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Restaurants & Bars 3

Eva - A Review

Lauren | Sep 7, 2001 01:59 PM

My husband and I finally visited Eva last night. Actually, we had tried to go once a couple of months ago but they told us they had enough reservations to fill the place (although it looked empty when we were there) so we went across the street to Luau. When we walked by after dinner, they were still empty - go figure. Anyway, on to this visit. We got there a little before 7:00 pm and all but two tables were full. They told us one table was reserved and mumbled something about the other table. After several whispered conversations and consultation with, who I gather is the owner/husband, they moved the table in question (it was situated uncomfortably close to the table next to it) and we were seated. I immediately missed the warmth and comfort of the Provence feel of Brie and Bordeaux but other than that, the dining room is pretty much the same. The cheese shop has been converted into a very large bar. The tables in the bar are not linen-covered, but that appears to be the only difference. I don't think they allow smoking in the bar, at least no one smoked in there last night. We were seated for at least a full 5 minutes before anyone approached us. I was planning to sip a cocktail while perusing the menu, so I was not happy about that. The menu itself is small but complete. There is a selection of vegan, vegetarian, fish, meat, and game to choose from, broken into firsts, in-betweens, and seconds. We decided to start by splitting a "first" of fried squash blossoms. I have never had these before, but they have been featuring them all week on the Food Network so I was looking forward to trying them. What a major disappointment. I was expecting something lightly battered (like tempura) but what we got was heavily battered and very greasy tasting. The blossoms had steamed in such a heavy batter and were limp and damp. We next split a "in-between". A salad described as baby greens with pistachio vinaigrette and baby beets. This would have been a great salad if they had, indeed, used baby greens. Instead, the greens were mature, tough and bitter. For "seconds" I had sherry braised rabbit with chorizo bread pudding. This was served with salad greens that were tossed with the sherry reduction. I have never eaten rabbit before so maybe this is the way it always is, but there was a distinct vinegar taste to it and it was tough and stringy. I did not like it at all so I skipped the rabbit and went straight for the greens and bread pudding. These were very good. The sherry reduction was flavorful and the chorizo a nice kick to the savory bread pudding. My husband had the pork loin. I had only one bite but it was tough and overdone and he did not enjoy it. For dessert we shared the peach cardamom ice cream with caramel sauce. It was the best thing we had. The ice cream was not too sweet and the cardamom an interesting complement to the peach. I ordered coffee and Sambuca, but our wait person had to return to tell me that they didn't have Sambuca. A couple of general comments: everything was under seasoned and we felt the need to use salt (and, of course, there was not salt on our table!). The kitchen is open to the dining room and I felt it was very distracting to the dining experience. Our wait person was new and I could see all of her nervousness and insecurites as the other employees gave her pointers. They desperately need a dining room manager. Throughout the course of the evening, there was some turmoil about seating people when the dining room was full. They ended up seating people in the bar, but I know some people got frustrated and went to Luau. It was yet another distraction from the dining experience. I will give it another try because I feel it is important to make sure this was not an "off" night. Maybe my expectations were too high from what Brie and Bordeaux was and what I have read on this board but I was not impressed.

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