It had been a while since I had gone out to a fun dinner. A while, of course, meaning about a week. I admit I'm quite spoiled in that I have a handful of friends who love to experience new places or take me to places I have yet to experience, and a husband who willingly eats his way through any city we visit.
"I'm taking you to Blanca" typed the keyboard on the other end of my g-chat conversation. I had heard a great deal about Blanca, mostly from Blair (pictured below) and Jean (Blair's mom, my food soul mate) and was anxious to try it out.
We were seated in the middle of the restaurant which provides great eavesdropping opportunities for those so inclined. My heart was pitter pattering as the waiter approached our table with menus and wine list in hand. "What should I order? Is this a one or two glasses of wine kind of night? Is the chef's tasting menu worth trying? Do they have something with goat cheese?" The excitement and anticipation of the evening floated through my head with great expectation.
And then he spoke.
Condescending rudeness dripped off of every word that left the waiter's mouth. He explained to us that he was an expert, and that this restaurant was of the highest caliber so all of the prices were an amazing value. Typing it out doesn't make it seem quite as dramatic, but believe me when I say this waiter was condescending and we all felt snubbed (even Glenn, who never feels that way!) After our initial shock at the behavior of this man, we decided we would not let him ruin our fun, so we continued paroozing the menu. (side note: after we ordered, and he realized we were not just ordering a side of fries to share, his attitude had a sudden change. hmm.) I decided on a glass of the pouilly fuisse to start and would then work my way into a cabernet or merlot. Excellent choice, according to Mr. Expert and my taste buds!
For starters we had:
1. Truffled french fries - perfectly crisp and sprinkled with fresh herbs
2. Boneless baby back ribs - not my favorite but very tender and soaked in a molasses BBQ sauce. Matt seemed to love these.
3. Dungeness crab cakes - three baby crab cakes with three different salads and aioli's - tempted me to go to Costco and buy the fresh lump crab meat to make my own.
4. Seafood sausage corn dogs - they make their own seafood sausage and then do a corn dog breading and fry them up. These things were out of this world. Served with green tomato ketchup (a little more tart than regular ketchup) and a violet mustard which was very fun.
All of the starters were tasty and unique. So far Blanca's food was delicious!
For the main entree I ordered a blackened Louisiana redfish. I had never had redfish before, but I enjoyed it. It reminded me a little bit of snapper. My redfish was accompanied by garlic and parsley risotto and butter poached crawfish. I won the entree lottery.
Glenn ordered his classic braised shortrib, although this time it was braised in merlot, adding some extra depth to the meal. The shortrib was served with a Bermuda onion marmalade which I had some questions about. I've been to Bermuda. It's a strip of land in the middle of the ocean with 4 resorts and a bunch of shacks, where do they grow onions?
Blair had the roasted free range chicken (the only way to charge more than $20 for chicken is to call it free range) and macaroni and cheese, which she kindly shared with the table. I enjoyed the macaroni, but I still think C Level's lobster mac n cheese is the best I've tried.
Matt branched out (ha!) with the filet mignon topped with foie gras. When it came he asked us what foie gras was, and we made him taste it before we told him. That was kind of fun. I couldn't figure out if he was going to turn green in the face or not, but he seemed to really enjoy it and ate the whole thing!
Now came the really fun part - dessert! We ordered the dessert sampler, which was miniature portions of four of their most popular desserts, as well as a chocolate mousse cake.
I apologize I did not write down the exact desserts or what was in them (it was the end of glass number two..), but I can tell you the chocolate cake was my personal favorite as it was served with an almond bark. I believe there was a meyer lemon cheesecake which was fresh and flavorful, along with a home made cappuccino gelato or mousse that had the perfect amount of coffee flavor in it.
All in all, Blanca was a great place and I'm glad I finally got to try it out. Blair and I have discussed this multiple times and figured out that the best way to do Blanca would be to sit in the bar and order multiple appetizers, desserts, and drinks. Although their food was very good, the outstanding portions of the menu lie in the before and after meal options.