We visited Saul for a third time on Friday and, while I have always liked the place, this was my favorite meal there so far.
An appetizer of roasted pork belly served with a petit tart of fromage blanc, roasted cipollini, black lentils and cress might have benefited from a few additional grains of salt, but was pronounced very satisfactory by my companion. I had a confit of duck leg over grits, with roasted chestnuts and baby Brussels sprouts. While I preferred the confit itself that I had a week or two ago at 360, the sides here really made this dish pop. I am not a huge fan of sprouts, but these roasted little fellas were crispy, mild morsels with a caramelized sweetness worked nicely with the confit. Both starters were generous in portion.
We had the same entrée, roasted cod with a bacalao and potato cake, steamed cockles, Spanish chorizo and sliced piquillo peppers . Really, really good. Just loved the way the flavors worked, with the brininess of the cockles and the smoky sweetness of the chorizo and the peppers.
We finished with a cheese plate of half a dozen delights, including a Cashel blue and a lovely, buttery-soft Portuguese cheeseand Im darned if I can remember the name of it. It was a perfect finish to a great meal.
Both greeting and farewell were warm, the service was smooth and unobtrusive. Even the fork that I dropped (I do that a lot) was swiftly and quietly replaced. Truly, my only quibble with the place is that I would like to have had a saltcellar on the table. All the dishes but one were perfectly seasoned, but, still. Ive given up on pepper grinders, and I dont mean to impugn the integrity of the chef, but I do wish that this and other restaurants would give me a vote in that modest corner of my life.
By the way, we didn't partake, but the $30 prix fixe had plenty of appeal.