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The Sinclair

Kat Sep 12, 2013 09:14 AM

Any recommendations? The mains look a bit ho hum but the small plates look really interesting.

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    LeoLioness RE: Kat Sep 12, 2013 10:38 AM

    I had a disaster of a meal there a few weeks ago. Everything we had (mac and cheese, disco fries, kale salad, mushroom croquettes) was underseasoned, the burger seemed like a frozen patty and had an unappealing curry barbeque sauce on it, and the "fried chicken" was chicken breast cooked sous-vide, then flash fried (not bad, but bland and not what we were envisioning). Everything begged for more salt--so did we, and a shaker finally arrived when the entrees did.

    Service was not attentive and frankly, kind of weird. Our server had some strange aversion to clearing away the empty plates off the table. Oh, and the bartender shouldn't complain about "what a pain" it is to make a cocktail (that's on the menu) to customers, who happen to be sitting right next to the person who ordered said cocktail (hi, that would be me).

    As a show venue I like it a lot, but I won't be back for a meal.

    2 Replies
    1. re: LeoLioness
      hotoynoodle RE: LeoLioness Sep 12, 2013 11:30 AM

      oof. sounds like a bad start to the evening. we have tix coming up to southern culture on the skids so will make other plans for dinner!

      is this another schlow "consulting" gig gone awry?

      1. re: LeoLioness
        nyc_to_ma RE: LeoLioness Sep 12, 2013 12:42 PM

        I also had a mediocre meal there about a month ago. I honestly don't even remember what I ate anymore, it was that boring.

      2. Kat RE: Kat Sep 13, 2013 07:01 AM

        Appreciate the feedback. We went last evening before dinner as we had tickets for a show. We must have hit it on a good night. The place was full and we sat outside on the deck (warm, humid night there was a nice breeze and this was before the rain). We started with a variety of small plates: asparagus with poached egg in a jar, deviled eggs with bacon, bone marrow tots, mussels, kale salad with faro and then shared a main, the spicy duck with marrow cornbread. Bone marrow tots had a surprising spicy kick as they melted in your mouth. I love anything with a poached egg on top and the asparagus was no exception. Duck was not really spicy but was cooked perfectly and wasn't fatty, which is what I usually dislike about duck. Deviled eggs were simple, but so retro, when was the last time you saw them on a menu? Made me happy just eating them. Did not try the mussels, but they were served with two slices of thick toast which spouse used to enjoy every drop of the broth in which they were served. Server was prompt and attentive; I have a shellfish allergy and he made a special trip to the kitchen to inquire about an ingredient. Not really fine dining, but price was equal to the quality. We both really enjoyed our meal and would dine here again before a show.

        8 Replies
        1. re: Kat
          hotoynoodle RE: Kat Sep 15, 2013 12:57 PM

          the biltmore has deviled eggs. :)

          1. re: hotoynoodle
            chefematician RE: hotoynoodle Sep 15, 2013 02:17 PM

            So does Deep Ellum...

            1. re: chefematician
              phatchris RE: chefematician Apr 7, 2014 02:37 AM

              Oleana as well...

              1. re: phatchris
                black_lab RE: phatchris Apr 8, 2014 06:54 AM

                and Highland Kitchen, JM Curley, Bon Me

              2. re: chefematician
                addiez RE: chefematician Apr 8, 2014 09:48 AM

                And All Star Sandwich Bar!

                1. re: chefematician
                  misseri RE: chefematician Apr 8, 2014 12:14 PM

                  And the Independent

                2. re: hotoynoodle
                  MC Slim JB RE: hotoynoodle Apr 8, 2014 12:39 PM

                  And Merrill & Co., and Local 149, and The Hawthorne, and Coda, and The Citizen, and Russell House Tavern, and about 50 other places.

                  Used to be a novelty (I remember how tickled I was at Oleana's outstanding version about 15 years ago, when a meze menu section was something new); now you can't escape them.


                3. re: Kat
                  Small Plates RE: Kat Sep 17, 2013 09:07 AM

                  I have only been to the Sinclair once before a show - and I have to report that we, too, must have been on an off night if the place is indeed the disaster others report. I had the steak tartare and a beet salad that was fab. My husband had the burger that was perfectly serviceable. The service was a bit off, but not that I would complain about it or even really remember it - and the server himself was super nice in spite of the timing issues. The joint was crazed and there was a big show - so the atmosphere was wild. (Enjoyably wild for us - not sure how the staff liked it.) Overall, I thought it was great to have the convenience of dinner before the show - and we all loved our food. So... count me among the dissenting. I'd go back again before a show.

                4. Kat RE: Kat Sep 16, 2013 06:57 AM

                  Thanks for the correction. I should have said that in my experience, I'd not seen them in a menu recently. Guess I need to expand my hipster dining horizons, LOL.

                  1. gini RE: Kat Apr 6, 2014 01:42 PM

                    Resurrecting this thread. I was pleasantly surprised by a couple of snacks here recently:
                    fried pickles - the pickles are shaved, breaded and fried; unfortunately this lends to the pickle mostly falling out of the breading. Also, greasy. At least the dipping sauce was great.
                    disco tots - um, heck yeah. Awesome bar food. Potentially even better than all those tot dishes at Lower Depths. I am a sucker for tots.
                    buffalo cauliflower - I appreciated that the cauliflower was roasted, not fried. Well balanced; an enjoyable veggie dish.
                    Pimento cheese olives - the crumbled bacon added nothing - a DC commented that these would have been better fried.
                    BBQ brisket sliders - slightly dry, but the meat itself was tender and flavorful.

                    Drinks are well crafted. Services is forgetful at best, downright unavailable at worst.

                    I love the fact that you can really get dinner & a show here. And that the food is better than edible. We'll be back.

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: gini
                      Jenny Ondioline RE: gini Apr 6, 2014 08:10 PM

                      Oh, can you actually sit at a table and see the band? This changes everything, because going to a friend's birthday bash at TTs last week reminded me that I am 100% done with standing at gigs.

                      1. re: Jenny Ondioline
                        Kat RE: Jenny Ondioline Apr 7, 2014 08:09 AM

                        No, the restaurant is separate from the concert space in the same building. At the concert I went to there, it was standing only and it is a small space.

                        1. re: Jenny Ondioline
                          gini RE: Jenny Ondioline Apr 7, 2014 08:15 AM

                          Sorry for the confusion - I meant that you can have dinner and then go see the show in the same building.

                          1. re: gini
                            huuvola RE: gini Apr 7, 2014 09:13 AM

                            Also, to clarify: In the music venue, there are some sections in the upstairs area where you can sit down. (No food served there; just seating.)

                        2. re: gini
                          MC Slim JB RE: gini Apr 8, 2014 09:52 AM

                          This may have something to do with the fact that Schlow is no longer involved with the project, which given his recent track record is hard to view as a bad thing. The new guy spent time at Strip-T's and UpStairs: http://boston.eater.com/archives/2014... His menu seems to have a Southern bent to it.


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