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Durham

Report: Vin Rouge, Durham

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Report: Vin Rouge, Durham

Webley Webster | Apr 21, 2005 10:18 AM

Having read mixed reviews on this board about Vin Rouge and having had mixed experiences at some of the other restaurants under the same management, it was with mixed expectations that my wife and I visited Vin Rouge for the first time this past Tuesday evening. I am pleased to report that we had a lovely meal there. The place won't win any awards for originality, but that's obviously not the goal. Since I'm in the camp that prefers well-prepared classics to dishes that are bold, innovative, and of unpredictable quality, Vin Rouge's approach suits me fine.

We started by splitting a carmelized onion and goat cheese tart. It was an ample serving for 2 as a starter and was quite delicious. There was plenty of butter in the crust; we did not mind at all. A salad garnish was simply but nicely dressed in oil and vinegar.

My wife had the liver with sauteed onions. It was covered in a dark brown sauce that definitely included bacon and had a nice sweetness to it. It complemented the liver without overwhelming it. She asked for the liver to be cooked to the chef's specs and was very happy with the results. I had the boudin blanc, served over fine-minced sauteed cabbage and apples and mashed potatoes. Again, nothing fancy, but quite delicious and very filling.

One appetizer and two entrees were plenty for us; we had no room for dessert. We each had two glasses of wine, a lovely Fleury that paired well enough with all the dishes--had we guessed it would we probably would have ordered a bottle, but I wanted to hold off to see whether I wanted something else with the boudin. The sommalier attended to this well, offering a beautiful half-bottle of Gewurtraminer for the entree, but it was a little pricey for my budget so I had to decline.

Pre-tip our meal came to $75, quite reasonable for what we got, I think. We'll definitely return.

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