I don't know what it is lately with trying new restaurants. This weekend we decided to try Clementine's in Avon and still no luck. Don't get me wrong, the restaurant does have some positives. The design of the rooms are quaint with antique lighting and wall coverings while the service is friendly and efficient. The food on the other hand was generally disappointing. If anything, the appetizers outshine the entrees and desserts.
For appetizers we tried the Clementine's Scallops (nothing but a plate of scallops and couldn't discern the advertised Dijon bacon sauce), Fried Brie with Nut Crust (good – how bad can fried cheese be?), Potatoes Dauphine (not puffed like a true Dauphine but more like a potato pancake – not bad), and the Magnolia Salad – spinach, blue cheese, walnuts, warm mushrooms with a balsamic vinaigrette (liked the cooked mushrooms but thought there wasn't enough dressing – nothing special nonetheless). For entrees the table ordered the Blackened Tuna, Blackened Tilapia, Crawfish Etoufee, and the recommended Ravioli special (which purportedly sells out early every time it's offered). None of the entrees impressed. I recall the Ravioli being advertised as being served in a cream sauce instead it was served in a pool of oil and balsamic vinegar. The Etoufee lacked that deep roux flavor that one normally associates with an Etoufee. Instead, this one tasted of tomato sauce.
We decided to move on to desserts hoping our luck would improve. We ordered the Bread Pudding, Chocolate Lava Cake, and the German Blond (yellow cake topped with pecans, caramel and coconut). The Bread Pudding was disappointing. First, I'm not a fan of raisins in my bread pudding. Second, I found the pudding to be a little too loose. Last and more importantly, I was a little put off by what appeared to be the same bread as served in the bread basket (who wants sesame seeds in their bread pudding?). The German Blond was also a throw away. Although the kitchen may have used their own cake, it looked and tasted like store bought pound cake topped with candied pecans, coconut and caramel. The Chocolate Lava Cake on the other hand was the only satisfying dessert served that evening. Now a couple of stray thoughts: most appetizers cost more than $15 (a little too expensive for me), ditch the vinyl table clothes as they were out of place in this restaurant, and the second dining room was much cozier and welcoming than the first. All in all I would give Clementine's a pass.
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