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Prix fixe dining in Austin

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I am hoping that many of you read the article in the Austin360 about the PF dining scene in Austin. We recently tried Trio and were very favorably impressed. Although I would not have given it 5 stars, whatever that means, I certainly would have given it 4 stars. The food was good and their service was wonderful, as usual. Our water remembered us from having eaten there over 6 months ago. And, unlike Mr. Sutter's experience, we were allowed to order the appetizer and wine specials at our tables, not at the bar only.

Also, I was glad to see Chez Nous among those reviewed. It is sort of an insitution her now and I have eaten there many times and always felt that I got a good deal.

I would be interested, especially, in hearing of anyone's experience with the PF menu at Jasper's. Mr. Sutter gave them, and only them, 5 stars. I have eaten there about 3 times and each time was a little poorer than the last.

Thank you for your support. J

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  1. I had the prix fixe menu this weekend at Chez Nous. I had been dying to try CN for a while.
    I'd say everything was pretty much as advertised, though with some minor quibbles-the entree's were extremely well executed, though the appetizers left a little to be desired. The duck pate wasn't as rich as I expected for one. Probably my big complaint was the dessert-they were average at best, and if the attraction of the prix fixe is the value, I'd say the desserts didn't hold their end of the bargain (a dull mousse and pedestrian custard).

    On the plus side, I wish every restaurant in town would go take lessons in service from them On a weekend night with a wait, we were never waiting for bread, or water, and the kitchen was pretty efficient as well-which pretty much guarantees that I will be back. There's a meuniere on the menu that I really want to try, probably not a NOLA meuniere, but still!

    8 Replies
    1. re: NWLarry

      Chez Nous is a pretty solid value in a great setting. I've always been pretty partial to the salmon pate for starters.

      I agree that the desserts are a bit weak so sometimes I just go with cheese plate.

      1. re: lixlix

        We went to CN ourselves a few days ago. This place has had consistently good solid food for 20 years. I got the country pate and while tasty, I should have gone with the salmon. My only complaint was that for dessert I took the brie. Not so good a choice. It was cold, not aged enough and simply not a good piece of brie.

        As usual service was excellent and the place was full that week night.

        The waitress told us about a place on E. 5th that has been opened by a former CN employee or owner, don't remember which. I haven't seen any reference to it on this NG but there are a couply of reviews on Yelp. Of course, who knows who put those reviews up there. Anyone here tried Justine?

        1. re: singlemalt

          I believe you are referring to The Good Knight. I think its on 6th or 7th. I haven't made it out there yet though.

          1. re: singlemalt

            Ok I thought you meant The Good Knight who I thought had a chef that used to work at Chez Nous but you mean Brasserie Justine's which I just managed to try tonight.

            I thought it was good french brasserie food in a warm setting.

            I opened with a glass of Kir Royale and had white asparagus appetizer. 5 spears were cooked to al dente with a more tender interior than green asparagus. The sabayon sauce on top was really good, tasting of butter. pretty good at $6.50.

            I followed with steak tartare. A good mound of hand chopped steak mixed with dijon onions, maybe some capers/chopped cornichons, topped with a quail egg and served with fries. very tender steak and flavorful, fries were not bad but could stand to be a bit skinnier in my opinion. a decent selection at $14.

            finished off with a cheese plate and a glass of port. The cheese plate here is meant more as an appetizer rather than a dessert course and the selection is not terribly impressive though served at the right temperature. Wish it had some accompaniments such as fruit or nuts or honey.

            1. re: lixlix

              Wow, and thanks for the good review. Helps retore my faith in the Austin Chowhound board. I will try it soon. I have not heard of The Good Knight however but will look into it. J.

            2. re: singlemalt

              Gave Justine's a go tonight. The space is nice, if anachronism to its surrounding industrial park locus.

              Thinking I'd compare it plate-for-plate to Chez Nous, the meal opened promisingly enough. The escargot app was succulent, more tender than CN, though the butter sauce was lesser in flavor.

              The SO and I split the steak frites and the confit de canard. The steak was fine, not as good as CN, but passable. The fries were, in my opinion, antithetical to the European style; shoestring cut and limp. I love bacon, and so it follows that I should love flying bacon (duck) without reserve, but I have not tasted a dish so oversalted in all my years of restaurant dining (for context, despite the claims of saltiness in Enoteca's prosciutto pizze, I find it utterly amazing), and the excess no doubt encouraged an excessive dryness in the meat, as well.

              I'll say that, despite the attempt at a soft opening by the owners, Justine was slammed early and often tonight; the restaurant was filled by the time we arrive around 6:30. But after a mistake delayed our dinner by an hour, we expected a far superior meal to what we received. And after a slight conciliation by management for the inconvenience, we were further neglected when we asked for the bill; it arrived more than 15 minutes after our request.

              I'll probably give the place another chance after a reasonable settling time, but for now, be aware that they are working out some serious kinks.

              1. re: poryorick

                Good info....are you saying that the confit was oversalted? That's one of my favirite dishes. Why would bacon be involved?

                1. re: rudeboy

                  A friend once referred to duck as flying bacon, and I've thought of it that way since. No bacon in the dish, I just have an equal love of duck and that particular cut of swine. The duck was inedible due to salt (and subsequent dryness); I can't remember any time up until now that I've been unable to finish this particular dish.