Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Off Notes at La Sirène

It was too dark for cell-phone
pics. The wine was good.
The Yelp reviews were good and the menu looked interesting, so we decided to try out La Sirène. I’m going to note that it’s not the restaurant’s fault that it’s across the street from a construction site and somewhat out of the way, still, in choosing a restaurant, I tend to like a nicer neighborhood. Maybe things will improve when the construction site is no longer a big pit with fencing around it.

Since we were having dinner after theater in an area well off of Broadway, we were the last table. Two other tables were clearing out as we started. It’s always odd to be the last table in a restaurant. Odder if you’re the only patrons before you’ve finished your appetizers. Well, we didn’t have to contend with noise from other tables.

The appetizers were the off note. I ordered the duck paté; James ordered the octopus. Both came with a vast pile of salad greens. Those with the octopus were wilting, and not in a good way, from the heat of the octopus. The paté was largely hidden by the mountain of greens. It was not really up to snuff. If this is their house recipe, they might want to consider tinkering with it.

We both had the rabbit stew (which might better have been termed “stewed rabbit”) as our main course. That was delicious, though I kept finding I had to extricate tiny bits of bone from my mouth as I ate it. It came with a little tower of potato with a cherry tomato on top. On the side was a tray of four vegetables: pureed carrots, pureed cauliflower, green beans, and eggplant. They really didn’t work. The carrots were okay. The cauliflower was bland (resembling mashed potatoes in color and texture). The beans seemed a bit off. The eggplant was in a dead heat with the cauliflower for the dullest thing on the plate.

This was not a terrible meal, merely one that could have been so much more. Things were just a little tired.

We finished our meal with their take on the tarte tartin, which was light on the crust, heavily on the caramelized apples. That was nice, especially paired as it was with a Armagnac. Oddly enough, the waiter, a young man from the Nice region, didn’t try to upsell us to coffees. Maybe he just wanted to close the place and head on home.

Local Yelp reviewers may have given this place four stars, but I would resist the siren’s call.
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