Dinner at Aubergine
I had a wonderful meal at Aubergine this weekend. It was Sunday night and there was a set menu w/ a choice of one of two items for appetizer, entree, dessert and a set cheese course. The food was delicious. I had a very silky, frothy pureed mushroom soup, perfectly sautéed halibut, and really, really good chocolate soufflé.
Although the meal was fabulous, the service was disappointing. I admit that I don't go to "fine" restaurants too often (this was an anniversary meal), so maybe my expectations were too high, but besides the waiter being a bit on the frosty side, our wine arrived after our first course. My soup came without a spoon & by the time I flagged someone down, the soup was tepid. The pacing was rushed, with the hot dessert being served precisely 1.5 seconds after the cheese course was removed. Additionally, we had wanted to order coffee with our dessert but were not given the opportunity as dessert arrived before the waiter stopped by & he did not ask if we would like coffee until we were 3/4 finished with the lovely desert.
Maybe this wouldn't have seemed so bad if it weren't a special night out, but it was a disappointing, although the food was wonderful. I'm curious if anyone has had similar experiences at Aubergine?
Sadly, service suffers at Aubergine on the weekend when they are inevitably booked wall to wall. They are to some extent victims of their own success. So if you can arrange it at all, the ideal reservation is quite early on a week night. Then the level of service matches the extremely high quality of their food and presentation. It is the best tasting menu that we have tried anywhere, better indeed than the quite good tasting menu at Spago. Did you notice for plating they use Bernardaud's Fusion line?
souffles take about 15 to 18 minutes to cook and must be served out of the oven and can't wait. It can be a hard thing to time as people eat at different speeds.
Note: coffee should be served after the dessert as it is strong and over powers the taste however most people like to have it before or during dessert?