The husband and I had a lovely anniversary dinner at Ten Tables Saturday night, and a lovely brunch Sunday morning at Bon Savor, which has taken the place of the Cantata.
I made 7PM reservations a week ago; the table was ready at 645, when we showed up early. This was our first time there, and we will be back again. Service was prompt and friendly, but not overly familiar. The space is lovely, even if it was a little cramped toward the end, as the house filled up. The owner seated us, and the male waiter came out quickly with an amuse bouche of a pork and fennel mousse-- two mounded spoonfuls of lovely, flavorful porkiness. Bread was Sel de la Terre baguette slices and slices of SdlT Fig bread-- served with a Cretan olive oil that had notes of green banana. The waiter wrote down the brand, Davini, when I said how good it was, and advised that it was available at Whole Foods.
The husband ordered the beet souffle with blue cheese cream to start, and then the pork tenderloin with carrots and parsnips for his entree. I had the cream of mushroom soup and the rib eye steak with peruvian lima beans. The waiter's suggestion of a 2001 Chateau Malmaison ($36 for the bottle) was a good one, and went well with both our meals.
My husband said his souffle wasn't super beet-y, but liked the blue cheese sauce. His pork was cooked perfectly, tender and not-mushy, full of lovely pork flavor as were the carrots and parsnips, which were very simply prepared with butter and thyme.
My cream of mushroom soup was very mushroomy, without any detectable dairy in the soup. A nice change from what I have called "brown butter soup" at other places. It was perfectly creamy and a good sized portion. My rib eye steak was perfectly seared on the outside, and cooked to an even medium rare throughout. There were nice bits of fat still on the steak, and there was so much that for once, I could not finish my beef. The meat was clearly grass fed, and well butchered, an even thickness throughout. The peruvian lima beans were very simple, in a parsely/oil/butter dressing, and if I liked lima beans, I would have loved these. But I wasn't disappointed at all, and thought that they were good enough to make me eat a few forkfuls in spite of myself.
I ended up adding a little salt to my meal, but I am a salt fiend, and I think that everything was nicely seasoned despite my addition from the nice pottery salt cellar on the table. The cooking philosophy, of simple preparations, done exceedingly well, was a nice change from complicated cooking seen elsewhere in town.
The husband had brioche french toast with homemade vanilla ice cream for dessert. My goodness, it was heavenly. I had the pear crisp with fresh whipped cream, and while it was very good, I wish I'd stolen my husband's dessert. He had a cup of coffee, and I had a glass of sherry ($8) that was a very generous and delicious pour (Pedro Ximinez Barbadrillo(sp?)). Dinner took an unhurried two hours, with proper pacing of courses and the enjoyment of watching the chef and the line cook deal with the orders so calmly and competently. The check was $117.00 before tip, and very reasonable for the experience. We will deifinitely be back, if not for a full meal, then maybe for some appetizers and wine. We'll probably do the wine dinner soon.
The website is tentables.net.
The new owners have kept the brick-orange paint on the walls, and gotten rid of the big round table that used to dominate the room when it was the Cantata. In its place are three four-tops that can be rearranged for larger groups. There are orange and yellow checked tablecloths covered with white paper on the tables, and the tableware is plain, white, and stylish.
They are open for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and brunch. I'm embarrassed to have forgotten already what else there was on the lunch and dinner menus, but remember that there was some overlap with the savory crepes available at brunch. The brunch menu is short: omelets to order, eggs benedict, and crepes with various fillings, sweet and savory. There are some muffins/bagels, juice, coffee (plain and french press), teas and dessert crepes.
The husband's omelet, with smoked gouda, onions, and tomatoes was a thin three egg omelet accompanied by thin-sliced, well-seasoned red potato homefries. Coffee mugs were generous, and the tap water came in a carafe, with two generously sized waterglasses. (Little waterglasses, done in two gulps, are a pet peeve of mine, though maybe it's just me.) My chicken and mushroom crepes with roasted vegetables were delicious. The crepe was ultra fresh, eggy and delicate. The chicken and mushrooms came in a wonderful cream/butter/sherry(?) sauce that was right out of Julia Child. The roasted vegetables were broccoli and zucchini, and tasty. I would have licked my plate if the place were less crowded. We shared two nutella crepes with whipped cream for dessert.
The apparent owners, a Spanish-speaking woman and another man, were floating around, checking on tables, refilling water, and expediting orders. There were two waiters in addition, and our meals came out very quickly, and at the perfect temperature. Service was good and friendly. The check was $28 for everything. Severl friends of the lady owner and the waitress came in, and by 1115 when we left, there were folks outside waiting for tables. The lady owner checked in with us as she delivered our nutella crepes, asking very sweetly if this was our first time in, and hoping we'd be back, which we said we would. There was "world music" on in the background, not too loud, and the right upbeat tempo for a sunny Sunday morning.
We agreed that while we will miss the cooking of the Cantata's proprietress, Bon Savor is a good replacement, with better service and timing. I will definitely want to go back for the eggs benedict, which comes with several alternatives to ham, including asparagus and tomatoes.