Anyone tried the "new" 750 ml in South Pas?
- tokyoastrogirl Aug 14, 2008 02:29 PM
I couldn't bear to give it a second chance after our diasterous first visit soon after it opened, but I sooo want to like the place and I hear they have a new chef, lower prices and a new, more wine-friendly menu. Is this true? Any accounts of the new and improved 750 ml?
I was just there last night! Very quickly: It was really, really good. Bottle of nice rose for $29, the housemade charcuterie is excellent (duck pate with truffles was divine; boar salami, chorizo, lardo); we had the marrow which melted into a pool of delicious fat to dip our bread in (it was hot last night, we sat outside), a salad (small, but tasty), the sweet corn agnolotti with mushrooms and parmesan is downright delicious, and the fish special was copia with clams, lima beans and maybe an olive vinaigrette; dessert was this lovely little chocolate souffle with a choc-butterscotch terrine on the side. But oh my goodness do NOT, I repeat, not miss the pork belly confit with apricots and bok choy. So simple, so perfect. Worlds away better than it was even in December.
OK- I didn't see any of these in time and we decided to go anyway. I gotta say......it still stinks. To be fair, I didn't order any of the things you listed above, but at this point I don't know if I can go again. First of all, when we asked what the cheeses were (menu only says cheese selection) the waitress rattled off about five French-sounding cheeses, giving zero description and assuming everyone would know what those are. I'm not Julia Child but I think I'm pretty well versed in the world of cheeses, at least more than the average Jacques, but I hadn't heard of a single one. When my sister and I stared back at her, waiting for more info, she just looked at us blankly as if to say "so, which one do you want?" We asked her for descriptions and she couldn't really give us any. It just came across as being so pretentious.
We opted out of the cheeses and ordered, to share, one smoked squab salad, the smoked trout with beets and the chicken liver mousse w/ port and grilled bread. I'd say about 2 ounces of squab came on a mini pile of undressed frisee and was pretty undercooked. I like meat rare but the undoness made it chewy, although the flavor was good. The smoked trout looked and had the texture of mealy canned tuna and after one bite, I couldn't take another- it was so off putting. The chicken liver mousse was just alright- too sweet and had an odd, blue-cheesy flavor to it so we left that too. I'll just chalk that one up to a difference in preference- I like my chicken liver mousse to be more savory.
I saw that most patrons had ordered entrees (where we chose to share a few appetizers) and they did look good, but after two visits and almost inedible meals, I'll just have to cross 750 ml off my list.
I WANT to like it but I guess I just have to say, I'm just not that into you, 750 ml.
I posted about my good experience there in the older link above. Just want to be clear: you only ordered three small plates/appetizers? Did you order wine? Did you like that? Squab is almost always served rare. In fact, I wouldn't want to imagine being served a well-cooked piece of it. And since my favorite dish was the chicken liver mousse, I wanted to respond that to/for me its flavor was strong, but that was the essence of chicken livers, and it wasn't sweet unless you were bringing together the mousse and the port reduction, which is a jelly on top of the mousse, not mixed into it, so you can have it as your taste likes it.
I was there with my sister (tokyoastrogirl) and I have had squab many times (especially at Opus back when Centeno was still there), and this was close to being raw, not rare. Very chewy and cold.
I, too, thought the chicken liver mousse was a disappointment, and I usually love liver/pates of all kinds. It was too bitter inside and the port was too sweet; it was like trying to gain balance with two extreme flavors and it didn't work. The smoked trout was the worst...ugh. One bite and we were done with it.
Yes, we had wine, and it was excellent. But good wine is not hard to find in SoCal....not enough of a reason to go back there.
The things I ordered (or tasted from a friend's meal) that I thought were excellent: the pork belly, the croque madame (excellent), the steak frites, the goat cheese salad, the cheese platter and the chocolate/butterscotch dessert. The roast chicken for two was just OK--nothing special and husband didn't really like the mussels. Otherwise we thought everything was really good---and we loved the atmosphere.
we went last night, after finding out from eater la that kris morningstar is the temporary chef there, between Blue Velvet and opening Casa downtown. It was delicious. Really, really delicious. The sweet corn agnolotti was gob stopping, and the sausage of the day was heavenly. The thing with Morningstar is, though, one often leaves the table still hungry.
However, we had very good, very personal service and I will be doing a full review on my blog and reposting it here.