After several glowing reviews, my wife and I had dinner at James. I have spent a few days thinking about my meal and wanted to offer a few points on my experience for those interested in eating there:
Pros - Great atomosphere and very intimate. Good service and knowledgeable staff (which is a must for a restaurant at this price point). Great selection of micro-brews and cocktails with various varieties of infused vodkas, scotch and whiskey. On the food front, I thought some of the menu items were very inventive (namely the sweetbreads).
Cons - My biggest issue was the portions. I am a fan of the small plate philosophy as a way of building a meal, but it is critical that the follwing be followed: you need more than 3 courses, the food has to be served in an efficient, timely manner and the dishes have to complement each other. During my meal, I found the portions incredibly small. The risotto was very soupy and the rise was undercooked and not in an al dente sort of way. Also, no spoon was given to soak the little that was on the plate. Ditto for the rest of the courses...Beautifully executed halibut, octopus, mousse, but not enough on the plate to be meaninful; especially, at that price point they are charging. What I would suggest to the folks at James is: Less is more is fine, but supplement with a more robust menu offering, because it unfortunately left old porcus wanting more.