Sunday, October 5, 2008


krissy is in green
beth is in black
brian and i have season tickets to playhouse in the park with our friends jenny and john. this month's show being emma, the husbands decided to bail and beth and jessie stepped in. for dinner, we decided to go to nectar.

beth and i were the first to arrive at 6pm. and when i say first to arrive, i mean for the entire restaurant. i guess reservations weren't warranted after all.
seriously, that sort of thing is completely intimidating to me. i'm ok with eating dinner by myself, but being the first one in the place is hard for me. in fact i arrived a few minutes before krissy and stood outside.

our server was super nice and conversational, and we chatted with her about various things while we waited for jessie to arrive (jenny was meeting us for dessert only).

for a girls' night out, a little sparkle is always welcome, so we decided on a bottle of gruet blanc de noir, from new mexico.
i was interested in trying this as we are heading to new mexico next week and i hope to do a few wine tastings while i am out there. this winery appears to be located close to where we will be (santa fe and albuquerque).
for the first course, we ordered the artisan cheese plate.
the three cheeses (left to right) were a french cheese i didn't catch the name of (3 cream?), a 4 year aged cheddar, and an aged goat cheese. garnishes were fig chutney, chestnut honey, local concord grapes, quince paste, chorizo, and these amazing almonds. everything was so good. i couldn't even choose a favorite among them, although i was quite fond of the creamy french cheese and the fig chutney. everytime beth tried something, it was her new favorite. which is understandable.
its true. everything was my new favorite. looking back i have to say that i enjoyed the french cheese and surprisingly (to me) the fig chutney. i enjoyed the chorizo very much too......oh and yes the almonds were wonderful too.....see even looking back i can't pick a favorite.
for me, the entree was very difficult to decide on. i had it narrowed down to 4 and we started doing random number selection. i ended up with one of the starters, the scallops, as my entree. i did not regret the roads not taken.
the scallops were complemented nicely by the crispy prosciutto (i didn't know you could make prosciutto stand up straight - it's meat for god's sake!), a local bean and cherry tomato salad, and roasted garlic cream. it was divine, tender and light.

jessie ordered one of my second choices, which was the mediterranean plate. it also looked pretty yummy.

i ordered the fresh greens with a curry vinaigrette. it had local apples and a few other garnishes. the dressing was fabulous. sweet yet tangy. i was very satisfied. i second that - the dressing was fabulous.

the photo of beth's soup turned out really well. it even looks good to me, and i don't like beans that much. definitely not as much as beth.

i love beans, i could and often do eat them every day. this soup was exactly as good as you would expect. it was a white bean soup with basil.

finally, dessert, which in many ways, is the whole purpose of the meal for me. beth is somehow able to resist, but i never can. i was completely sold when our server mentioned the berry napoleon with lemon curd and basil and lemon sorbet.

looks and sounds fantastic, right? wrong. i was so disappointed. i'll start with the good aspects and move to the bad. the lemon curd was excellent, and the pastry flaky and enjoyable. the sorbet was interesting on its own. and there was pomegranate involved, which is fun and always evokes greek mythology for me. however, the overall execution, the harmony of the dish, was lacking. it was utter cacophony. there were too many competing flavors, too much tart and not a balance of sweet. i felt my mouth puckering. it was honestly almost unpleasant, overwhelming. but of course i ate it all anyway. i kept hoping i was just not getting the right combination in my mouth and eventually i would hit upon the bite that would allow me to see the genius of the dish. it never happened.

the spoonful of chocolate mousse i snagged from jessie was better, but still not great. very dark and rich.

overall, i thought nectar was extraordinary, ambrosial even, but next time i would skip dessert, which is really saying something for me.

Nectar on Urbanspoon

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