La Castile - The Review (i'm still stuffed...)
So i went to La Castile for dinner on Saturday night.
Good God. i haven't eaten like that in a long time. (And thank goodness it was on someone else's wallet!)
The ambiance is precisely what you'd expect from such a restaurant; you half-expect to see stockbrokers materialize out of the woodwork. Lovely.
i have a few quibbles with the wait staff: i ordered a Bombay and tonic, and got a Tanqueray. not that huge a deal, but with the prices they charge ($35 was the cheapest entree i saw) the service should be several degrees beyond perfect. also, the waiter actually wrote our orders down. i'm accustomed (on the exceedingly rare occasions when i get to dine like that) to having waiters memorize orders. on the other hand, there were 23 of us...
to begin, i had their smoked salmon plate. i regret ordering it.. the salmon was fairly good, but i really should have had the scallops. perfect pearlescent buttery globes of mollusc goodness. i got to try one... melted on my tongue. unbelievable.
salad was a classic caesar. not prepared tableside, unfortunately, but they obviously did it right in the kitchen. the garlic was strong, but not overpowering, and there was the perfect hint of anchovies in the dressing as well. croutons were obviously made on-site, as were the small lumps of bacon (which were rather too large to be denigrated by the term 'bacon bits').
my entree was the Tornados Rossini: filet mignon (two pieces, which were *enormous*, and grilled to perfection! i asked for blue rare, and i swear that the steak emitted an audible 'moo' when i cut into it) topped with foie gras. delicious concept.. but on previous occasions when i've had this dish, it's been served with an extremely respectably-sized piece of foie on top. at LC, the amount of foie is roughly the same as the amount of butter you get on steak au beurre. still, provided a lovely richness. served with some fairly anonymous steamed veggies, and a baked potato (does anyone else find it tacky when baked potatoes at restaurants are served still in their foil?)
to drink with dinner we had a lovely red...uh... curses. i forget the vineyard and the vintage, but it was a cabernet franc, and went down just a tad too easily. *hic*
dessert was a ridiculously sinful cointreau cake. i was somewhat disappointed by the size of the slice when it was first placed in front of me... disappointment that rapidly disappeared when i realized there was absolutely no way on this earth that i could finish the whole thing. so i gave the rest to my CEO's fiancee, a confirmed chocoholic. i also had a nice snifter of Remy XO as a digestif.
all in all, and incredible meal. and at an estimated $140 per head, quite the value for the experience.
plus, the steaks my co-workers order were foolishly large.
(ps: interested in chowhound get-togethers? email me at the above address)