Tantalum - Long Beach
here's our update on tantalum this evening:
thai snapper - excellent, tuna tartare & calamari - still excellent, pad thai - too much lemon
a problem - spoke to the manager prior to being seated about wanting to open our own bottles of wine (they have a wine list with no vintages), told him we were planning on ordering a good bottle of sparkling to celebrate a nuptial, asked if he would do a bottle for bottle trade for the corkage as many fine dining establishments do. he agreed to two bottles opened for one time corkage of $15.00 with an ordered bottle. we agreed. ordered a perrier jouet floral rose non-vintage for $126. received the bill with $40 corkage for two bottles. when questioned the manager told us he thought the agreement was we would open two bottles and we would order two bottles and he would still charge $15.00 corkage for two bottles, but we forewent the opportunity because we did not order a second bottle. so we could have ordered two $15 bottles and would have been in the clear. although this was not my understanding and know i would not agree to such a thing, we did attempt to order a bottle of alsatian french and alban viogner, both of which they no longer carry, but is on the menu.
we respectfully challenged him, but he was steadfast and rather than making too much of a fuss, we paid the corkage and will let them know how we feel by simply never returning or recommending tantalum. a shame. long beach is, again, short of a solid fine dining experience. very sorry to report; we were big fans.
i'm with afty. i've eaten here several times because we can dock our rented duffy. it's fun to surprise the guests with the tasteful pan asian decor. the entrance from the mall is stunning compared with its placement between acapulco's and loehmann's. good wine list. good cocktails (i ask them to tone the sweet down a bit). bizarre menu - pan-asian plus macaroni and cheese on the menu. food is okay, not stunning. calamari, edamame, spicy tuna tartare tower, shrimp and stone crab cocktail, and salads all good. sate, lettuce wrapped chicken, and salmon okay. solid presentation. accomodating staff. the best bathrooms long beach has to offer. live music on sundays. flat screen in fabulous lounge area. i like the view. a welcome addition to long beach.
I stopped in yesterday, mid-day, after seeing the other responses to this post and finding myself in the area.
It was fairly empty, as expected for the hour; excellent, friendly service at the bar. I tried the highly recommended calamari appetizer---very good. Made with strips of squid "filet" which, according to the bartender, are fed into a special tenderizing machine. They're breaded with what looks like panko and served with cashews and two side sauces. The breading isn't crispy; it's not a take on the Italian style. I liked it a lot.
I also had the "Kobe" burger, with Maytag blue cheese. Cooked med. rare, as ordered. Came with a lightly dressed cole slaw and battered fries. Nothing was wrong with any of these, but I think there are probably better things on the menu.
Pretty good selection of draft beers and list of frou-frou cocktails; some sounded very tasty.
The decor is beautiful, everything is from Indonesia---if you've traveled there you probably have many of the same things in your house (I do, at least).
The view? Well, it's a view of some condos and boat slips, with a lot of kayakers paddling about. Beats looking at a wall, for sure, but I guess I don't find it that special for Long Beach. I always recommend Chelsea at the Queen Mary for the view because you're looking back at the city and it's quite nice at night. But the interior at Tantalum is quite lovely.
I'll be going back.
Had late lunch there with a party of 4 and found the place quite nice. Decor and atmosphere as well as view on the marina outstanding. Food was different and very interesting but not fabulous. The Calamari appetizer is a must! Menu on the pricey side, service very good.
I will go back.