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Restaurants & Bars 3

Saturday at Julienne and Cinnabar - longish

Will Owen | May 16, 200507:22 PM

Well, we certainly made up for all our usual $10-per-head meals! Met the posse for lunch at Julienne in San Marino, and after a pretty long (but pleasant) wait we were seated, and treated to the usual very friendly and competent service. Two of us had the splendid roast lambwich, one with some very nice soup, and I tried out the beef filet sandwich with blue cheese and stuff. Very tender and flavorful, but the frites were a major disappointment: I like mine without skins, please, and they were tepid and soggy besides. What with the swell surroundings and wanting to prolong the experience, we happily submitted to the dessert tray, and each of us got something different for a change instead of one dessert and four forks. One lemon tart, one bread pudding, one strawberry tart, and I got a plate of just about the best cookies I've ever et and a so-so espresso. A nice flat hundred bucks (with tip) for the four of us, and well worth it.

In the evening, we had reservations for what we understood was to be Cinnabar's next-to-last night. Met our buds at the bar, and, yes, they were running low on wine - only by-the-glass reds left were a cab and a pinot noir. Everyone else was experimenting with the extensive antique-cocktails menu, but I stuck with my usual circa-1952 martini (gin, up, 5-to-1) since it's ridiculously hard to get a good one nowadays. Dinner was a mixed bag of really good and close calls, as I understand it's always been there - my salmon was a lovely piece of wild King for which the sesame crust did no favors at all. It was perfectly cooked... unfortunately, about five minutes before I got it. But there's no point in going on about it - this was strictly a nostalgia trip, a fond farewell. Still caught up in the indulgence thing, we did dessert AGAIN and this time wound up with damages around $80 apiece, not counting the bar tab. Wotthehell...

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