Thursday, March 17, 2011

Review: Brown Dog Cafe

As Kate mentioned in our last post, we love to get out as much as possible during Restaurant Week. On Monday, Jennifer and Beth – my two girlfriends from work – and I decided to try Brown Dog Cafe. We thought their Restaurant Week menu looked pretty diverse, and it's very close to where we work.

There were a lot of dishes to choose from on the menu, including a few vegetarian options, a couple Gluten Free, and even a few that meet the American Heart Association's dietary requirements (as part of the Christ Hospital Healthy Heart Restaurant Program).  There's definitely something for everyone!

Jennifer and I each started with the Artichoke Lollipop for an appetizer. This was an artichoke stuffed with manchego and goat cheese and breaded and fried in panko – of course I chose an option that was not on the AHA list! J Jennifer and I were both disappointed by these. We were both expecting it to be stuffed and oozing with manchego and goat cheese, and they both had little to no cheese in them. They were still good but not as good as we were expecting.

Beth decided on the Venison Ravioli for her first course. These were covered in a juniper-berry port reduction. Beth said these were delicious! They certainly looked interesting...

All three of us chose to get the house salad for our second course. This was a salad of mixed greens, gorgonzola cheese, dried cherries, candied pecans, marinated tomatoes and balsamic vinaigrette. As you can see by the picture, they did not short us on the cheese this time. The salad was really good…however it bordered on being a little too sweet due to the cherries and the candied pecans.
Last but not least – our entrees! We all three order filets and chose to pay the extra $5 to get it Oscar style… topped with béarnaise sauce, crab meat and asparagus. The best way to eat a filet in my opinion! We were all very pleased with our steaks. My only complaint was that I ordered mine medium and it came out medium rare. Not a huge complaint though because it was still delicious! I’d much rather have it undercooked than overcooked any day. The filet also came with sliced Yukon gold potatoes. These were pretty good – nothing special – but dipping them in the extra béarnaise sauce really helped. I’m pretty sure everything is good in béarnaise sauce!

That takes care of the food end of the review, but I wanted to briefly mention the service. I have to say…it was not the greatest. We went straight to Brown Dog from work, so we were there by 5:20. As you can imagine, the place was pretty empty at this point. One would think that would result in better service, since there were only a few other diners in there. Not the case! Our server seemed a little annoyed by the fact that she had to wait on us. When we asked for her opinion about different items on the menu, she was no help at all and gave short one-word answers. She didn’t elaborate on anything and didn’t crack a smile. I wouldn’t say the service was terrible. We got refills when needed, we all got the right food and we didn’t have to wait long in between courses, but it was certainly not exceptional. I often wonder if it’s because it’s Restaurant Week, and the server knows your bill is only going to be around $30 (unless you have a few drinks). Anyone else noticed this during Restaurant Week?

Brown Dog Cafe on Urbanspoon

No comments:

Post a Comment