Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Dinner @ Boulevard

[ Originally posted December 31, 2011 ]

Dinner @ Boulevard, celebrating being back in SF and satisfying my craving for some seafood after not having any for almost two weeks!

Not pictured was the winning dish of the night: PAN ROASTED CALIFORNIA SWORDFISH Fried Artichokes with Garlic & Thyme, Lemon Aioli, Wood Roasted Local Calamari with Lemon & Capers Braised Italian Butter Beans, Fava Leaf Pesto.

The swordfish was well cooked, the calamari delicate and not remotely rubbery, the beans delicious, the artichokes nicely fried (and I don't usually care much for artichokes), and the whole thing tied together with a delightful sauce. Would totally order next time!

Maine lobster ravioli - Sepia Ink Pasta Filled with Maine Lobster & Melted Leeks, with Lobster Sabayon & Chanterelles.
This dish was good, but nothing spectacular. The pasta had a nice flavor from the sepia, the chanterelles had a nice bold flavor, and the lobster filling was generous, but somehow the flavors just didn't pop.

Dungeness Crab Salad - Hearts of Palm Carpaccio Blood Orange, Lemon & Chervil.
Local dungeness crab! The crab meat was very sweet and flavorful, making the crab salad quite delicious. I thought it paired wonderfully with the blood orange segments. The hearts of palm were pretty flavorless however and really didn't add anything to the dish. Would certainly order again.

Local Petrale Sole Ala Plancha - Saffron & Fennel Potato Risotto Mediterranean Mussels with Artisanal Chorizo & Late Summer Peppers Sauteed Bloomsdale Spinach.
Decent dish. The sole was well cooked, but at the end of the day, it is just sole, and isn't all that flavorful or interesting. The mussels with chorizo made me realize that mussels can be quite tasty, and the potato "risotto" was cute, but overall the dish suffered from over salting and fell a little flat. The spinach however was DELICIOUS. This dish reminds me of how I feel about Prospect (Boulevard's sister restaurant): good ingredients, good execution, but never blowing me away.

Mandarin Dreamsicle Brulee - Vanilla Custard with Mandarin Conserves Layer, Blood Orange Froth Meyer Lemon Sherbet "Ice Cream Sandwich"
Ok, I'm a dessert lover, but this one was just weird.

The chocolate cookie and lemon sherbet ice cream sandwich really didn't work. We disassembled it and it turned out that the cookies were delicious on their own, and the sherbet was delicious on its own, but combined they really, really didn't work. And why was it sitting on top of marshmallow fluff (which was totally yummy). And um ... why did it come with my crème brûlée ?

Speaking of the brulee ... topped with way way too much blood orange froth. I don't mind froths/foams/etc but there was just way too much of this sweet stuff. And the white chocolate pieces on top were a really strange texture to add in there, and ... they were white chocolate, which is kinda just crappy to begin with. Now for the good - the caramelized sugar layer was perfectly done and delicious, perfectly caramelized. The custard was pretty good as well, and the mandarin conserves in the bottom were pretty nice.

Overall, a very strange combination of things that didn't quite work, but of course I did devour it.
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