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Mar 26, 2009 09:46 AM

Harbour -- quick review

Went with two friends the other night. The decor was odd, but interesting. Not surprisingly, the place has a nautical theme, so the dining room looks like the inside of a cruise ship, although the bar area felt more like a slightly upscale sports bar. The food was sophisticated albeit a little uneven. The clam chowder appetizer was flavorful, but very salty and I found it overwhelmingly rich and couldn't finish it, although my friends liked their tastes. The ceviche was lovely and the crudo was good as well. We all had fish entrees -- one friend really liked his dish, but we all agreed that the miso glaze on the Arctic Char was way, way too heavy. Once I scraped it off, however, the dish was good. Shared butterscotch pudding for desert was delicious, the cocktails were perfectly mixed and the wine recommendations were good as well. And I should note the servers were very attentive; we got a sort of modified french service where drinks, plates etc. were set down simultaneously, although I'm not sure where this is standard or it just happened because we ate on the early side and there were extra staff people with nothing else to do. It came to around $75 a head -- overall we thought it was enjoyable, if inconsistent. Not sure if we'll go back for dinner, given the options available at that level, but would definitely go for cocktails -- the bartender is talented!

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  1. Do you remember anything about their raw bar? Oyster selection, crab claws, clams and the like? In that neighborhood, they'd be competing with Aquagrill and even, a bit further east, that other "dining on a boat" place, Lure.

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    1. Just got back from a phenomenal dinner at Harbour. Every dish was superb, the amuses, pre-dessert and mignardises were top-notch, service perfect and the staff couldn't have been nicer. We had the scallop ceviche with sea urchin, squid with black bean sauce, tilefish with a curry foam, gulf shrimp with ?, a side of cabbage and bacon, chocolate ganache cake, and espresso souffle. The desserts were outstanding, the best we have had in quite a while. The wine list has some very nice selections in the reasonable range (we had a 2005 Nero d'Avola for $41), and if you are really on a limited budget there are 10 wines by the bottle for $20 or less. The decor is just as sara333 described it, odd but interesting, we found it somewhat noisy but not excessively so. I can't wait to go back and try more dishes. What particularly impressed me was the creativity. Too many seafood restaurants make the argument that they use simple preparations in order to emphasize the freshness of the fish, which to me means you are serving me something I can easily do at home. This is not the case at Harbour. I would not attempt to do what they are doing. The bold flavors and interesting combinations make this what a really great seafood restaurant should be.