Muffuletta - Sunday Prix Fixe and et al... [MSP]
Headed to Muffuletta tonight, armed with my wife's gift certificate.
Forgot about the Mother's Day factor, which hopefully explains the presence of myriad screamy babies (that and the fact that it was 8 o'clock). I went with the titular prix fixe option: soup w. shredded carrots, Alaskan halibut with mussel (singular) and bananas foster. Wife had the beet salad and the ravioli (not prix fixe). We started with the cheese plate.
Free bread was a bit overwrought. Baguette and crackers with an overwhelming garlic butter. Cute basket, though. The cheese was nice. I am utterly ignorant w/r/t cheese, but this was described as a combination of cow's milk and goat's milk. It had a pungent note that quickly subsided into a savory finish. I enjoyed it.
The soup was solid, but I've been experiencing some great cream soups lately (Gandhi Mahal and Cafe Bonxai), so this paled by comparison. The main course was a sashimi size portion of the Halibut accompanied by a mussel. Fair enough; it's a tasting menu, after all. The accompanying local greens (including ramps) were nice, but I wanted more continuity between the fish and the broth.
The wife's beet salad was unspectacular. It was topped with creme fraiche, and so devolved into something akin to a fancy potato salad. The ravioli wasn't good at all. Drowning in salty, bitter marinara, and (consequently) overcooked, it turned to mush when I tried to cut into it.
My bananas foster (really more of an ice cream topped with banana custard) was a highlight. I'll have to head to Sebastian Joe's to pick up some more of the ice cream base.
Overall, the tasting menu is hardly a bargain at $19, and there were too many failed executions for us to put too high on our re-visit list.
My girlfriend and I both hold the cheese plate as a favorite - when we go (about 4 times a year) we get the cheese and a beverage or two and skip the entrees
The verbiage toggles between the two terms, but the whole enterprise is sold as a recession-friendly thing. I seldom mention portion sizes (it is not the restaurant's obligation to overfeed me), and if the dish were a knockout, I wouldn't have made mention.
For the record, Maude has a more generous cheese plate offering, and better food overall.