Mr. Kim Chee and I were set up to go on a rare, childless date, and were in Rochester for the weekend. We wanted to go somewhere we hadn't been before, and somewhere we knew we would have a great time and a great meal. We got a recommendation to go to The Restaurant.
|From the restaurant's website|
It used to be known as Chardonnay. I always wanted to eat there, but as a high schooler with unromantic boyfriends and then later as a poor college student, it just didn't fit into the budget. I was so glad to finally get the opportunity to try it out!
The Restaurant tries to use local ingredients--a true farm-to-table experience. I noticed on their menu that the trout in their Trout Piccata is from Bullfrog Farm, one of my Favorite Things from the past.
And their food is amazing. We opted not to have any starters (as amazing as they sounded), because we wanted to save room for dessert. So we went straight to the entrees.
Their specials sounded so appealing (including lobster mac 'n cheese with black truffle oil, pan seared scallops served with lobster risotto and wilted arugula, and pork tenderloin with butternut squash risotto, wilted arugula, and peas finished with a lavender honey sauce), but I just can't turn down duck when I go out to eat. And I was not disappointed.
Mr. Kim Chee had the Steak Au Poivre. It was a gorgeous New York strip steak, crusted in peppercorns, served medium-rare, and topped with a rich sauce made of cognac, cream, and Bourdelaise sauce. His meal had steamed vegetables, too, and the surprise of two starches--the butternut squash puree as well as a mound of garlicky potato puree, made with blue potatoes.
Our service was excellent (the person who recommended The Restaurant to us mentioned their incredibly friendly staff, and she was not kidding!) and the food even better. Very rarely do we have the time for a leisurely meal, but we spent nearly two hours at The Restaurant, sipping wine and very locally microbrewed beer (which unfortunately we forgot the name of. Sorry, nameless stout...) The only thing that made us leave was the fact that our movie was about to start.
I would go back there in a heartbeat. The service, the ambiance, and the food together combined to make the perfect evening. Food was reasonably priced and there was plenty of it (did I mention that I have an entire duck breast left to nibble on tomorrow?)
If you're ever in the Rochester area and looking for a high-quality meal with an intimate atmosphere, I recommend giving The Restaurant a try! You will not regret it.