Baume & Brix Opening Tomorrow!
Baume & Brix is officially opening tomorrow (October 10, 2012) and reservations can be made via Open Table. I have been following the build up to the opening on their Facebook page and it really looks like it will be a fun venue. It is spearheaded by three extremely talented former chefs from Moto and iNG (Thomas Elliott Bowman, Nate Park and Ben Roche). The menu is said to be affordable fine dining and to consist of globally inspired dishes that utilize modern techniques and some creative, whimsical presentations and features. There is also going to be a six person chef's table inside an old elevator shaft. I have reservations to check it out first hand tomorrow!
Here is my review:
My wife and I had the pleasure of dining at Baume & Brix tonight for the official soft opening. Baume and Brix is spearheaded by three extremely talented former chefs from Moto and iNG (Thomas Elliott Bowman, Nate Park and Ben Roche). The name of the restaurant stems from two culinary terms, baume (a scale for gauging the gravity of liquid) and brix (a scale for measuring sugar). The menu is divvied up into four categories: Explore (akin to appetizers), Summit (entrees), Divide (large dishes to be shared among small groups - these must be ordered in advance) and Conquer (desserts). The food is globally influenced and has modern techniques with creative, whimsical presentations yet is approachable and affordable (expect to pay about $90 per/person for three courses and a two drinks including tax and tip). Despite serving up high quality cuisine using fresh, high end ingredients there is a relaxed and fun atmosphere.
Baume and Brix did a great job renovating the space; the decor is really modern and trendy and very aesthetically pleasing. The space is rather large (the dining room and adjacent bar seat approximately 200); while most of the tables for two are fairly close together, the dining room was not too noisy even though it was more than two thirds full. Parties of four are seated at larger tables and parties of six in comfortable looking booths,. A really cool and unique aspect of Baume and Brix is a six-seat chef's table inside an old elevator shaft that will be rolling out next month and will consist of a tasting menu customized (both in terms of number of courses and type of cuisine) to the preferences of the party booking the space. Baume and Brix also has a bar adjacent to the dining area (featuring both classic cocktails and modern versions of the classics with tweaked recipes). There is also a large cocktail lounge underneath the restaurant called The Grid.
While the menu is not quite complete, the working draft is excellent. Currently there are about six appetizers, six entrees and four desserts to choose from (they will be adding a few more shortly). Most of the appetizers contain organ meats or nose-to-tail cuisine (so require an adventurous palate) but a couple (while still fun and unique ingredient combinations) are suitable for those with more vanilla palates. My wife and I shared the "naked lobster" (raw unshelled lobster with vanilla-potato foam) and Wagyu beef carpaccio; both of these had attractive presentations and tasted awesome. The entrees are "safer" (in terms of less organ meats and random body parts) and most sounded great; my wife went with the short ribs (which she devoured and loved every bite) and I took our server's advice and opted for the black cod - our server did not steer me wrong here, the sauce (infused with scallops) was divine and this was seriously one of the best fish dishes I have ever consumed. About my only criticism is that while the portion size of the appetizer was adequate, the entrees were a tad small; either slightly larger portions or bread service would make the meal more satisfying.
For desserts my wife ordered a deconstructed grilled cheese (tasted like a sweetened grilled cheese) and I went with the Frosty and fries (potato ice cream, chocolate mousse that tasted like a Wendy's Frosty, shaved French fry like substance on top and a cherry dipping sauce). The desserts were not quite as delicious as the savory courses, but still tasty.
Service overall was quite good, especially for a soft opening (there are still some kinks to work out - i.e. for two of our three courses both the person who delivered the dish and our primary server separately presented the dish). More importantly though, everybody we encountered seemed enthusiastic about the venue and was very friendly and attentive. Water glasses were kept full, the table cleaned between courses, napkins folded during bathroom breaks - yet the waitstaff was still down to Earth rather than stiff or overly formal. What really impressed me was my wife did not notice on two occasions that she had knocked her purse off the back of her chair and staff stealthy picked it up and hung it back up on her chair without her even noticing! Our primary server Kara had come over from Sable and she was extremely warm and pleasant.
While Baume and Brix is still a work in progress, the soft opening was more than impressive and the sky is the limit in terms of potential. This is a really fun venue where you can have an elevated, fun, upscale dining experience in a comfortable, laid back but elegant space. There is so much talent here and I really look forward to watching Baume and Brix evolve. I am excited to try out the chef's table experience in the near future and definitely see this venue ascending to not just one of my personal favorites, but rapidly becoming an extremely popular restaurant.
Congratulations to a successful opening and I look forward to enjoying many future meals at Baume and Brix!
Thanks for posting your report - very helpful!
I have a quick question:
>> Divide (large dishes to be shared among small groups - these must be ordered in advance)
When you say "in advance", do you mean that they must be ordered at the start of the meal, or that they must be ordered several days beforehand?
Thanks for the compliment.
I believe the Divide dishes have to be ordered at least a day (perhaps multiple days) beforehand. They encourage you to place your entire order (including desserts) all at once even for parties of two. It sounded like the Divide portion of the menu is still being developed and perhaps is not quite yet ready.