The celery jello post below reminded me of the dessert we had recently at Gargoyles -- ants on a log. Celery ice cream on a peanut mound with raisin leather poking out of the top. This was not my favorite but was an interesting Santos-like play on the 50's cocktail party dish.
We arrived early and sat at the bar. Ordered (too many) apps and I had to have Maureen's sangria again to quench my thirst. A nice tall glass filled with not too sweet red sangria (there's a white version too) and garnished with the right amount of fresh fruit. One of us had a bourbon and the other tried an Enter the Dragon, for research purposes only ;-)
Appetizers were great -- my favorite being fresh rigatoni with braised oxtail, truffle oil and goat's cheese. The portion was probably too large but I didn't complain as I polished off the plate. Really good -- tangy goat cheese giving the dish a little lift. Deconstructed ceasar nothing to write home about, but then I love *my* ceasar dressing so that's never a hit with me. Softshell crab open-faced sandwich (I'm forgetting the funny name now) with green goddess dressing was good. The crabs are so big and brawny this year! Foie gras with eel was too much -- it was the bacon that put it over the top. I love rich food and have never tried this pairing, but next time I'd skip the bacon. Oh gosh, we had something else -- what am I forgetting?
We ordered the butterscotch dessert to go with the ants and it was delicious. I don't usually get all gaga for the desserts, but even I was blown away by this one. As we pushed away from the bar and took several deep breaths, Maureen comped us a cheese and fruit plate. She'd overheard me oogling over the cheesemongers at Formaggio and surmised we like cheese. I like the mongers, too, but that's off topic. The Humbold Fog Blue was so good schmeared on grilled bread with a little apple butter. Red grapes and candied nuts finished the plate, and I would definitely order that again if its on the menu.
We spent some cash -- a little over 50 bucks a head with two drinks each. Or three, hic. A little pricy for drinks and apps, but it was a ton of food and very high quality. Great bartending and an interesting culinary experience every time keeps me coming back to Gargoyles.
Be prepared -- the bar was completely full by 7:00 on a Tuesday night.