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Restaurants & Bars

Valentine's Reserve Redux/ Those Pompous Josie Folks- NOT!!!

john gonzales | Feb 19, 200202:53 PM     1

Amazingly, considering my wife & I are such foodies, we made our first trip to Josie last night. Although I saw little merit in the recent complaints here about their Valentine's policy, I was still curious as to how the place would be and what if any reaction they had.
This place is fantastic. We eat in all of the top restaurants in town and had one of our best recent experiences. The room itself is very nice and comfortable, no minimalist here. The hostess, bartender, busboys, and waiters provide excellent friendly service with absolutely no attitude. Most gratifying of all were Josie herself and here husband. While he maintained the fine operation of the room, she was behind the line working her personal wizardry. Personally I always like to see, meet, and have the proprietor/chef controlling my meal. Josie, after perhaps hearing that I participate here came to visit with us once during and after the meal. She's both very skilled and passionate about her field, and a very affable person. We touched upon the whole brouhaha. It was nice to see that her reasoning was sound, but also that she was considerate of the impression made (including here).
The food was excellent. Great ingredients, some creative preparations, and a broad menu with plenty to select from. There should be no problem for anyone in finding something appealing. I had a delicious pumpkin gnocchi with a sage butter sauce to start and the wild boar tenderloin with white beans and fried rapini as an entree. My wife had the corn & mushroom soup with a corncake & shrimp floater followed by Grilled rack of Lamb with a balsmico finish and onion potato tart. Our friend had an endive, watercress, baked pear, salad with stilton and pecans; followed by the K.C. filet. We shared the lava cake and pot de creme for dessert. Every dish was excellent. They even happily made a few modifications for us. The specialty revolves around meats and/or game though there's fish and chicken too. The preps are all refined and not game ala the hunting lodge or the Flinstones.
The wine list is moderate in price and selection. Two of the three of us are in the wine biz and we have an extensive cellar so like to bring wine. They charged corkage but provided us with good, multiple glasses with correct wine service. FYI, we had a 95 Montelena and a 97 Arns. Both a bit before their time but great. We shared a tad with the waiter, Josie, and her husband which they graciously sampled. It's clear they're into wine & wine service as well as the food.
All in all the experience couldn't have been any better. We'll look forward to a soon to come and frequent return. I love some other top spots too, but have to rank Josie in the top half dozen spots. Try it, you'll like it!!

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