Friday, August 20, 2010

Bourbon Steak

As a farewell to Restaurant Week, I met my neighbor for lunch at Bourbon Steak Restaurant in the Four Seasons. I have heard good things about Michael Mina's fish restaurant in San Francisco, but was wary of a place with a celebrity chef name but not a celebrity chef in house. I had not been inside since the renovation, and the updates to the lobby and the new restaurant space were marked improvements from the dated decor. I liked the light, modern atmosphere and the use of a tan wood throughout the room, instead of the traditional dark wood and clubby steakhouse feel. The bar prides itself on using premium, small batch cordials, and freshly squeezed fruit juices in their cocktails. This is the Celerickey, made with Hendricks gin, fresh lime, housemade ginger simple syrup and celery juice. Very refreshing and light. The bar also creates "zero-proof" libations and handmade sodas. This is the cherry-flavored soda called "Cherry Smash". They also have Black Raspberry Cream and Peaches and Cream.
Restaurant Week lunch appetizer - grilled fresh sardines with piperade and a garden sauce. Nicely grilled. Restaurant Week entree - Gryffon's Aerie Grass-fed Beef French Dip with Pleasant Ridge Reserve cheese and crispy onions. The bacon in the middle detracted from the taste according to my neighbor. Definitely not enough au jus for dipping. The cheese is from Wisconsin and the beef is from Albemarle County, VA
Korean barbeque salmon burger - salmon topped with kimchee and kochujang paste, on top of cucumbers with a jalapeno and pickle. Not quite an authentic Korean taste, but an interesting fusion of flavors. Pretty messy but good.
Trio of duck fat fries flavored with truffles, Old Bay seasoning and aged cheddar. Dipping sauces included housemade ketchup, malt vinegar aoili and housemade bbq sauce.
"Melba" - playful construction of light Greek-style frozen yogurt, delicate raspberry meringues, Warm Path Valley peaches, griddled poundcake and Blis bourbon barrel aged maple syrup. Best to have a bit of everything on the spoon to fully appreciate how the flavors meld together.
Classic brownie sundae. Delightful vanilla ice cream, chocolate cookie crumbles, warm chocolate sauce and rich chocolate brownie squares. A chocolate lover's dream.
The Restaurant Week option offers a nice introduction to the menu at $20.10. I chose the bar special that included the fries, handmade soda, brownie sundae and the salmon burger for $21, which is available every day in the bar for lunch. With their commitment to sourcing quality products, I bet their Gryffon's Aerie grass-fed burger with bacon and Pleasant Ridge Reserve cheese is fantastic.

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