Gwynnett St - First Meal
The calendar dragged around a special occasion I took a try on a local place. I don't know how it was communicated but there seems to be an air of stubborn 'our way, take it or leave it' about the place. The menu describes dishes by ingredients only which is about all one can expect today, but I did hope the server would amplify when asked, but no.The wine list seemed to be the poor relation to the cocktail selection. The bread offered was at five dollars, and after seeing the portion size of our app I realized we would need it. We are in winter and root veggies are pretty much all that is offered, parsnips, sun chokes, crones, beets, celery root and the seasonally permitted cabbage and Brussels sprouts. Strict and correct, but for the blood oranges. Like I said - our way.
All of the above is put in perspective by the general excellence of the food with tastes running from subtle to bold and assertive. The app of root veggies, running near to being pickled, was a gentle interplay of light flavors. The cod was rich and full flavored, simply seasoned. The duck was outstanding, cooked with a blend of spices which set up the gamey flavors. A simple sauce and a smear of prune mash rounded out the dish. Near in quality to the duck at at 11 Madison. With the duck was roasted cabbage which was good and sprouts which I putted out. The whiskey bread was really a plus to the meal, moist with a small after hit of alcohol, reminded my of Patricia Murphy's. Finished with the chocolate thing, a painted plate concept piece. with ganache palates and dehydrated mousse, which seemed like chocolate crumbs. Not bad.
All said, an outstanding fine meal in which the negatives were turned around by the food. Worth a trip on the L train.
I was just there last week with my family. I think your appraisal- "our way" hits the nail on the head. Fortunately, our rather chatty waitress was perfectly happy to explain all the dishes in detail. The appetizers were tasty, but small portions...we shared 3 between the 5 of us. We had the puntarelle, snails, and sunchokes. the snails were actually the largest portion, thanks to the farro. My wife enjoyed the smoked beans, my kids had the duck, and I had the "ocean trout"...after acertaining that it was steelhead and not "seatrout" (weakfish). I'm very particular about the true identity of my fish. They made it clear that the duck would be medium rare. My kids asked if their duck could approach medium (It did, barely) but I forgot to ask about the fish. Now, I love raw fish. I love cooked fish. Not so big on half raw fish. It was a bit too rare for my taste, but OK. To me, medium rare fish simply has less flavor than more well cooked fish. The accompaniments were good, but I realize that the nori and caviar (stuff I really, really love) did not hit off well with this dish, for me. No criticism of the restaurant...the dish was great, it was just my own taste. Next time I'll get the duck. We skipped desserts- to be quite honest, none sounded appetizing to us. Again, our taste. I definitely plan to go back some time, but next time I'll know more about what to order.