Friday, September 04, 2009
B & O Brasserie
I had the opportunity to dine at the new B & O Brasserie downtown recently and let me tell you, it was an experience to remember. While it is in a hotel, the restaurant doesn't have that generic hotel restaurant vibe, it was simply yet stylishly decorated and had great, comfortable seating that felt intimate despite the size of the space.
The best part was the food and drinks. The drink menu was varied and all that we tried was tasty. The chef even went so far as to suggest a drink other than the one I chose because he thought it would taste better with my order!
The bread was made off the premises (something I think they plan to change) and was very tasty. I appreciated the butter with the sprinkle of basil salt, it was a nice touch that set it apart from other bread & butter samplers I've had.
For an appetizer I had the cornmeal encrusted oysters. They had a great oyster flavor but they were a little on the small side. Matt had the watermelon, tomato and chipotle salad which was delightful. Perfect level of spice/smokey flavor and the tomatoes and watermelon were an inspired combination.
Then we had an in-between course of the smoked trout. The portion was very generous and perfect for sharing. I liked how it kept the smoked theme of our meal going and the salad and dressing it came with was delectable.
For a main course I had the rockfish with a smoked shrimp risotto. The risotto was creamy without being too rich or heavy and the rockfish had an amazing crust on it from being panfried. Very, very good. Matt had the coulette steak with duck fat fries. The steak was one of our favorite cuts and the fries were crispy and hot.
After all that, we barely had room for dessert! I was intrigued by the creme brulee with different toppings but went with the coconut panna cotta which was the perfect size. It was light and creamy and the roasted pineapple paired well with it. Matt had the "wicked pissa" mini cupcakes which were rich and chocolatly.
All in all an excellent meal! The staff was top notch as well, not intrusive but available and very knowledgeable about the menu.