. The whole experience was great.
I agree with the OP on the Banana Cream Pie. The surf and turf with the chicken fried lobster was magnificent.
We went to Fearings for dinner last night and really enjoyed it. Its definitely a who's who's of Dallas crowd and the place to be seen. We were seated outside which was unexpected but turned out to be lovely. The corn bread muffins in the bread basket were delicious as was the other bread. Throughout the evening we were told about several local ingredients used in the dishes which was interesting. For a starter I had a seared fish (can't recall the name) with wasabi cream. I'm not a big sushi fan and didn't realize it would essentially be raw. The dish had wonderful flavor but wasn't my favorite. Husband had the toritilla soup. He never had the original at the mansion so he couldn't compare. The amuse bouche was a pepper jack cheese and tomato shooter. For the main dish I had the filet and chicken fried lobster. The filet had some sort of seasoning on it and was cooked perfectly. The lobster was a little tough but still tasty. The mashed potatoes were probably the best I have ever had. Husband had the ribeye which he really enjoyed.We had a pre-dessert sample of a lemon blackberry parfait that was really delicious and a nice touch. For dessert I had the chocolate cake with white chocolate and stoli raspberries. No words to describe how tasty!Husband had banana cream tart. He thought it was good but would have liked less meringue and more bananas. I thought it was delicious as it was. Overall, definitely a very enjoyable dinner. Our bill was 250.00 before tax and tip. We had a half bottle of wine. Dean Fearing was also there last evening and personally visited each table which was fun. We would definitely go back.