After hearing rave after rave on this board about Spring, I decided to go there for a birthday dinner on Sunday. While my overall impression was good, I would not give it a 'rave' review. There were several areas where I felt that a restaurant of this caliber (and price-- almost $100 pp incl tax&tip) did not deliver to my expectations.
My problems mainly had to do with the service.
1) At a restaurant that is this expensive, I would expect the waitstaff to be extremely well informed. I did not, however, get that impression from Spring. When I asked about the wine choices, the server was unable to offer any real advice... and when I narrowed the choices for her to asking if she could tell me the differences between the three Gruner Veltiners on the list (which ranged in price from $50-$80), she again, had no idea.
2) This is perhaps a minor pet peeve, but I get very annoyed when there are too many busboys hovering around me. I would like a long, relaxed meal, and feel rushed when someone is standing over my shoulder to whisk my plate away before I've even put my fork down.
3) While my entree was phenomenal, the appetizer and dessert were nothing quite as spectacular as I would have expected...
Without further ado...
What appeared to be tuna tartare and a hint of fresh mint wrapped in cucumber a la maki
-6 fresh oysters
These were delicious, fresh, flavorful
I was not the one who ordered this, so I only have one bite to go off of. It was however agreed to be the best appetizer of the three. Flavoring was pleasant and not overpowering.
-Tempura soft shell crab in ginger-lemon(?) sauce
Very good, though hard to taste the crab through the thick tempura bbatter. Sauce was good but overall I would have liked to taste more.
These blew me away. Definitely the highlight of the meal.
I got the red snapper topped with a few green beans thrown with a light vinaigrette, on a bed of lobster risotto (out of this world delicious). This was an amazing dish, the fish done to perfection, the risotto melt-in-your-mouth perfect, the accompanyign sauce incredible.
Other entrees ordered were: Australian Baramundi (fish) with trumpet mushrooms and monkfish wrapped in smoked pancetta (I think) on a bed of polenta. Good, but I think mine was better :)
I got a lemon parfait topped with mission figs. It was good but not *spectacular* in its creativity or flavors. Other desserts were: passionfruit panna cotta and yuzu cream beignets with strawberry-basil ice cream. The strawberry-basil ice cream was great. The yuzu cream (custard?) beignets tasted like...beignets. As in, the same kind of beignets that you can get for $1.
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