1) People who do not keep kosher.
2) People who keep kosher and live in one of the few places in the world outside of Israel that actually has decent kosher resteraunts.
3) People who keep kosher and live in Israel.
But I am still purrrrring an hour later -- the more so because it was so totally unexpected.
So last night, I went with Aaron to get pizza (Becky was not feeling well and Aaron has no respect for the traditions of our people -- mind, the chinese resteraunt here is nothing to write home about . . .) and happened to notice that the Kosher Pastry Oven was still open.
The Kosher Pastry Oven is, as one might imagine, a bakery. They also do a reasonably nice dairy cafe during the lunch hours. A bit pricey, but it makes a pleasant change from pizza. But I had not known that since September, they had hired a chef and were now doing Italian/Morrocan fusion cuisine at night. And that they now had a beer and wine license and were doing all manner of interesting froofy drinks.
I did not linger last night. Aaron is a pizza guy. But tonight, with Becky feeling better and Aaron up in Boston with his grandparents, we decided to go and have an evening out.
Becky started with the tuna tartar and I started with the wild mushroom tart. The mushroom tarte was quite good, but not exceptional and -- given the quality of the rest of the meal -- I am retroactively disappointed. It was much less a traditional tart and more of a wild mushroom cheese melt. Still, it was quite nice and it only pales by comparison.
The tuna tartar was delicious, served in a tart plum sauce over scallions, garnished with a bit of fried lemon grass and accompanied by grilled strips of flat bread. The tuna was the Grade A sashimi tuna that actually melts in your mouth and tastes like butter from the high fat content that disolves at body temperature. The tuna was citrusy and had some hot oil or charif that gave a very pleasant, controlled heat. Not enough to be spicey, but enough to wake up the taste buds (a degree that takes much more control than just burning your mouth).
Then came a fresh spring salad with a citrus vinagrette sauce. Crisp and refreshing and perfect to clear the palate.
For entree, Becky had the Chilean sea bass and I had linguini mattenucha made with fresh linguine cooked just right, fresh tomatoes, real black olives (not that rubbery canned stuff), anchovies, capers, and again a well controlled heat. Becky's sea bass had crispy skin -- a minor culinary miracle unappreciated by those who have never ordered fish in a kosher resteraunt where if the skin is not fried, it clings like a soggy, slimy blanket. It also came with exsquisite garlic mashed potatoes.
I indulged in a glass of the Goose Bay pinot noir, which made a very pleasant accompaniment. During the meal, for no reason I can determine, we received a complimentary cocktail made of frozen carmelized apple, champaign and bit of watermelon liquer blended together into one of them froofy drinks. It made a very nice dessert, marred only by the fact that I had seen Enchanted the previous evening and kept thinking of it as AppleTINI in a very cheesy Italian accent.
Anyway, we were well pleased and the staff were quite nice and friendly. The service was a bit slow, but pleasant if one is prepared to enjoy a civilized night out. The prices were reasonable. About $10 for a good sized appetizer and in the $20-25 range for an entree.