Mike and I have been to Prune before, but only for (a marvelous) brunch. Prune was so marvelous, in fact, that it ranked in at number 10 of the Top 10 Noms of 2012. We vowed to come back for dinner, and nearly a year later, we finally did.
I thought they didn’t accept reservations, but as it turns out, that applies to brunch only. So we walked in around 6pm on a Saturday and they were pretty full, but the hostess said it would be about 30 minutes as long as we didn’t mind eating at the bar and she took my cell phone number. 20 minutes later, she called and to the bar we went.
We started with Duck Liver Garbure with Toasted Chestnut. She told us it came with brussels sprout leaves and in a duck broth. It was served with a spoon. There was no mistaking this liver for an organ. Liver, for some reason, is usually disguised. Either made into pate or in a darkened mass that is remiss of it’s organy folds. Not this one. And it tasted as organy as it looked. Though for us, that is a good thing. Though we had a very tough time not comparing it to the amazing liver we had just a few weeks ago at Local 188 in Portland, ME.
But I just loved the chestnuts in here. Chestnuts are one of my favorite foods and here they were used perfectly. They added a really nice flavor to it and paired well with the liver taste.
For entrees we split the lamb chop and the crispy duck.
The lamb was a Grilled Lamb Blade Chop with Turkish Piyaz. I had no idea what piyaz was, but it was served with parsley and onions. I looked up piyaz and it appears to be a bean salad… which I didn’t see. But that didn’t make it any less awesome. The lamb was super lamby without being too overpowering and the parsley and onion were a nice compliment to the lamb.
The crispy duck was something we had seen with other diners and when it looks THIS crispy, how can you not order it?
This was just pure, unadulterated ducky goodness. That crispy skin was very good. (There are few things in this world I like more, or crave more, than the extra crispy skin of various fowl).
For a side, we ordered the sweet potatoes with brown butter sauce with brown sugar vinaigrette. It was served as baked sweet potato pieces (baked up perfectly so they were soft without being mushy) and they put crisped potato skins on top of a lovely mound of (not too sweet) brown butter. This was actually our favorite dish of the night. An incredibly side… and next to such incredibly entrees, it is impressive that it was THAT impressive to us!
By the end of the meal, I had duck and lamb on every corner of my face and hands. Because it seemed just wrong to leave a single piece of meat on these bones. I unabashedly picked each and every one up and sucked every morsel off I could get. No shame.
For dessert, Mike went with the espresso gelato “affogato” in cold maple syrup. A quick google search tells me that “affogato” translates to “drowned” in Italian. And that this was. The maple syrup was a great foil of sweetness for the rich espresso gelato.
I chose the Breton Butter Cake which our waitress/bartender (who kept us well fed, lubricated, and entertained throughout the night) informed us was the chef’s special famous dessert. Well okay then! It is served with moscato (though I opted for the full 2 oz. pour) and is a flakey, gooey, delicious butter cake sprinkled with powdered sugar. How a butter cake can taste that good and not be the slightest bit greasy, I do not know, but it was incredibly tasty and went incredibly well with the moscato. I can see why it’s so famous.
There is not much more to say. This was simply an incredibly meal. I just love this restaurant. I am sure I am slightly swayed by my love for the owner’s (Gabrielle Hamilton) book, Blood, Bones, and Butter, which is one of the best food books I’ve ever read. But Mike has never read it and he has the same fondness I do. We both left there saying that we had enjoyed our meal very, very much. There is just an absolute love for food at Prune which comes out without flash or opulence, but is just plain delicious. Hard to beat.
Total Nom Points: 8.5 out of 10