My SO took me out to Café Du Lac for my Birthday this past weekend. As I haven’t dined out much recently, I was really looking forward to a relaxing well-prepared meal. My expectations were never met.
The starters came out in good time. The SO had the fondue parmesan; little deep fried parmesan & gruyere ‘cheese sticks’ with a tiny frisee salad. I can’t say anything great about the dish, but I guess they did deliver a ‘gourmet cheese stick’. I opted for the salmon tartare which was a mixture of salmon, both smoked and fresh, as well as shallots, capers, and some fresh herbs. Tasty – sure, okay. Home smoked – I think not. Frozen/thawed/packaged is my guess.
So at this point, the meal was okay at best.
The entrees came out, and this is where I was left completely deflated. The SO opted for the “pan-seared walnut crusted grouper with purple asparagus raft and morel jus”. This is a direct quote from their menu. The fish came out cold, slightly fishy, no walnut crust, and no purple asparagus. It wasn’t horribly fishy, but for someone who cooks fish weekly, I have never served anything of that caliber.
My entrée was the “duck magret drizzled with a red beet jus and served with a potato rosti”. Once again I use a quotation from their menu. Potato rosti you say? Where? I sure as hell didn’t get one. Instead, I received some sort of ‘scallion mashed potato’. The worst part – my “duck magret” was 4 medallions of duck breast. Piece # 1 was fat only. The other 3 pieces, once dissected from their fat, totaled about 3 ounces of meat. 4 ounces would be an exaggeration. The meat was of poor quality and execution. It was cooked too well, with fat not properly rendered. No buttery fatty ducky goodness, just a chewy fatty wad. The breast meat was more reminiscent of liver than of duck. I felt insulted and offended. Hands down, the WORST piece of duck I have ever eaten by a long shot!
I would typically have a discreet chat with the waiter about the entrees, but this conversation didn’t happen for two reasons. 1) It was my birthday, and I didn’t feel like complaining. 2) Should I really have to complain? Really? How many mistakes can you make with two mains? I count eight BIG ones minimum. These entrees shouldn’t have ever made it to our table. Three items were substituted unbeknownst to us. Would this not be something that should be brought to our attention? Were the chef and waiter satisfied with what they prepared/served?
The plates sat in front of us for 20 minutes after we had finished eating, with my credit card in full view. We ended up flagging down another waiter to take care of the bill. Three beers, a glass of pinot, apps & mains $120 + tip.
I left feeling hungry, cheated and disappointed.
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