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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Hibiscus - Dallas Restaurant Week 2014

I'm sorry I haven't been posting lately but I'm at my last quarter of school (before graduation!!) and it's totally kicking my butt! But I can't skip Dallas Restaurant Week! (Benefiting the North Texas Food Bank and Lena Pope Home.) This year I'm only doing 2. Partially to save money and I have no time, but also the list was quite uninspiring honestly... I've been to most of the places on the list already. I really wish they would add more new places.

Restaurant week is well underway, and my first stop is Hibiscus. They only participate for the first week so you have to book fast. I went for the first time in 2012 and had a good time, so I thought I'd take a different group there this time.

2927 N. Henderson Ave.
Dallas, Texas 75206
(214) 827-2927
Price: RW $35/person (not including tax+tip)

If you've been to Hibiscus or it's surrounding restaurants, you know that there's absolutely zero self parking whatsoever... Unless you want to be circling an area with terrible traffic and walk several blocks to your destination. It was raining Saturday (last time I went it was raining too.. is that a sign? haha) And I'm assuming it's because of the storm, the lights at the Henderson/75 intersection were all flashing red. Everything was backed up, and the valet to Hibiscus is probably one of the worst locations ever since it's right on the corner of the intersection. Business was crazy, as usual, and the valet was backed up too. We waited in the car, in line for a good 15-20 minutes, causing us and half the group to be late. The valet guys were trying their best. I felt bad for them...

Finally we made it in. There were a lot of people waiting in the front bar area. Our group was seated after we got there. I think they wanted the entire party there, but I told them several people were stuck in valet so they took us to our table. We were seated in the back room again, which is nice because it's not as loud. While waiting for the others, we were given the menu and our drink orders were taken.

Hibiscus does their menu differently than most other places. They offer the 3 courses but the appetizer, sides, and desserts are served family style and it's 1 order to every 2 people. Since we had a party of 12, we were able to get multiples of each. And everyone orders their own entrees.

We got 2 of each of the appetizers:
Perla Burrata (fig mostarda, radish, sourdough). 
This was my favorite. Sweet and creamy and crunchy! The burrata was very delicate, it's an Italian cheese made from mozzarella and cream. It spread well on the sourdough crackers. The fig was sweet and paired the burrata perfectly. I think I ate half of a plate myself!

Lamb Ribs (brown sugar-sherry glaze, smoked mustard). 
This looked delicious, and I don't even like lamb. I had to try some though. I could taste the gaminess which I didn't like, but it was pretty mild. But the crust on that rib was crispy and pretty amazing. The sauce and mustard was fantastic. I think this was the table's favorite.

Boston Bibb (citrus, chevre, candied cashews, avocado). 
I liked this for the freshness. It also paired really well with the burrata. But it was underwhelming. There wasn't any dressing which puzzled me. But the bibb lettuce was fresh and tender and the other elements went well with it.

We're off to a good start. I've enjoyed the appetizer round. While waiting for the entrees, I succumbed to peer pressure and ordered a cocktail. haha. Basil Gimlet (pearl cucumber, basil, lime) $10~ 
The waiter said it's normally made with vodka but I requested Hendrick's Gin (my fav). And he said he would make it sweeter for me. :) It was yummy. Very refreshing, and just sweet enough for me.

For the entree round, no one ordered the chicken option... booo. So no pictures. Sorry.

I got the Sea Scallops (corn pudding, saffron squash, chanterelles). 
I knew I wanted this one as soon as I saw their menu posted on their FB page. All the elements sounded fantastic. The plate was really pretty, but the portion size was quite small. But most scallop dishes tend to be this way. The scallops were seared and cooked perfectly. However, I did get a little bit of grit in one of them. The corn pudding was sweet and I liked the squash and chanterelles, I just wanted more of it. It was good, but not the best scallop dish I've had.

Tenderloin (marfa tomato, charred onion). 
The more popular choice around the table. I thought it was missing something when they served it. It looks so sad on the plate... no sauce and so small. I found it weird that it came with no sauce whatsoever. But the steak was tender and paired well with the tomato and onions. It was just eh in general.

For the sides, we had 3 choices, so we got 2 of each as well.

Bloomsdale Spinach. Garlicky, yummy. It was nice to get green veggies with the meal.

Potato Puree. Smooth and creamy, loved it. The orders got messed up and we were given a 3rd one of this and 1 less spinach. So we told the waiter and he brought us another spinach. Extra potato! Score! :)

Mac & Cheese. This was by far my favorite of the night. Creamy and spicy. I loved the crunch on top. It was super rich and I loved it. haha. We all wanted more! They had changed everything on the RW menu since the last time I was there except this dish, and 1 of the desserts. I'm glad they didn't change these!

Annnnd it's time for dessert. There were 2 options so we got 3 of each.
Warm Chocolate Tart (blackberry, orange, Marcona almonds). 
Sounded more interesting than it is. It was pretty but it's basically brownie in a tart shell. The tart itself was a bit dry. A scoop of ice cream or glass of milk was much needed. But I could really taste the orange infused in the tart. We actually had leftovers of these and no one cared to take it home..

Ice Box Pie (butterfinger, vanilla ice cream, oreo crust). 
Amazing. Another favorite of the night. I'm so happy this stayed on the menu from last time. We really should've just gotten 5 of these and 1 chocolate tart. haha. Who doesn't love butterfingers and oreo? Perfect amount of oreo crust to ice cream ratio. YUM!

It was a great dinner. I think everyone enjoyed the food. However, when we were finishing up dessert, we noticed there was an ant on one of the tart plates. Just climbing on an almond... haha. We showed the waiter and he was very apologetic and said he would tell the kitchen. But that was pretty much it. Nothing else was really done about it. We didn't make a big deal out of it either. It was a nice evening, and it was just an ant... not something grosser. haha. But hopefully they'll get that fixed or under control or whatever they need to do. For the most part, the waiter and assistant waiters were all good. Friendly and just attentive enough. Our bills were separated with no issues. I'd go back again for another restaurant week in the future.

**I also want to give a special shout-out to the valet. Somehow during the rain/traffic/running late at the beginning of the night. I had lost my valet ticket. We went to the valet stand after dinner and knew they were swamped. But no one was rude to us and they tried to help me look for my keys. However, sometimes they keep the keys inside the car, in which case... I think mine was in my car. So they radioed out to the guys to look for it. I kept apologizing and they were totally cool about it. They found it pretty quickly too, considering they had more than 300 cars that night! I totally appreciate their attitude and prompt service. They definitely deserved the big tip! :)

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1 comment:

  1. Finally a post! Nice one! Gutted I am not in US!