I know it’s not everyone’s favorite but I was caught without a reso at the last minute and opentable.com had this available. Old friends all of a sudden in town. And I figured I like Mercer Kitchen so how bad to this stable be.
The front staff was great, hostess extremely pleasant, no problem with a good table. I give the front staff a 9 on a scale of 1-10.
Drinks – My normal Pelligrino and a Chopin martini for my buddy. When he re-ordered they came back and told us they ran out of Chopin. What is this a “C” list resto, running out of a good Vodka. Can only give it a 2 for running out.
Sesame rice crackers with peanut sauce. Served instead of bread. And butter. Fair at best, the peanut sauce was nothing to write home about. I give it a 3.
Apps. – I ordered the raw tuna with avocado wrapped in rice paper. The rice paper must have been 40 pound paper versus thin sheets that I was expecting. The spice waaaay overshadowed the tuna, too much, too much, I could not really taste it. And the dipping sauce did nothing to the dish. I give this a 3 as well. Mrs Jfood ordered the shrimp satay. We both thought these would be grilled, but they came fried, our mistake for not asking. She gave the dish a 4.
Entrees – I ordered the Black Sea Bass fragrant coconut juice, parsnip purée and lime. A small piece of steamed sea bass, some puree and a quarter sized serving of pureed lime. The server poured the coconut juice on top. It was well prepared but was pretty flavorless. I give it another 3. Mrs Jfood ordered the Salmon poppy seed crust, lemon-chili syrup and grapefruit confit. This was a winner. The salmon had some flavor (obviously wild) and the crunchiness of the sesame seeds with the chili syrup was really nice. I give this a score of 8.
Desserts – We took a pass given the other courses. Cut our losses.
Service – Fair at best. Waiter was a little condescending, only showed up at the table to give us special, take our order and give us the check. Never came by to see how things were. I can only give it a 3.
So overall, Vong gets a 4 on the Jfood scale, which means it is a no-returner. To many other choices in the neighborhood.