we had a company dinner at BOA Santa Monica last night and the overall experience was decent, not good and definitely not great. we started off with a few cocktails and i must say, they sure do NOT make them stiff. i guess they are watching their overhead and skimped on the booze.
we ordered their oysters on a half shell and they were fresh and tasty. we ordered 2 varieties, with one variety being smaller and the other pretty much the standard size (sorry i do not recall the names), but the smaller variety was much sweeter. thumbs up to the oysters. next came the ahi tuna tartare which was good. nothing outstanding as it tasted like any other tuna tartare i've had.....which, in retrospect, might be a good thing. :D
as we chatted business and downed our cocktails, we ordered a few bottles of wines to accompany the meal. althought the server was very attentive when taking the drink and wine orders, it took at least 25-35minutes for the wine selections and subsequent cocktail orders to arrive at the table.
my meal started with the wedge salad and it was damn good. the lettuce was crisp and the dressing was perfect, nothing too overpowering, considering there were large chunks of bleu cheese doused liberally all over the place.
next came the steaks, i ordered the 40day aged new york strip, cooked rare with blue cheese crust. the presentation was minimalist but the aroma was divine. althought the steak was cooked closer to a medium rare finish (i like my steaks to moo when i cut into it), i was starving at this point and decided to suck it up and keep the steak. for the most part, the steak was tender and flavorful, but there were a few very gristley sections that really irked the hell out of me. for example, a few bites were oh so tender and then the next piece was like chewing on a rubberband. what gives? BOA really needs to up the quality control on the meat they purchase.
we ordered a bunch of sides for the table (fries, spinach, corn mashed potatoes) and they were all pretty good. the fries were the clear winners but they got soggy quickly. we should have eaten them faster. bah!
we ended the evening with more cocktails and the cotton candy. nothing special about the dessert. the same stuff can be had at the county fair for 1/4 the cost.
all in all, BOA was a decent experience but the food did not wow me so i doubt i will go back unless it is on someone elses dime. i think i am still a bit peeved about the gristle in the steak. grrr!