Bar Blanc, Bar Bland

Winter whites
Winter whites

I went to Bar Blanc the other week and felt it necessary to share with you the blandness and utter lack of excitement the meal presented us with. Although the stark white decor is wishing it was reminiscent of Philippe Stark’s Delano Hotel it certainly lacked the thrill of a mojito by the pool-side cabanas. Maybe it was because I went after Cesar Ramirez (ex of Bouley) departed; Sebastiaan Zijp (also ex of Bouley) has taken over the two-starred-by-Bruni menu. Or maybe it was because the food looked better than it tasted…

We sat at the white bar (meheheh) for a refreshing glass of Sauvignon Blanc off their Euro-centric wine list and munched on warm and delicious roasted walnuts rolled in honey and spices before sitting in the small but stylish main dining area. About 5 minutes after ordering our apps and entrees, the crispy sweetbread salad with sherry poached cherries, watercress and a lemon vinaigrette came to our table. Fast? yes. Too fast? Fo sho. The dish was great but not inventive. The sweetbreads were, as usual, buttery on the inside and crispy on the outside and the cherries and lemon vinaigrette lent that nice touch of acidity one needs when eating a fattier dish.

Soon after we completed dish one, our first entree appeard (and rather quickly at that. trend here? yes). The Seared Black Cod with Wilted Arrowleaf Spinach, Celery Root, Fennel and Saffron Sauce was certainly tasty but I can hardly remember why. I know that Black Cod is indeed a delicious treat as is celery root and saffron but felt nothing of the composed dish. Not that it was bad, but perhaps a little bland. Tant pis!

Before we could finish the cod, the lovely Slow Roasted Pork Loin with House Made Sauerkraut-Braised Pork Shoulder Terrine and Grainy Mustard Sauce was delivered to our table. Sure, it was good, as a pork/sauerkraut combo always is but certainly not amazing enough to warrant the $32 price tag. Again, each element was well executed but the composed dish wanted to be something more.

Needless to say we skipped dessert and agreed that the bar nuts were the best nibble we’ve had all night. Looks like white is not the new gray (b/c gray is the new black, mmmkay?)

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