Went on a Sunday night for the first time, and was pretty underwhelmed.
Food: the good bits were the arugula salad and the bread. Salad was nicely dressed and delicately balanced with heirloom cherry tomatoes. The baguette and the heartier little bread that came with the charcuterie plate were pretty lovely.
We also ordered the wild salmon with wild mushrooms and asparagus veloute, and the charcuterie plate.
Salmon: the mushrooms were super tasty. The veloute could have been interesting, but was way too salty, and the wild salmon was overly soft, almost mushy texture. It also had a very slight, not-in-the-good-way-fishy taste to it (it’s salmon, not mackerel!).
Charcuterie: there are so many good plates in town, I guess it was a mistake to order it here in the first place. The salami was decent, the lardon tasty (tasty tasty fat) but contained pretty much zero meat. The head cheese was really bland, with a mixed texture that blended creamy and bready – not exactly what I envision in a head cheese. Even the onion jam was just okay.
Overall, the menu had a bit of a try-hard vibe to it. Too many elements in each dish to make it !INTERESTING!, instead of focusing on making it tasty. Too bad, too – I love that they use free-range meats and local veggies when possible.
Room: You know, they could really capitalize on the ‘hidden’ location -- instead the approach to the front door is odd and unattractive, and the room layout is somewhere between a cozy bar and a family rec room. The room is a great size and I liked the low moody lighting but the details didn’t really work for me. It’s a mix of ‘nice’ (Buckminster fuller-like repro chairs, original fir flooring), ‘cheap-but-trendy’ (plywood bar, exposed bulbs, rags for napkins) and just cheap (bad ikea coffee table, terrible saggy leather couch) – just not a very good mix, IMAO.
Tipping: the atm automatically suggests a 20% tip. You can cancel it and tip whatever you want, of course, but it still seemed a bit presumptuous.
Oh, the drink selection was pretty good for a small resto.