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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Pre-Class Pre-Theatre Prix-Fixe

Last night, with two hours to kill before session three of my Advanced Wine Essentials course, I decided to give the pre-theatre prix-fixe ($20) at East of Eighth a try. As I was surveying the menu, posted outside, I already knew what my selection for the first course would be: cumin-lemon marinated "grav' lox" with toast points and dill-marinated cucumbers.

cumin-lemon marinated "grav' lox"

At first taste, I was reminded of what made me fall in love with East of Eighth years ago. Simply: unfussy, delicious food. The salmon was so wonderfully flavorful and the dill-marinated cucumber was a such a pleasant and thoughtful touch. (and the portion was nicely-sized for an appetizer)

For my main course (which I'd also pre-selected out-of-doors) I chose: country pâté and three salad platter with haricot vert vinaigrettepotato salad and marinated tomatoes. Perhaps it was because I'd already filled up on the fresh baked bread basket with homemade carrot-cumin dressing and four varieties of bread, but when this dish arrived it seemed massive! 

country pâté and three salad platter

I was most excited about trying their pâté and from there, I had to choose what I wanted to eat most. I tasted everything on the plate, minus the tomatoes and it was all, more-or-less, an enjoyable experience. The county pâté was true to style--heavier on meat than on fat. And when I ran out of the Carr's water crackers (charming, really) I enjoyed the remainder of my pâté with the tasty potato salad.

flourless chocolate-espresso roulade

For dessert, all I had to do was confirm that the flourless chocolate-espresso roulade was on the menu--which it was. I must say that on some days, their roulade is not at its best. On my previous visit I'd asked if the roulade was fresh that day and expressed how sometimes it's moist and creamy while at others, a bit dry. My server responded that occasionally they don't put enough cream in the mixture which may constitute its dryness. Last night, I forgot to inquire but nonetheless, was pleased with a perfectly moist cake and a creamy filling.

For a little while, East of Eighth seemed to be experiencing some difficulty delivering their standards in service and quality, but it seems that lately... they're hitting those high notes once again.
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