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May 19, 2012 10:41 AM

Verjus Review

I so wanted to like this place and I did but...

The food was very tasty but it was NOT a good value. At 55E for 4 courses (and 70E for 6) plus an extra 14E for a none too generous cheese course, I wanted more food, and few more bells and whistles for sure. The wine pairings (at 30E) were well chosen and right size pours, but the serving sizes of the food courses were pretty small. I think many would leave the table still hungry, especially choosing the 4 course without cheese as we did.

Amuse was a roasted new potato with poppyseeds, burnt bread, and creme fresh. A very tasty bite.
First course: Burrata mozzarella in green gazpacho with white bean hummus, garlic crouton and a drizzle of hot chili-sesame oil. This was amazingly good, complex and definitely awakened the palate in a very exciting way.

Second course: Hake with braised fennel, roasted artichoke,and beetroot, with one clam, saffron sauce and pine nuts. Again quite tasty, interesting flavors and textures, pretty small portion.
Third course: Milk fed veal from the Pyrenees with grilled asparagus, heirloom radishes (sliced paper thin!) and a tomato based paste like sauce (sorry forgot the details here.) This was a very simple dish, everything cooked to perfection and high quality, but other than the radishes, which were truly special (and I wanted twice as many) the dish lacked any kind of pizazz and the portion was truly meager.

We skipped the cheese and had a choice of 2 desserts. We skipped the lemon yoghurt cake with candied olives (I really don't get the new craze of olives as part of dessert) and had a quite delicious deconstructed peanut butter and jelly sandwich: house made graham cracker, peanut butter mousse, chocolate ganache, steamed grapes. Very rich and delicious.

We skipped coffee and they bought 2 tiny almond cookies with the bill. Again, delicious but at this price point I expected a bit more for mignardises.

This is a restaurant by Americans and for Americans. Everyone in the place (including the wine bar which I checked out while visiting the bathroom) was speaking English and the staff all speak English with no French accent. They are very friendly and the place is tiny, casual, and aiming to please. If the menu were 35-40E I would say make a reservation immediately. But at 55E, not so much.

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  1. Very edifying, well-balanced report. Thank you so much.

    1. Thanks for the report. Edifying, as Parigi noted. That first course sounds right up my alley, though. Green gazpacho...mmm.

      1. There view doesn't surprise me, we ate in the wine bar and were underwhelmed. Similar observation to Plafield, small plates with small portions. Give the number of hounds who spoke highly of Hidden Kitchen I find it interesting there are so few reports of Verjus...?

        1. We went there for New Year's Eve and had a great time--mostly because of our table mates. There was a prix fixe menu, of course, which was fine but the wine pours were skimpy. The dishes were good, but not great--more wine would probably have ameliorated our viewpoint.