Saturday, May 17, 2014

Liquid Art House

I looked at the menu at Liquid Art House, with all its foodie-stimulating words, and I wanted it. So, I made a reservation.

They also decorate the place with street art, much or all of which can be purchased - along with food and drink menus they also give you a menu of all the mostly $3-5K art pieces around the super cool building.

Even the restroom stalls are artsy.

Worried about the dress code, which is pronounced "smart casual" various places on the web, I finally just called them and asked, and a delightful young lady told me some people dress up but others wear shorts or anything they want. She told me they just want us to feel comfortable and to enjoy our night. Now that's what I like to hear. Cool.


Bay Village Buck - $12 - With Chopin Rye Vodka, Cucumber, Spearmint and Ginger: Well, it was really gingery. Eh, cocktails are almost always kind of disappointing. 
Nero's Fiddle - $16 - A Scottish-Italian hybrid bringing bitter to the smoke Islay and Highland single malts, Punt e Mes, Amara Bassano:   Light, smoky, slow nose burn, fun, but not $16 fun

They had three or four beers on tap, and I don't remember the others, but one of them was Yuengling, which I remember because I thought, good lord, who are they blowing to get into every single fucking place in Boston? Yuengling beer is not actually good, so why would they be one of three or four drafts at a new, swanky foodie joint? My real theory is that Yuengling has given every business who'll take it a free month or so worth of beer to get in the door.


They came around and offered three types of bread. I tried the LAH bread this time, which was just a sweet roll (not hot out of the oven); there was also an oatmeal stout roll and some other slice.


Sour Cherry Dumplings - 3 for $22, or 6 for $33 - With Foie Gras, Pine Nuts, Rose and Herbs: These were delicious, with lots of fun flavors, though the cherry business overwhelmed the rest a tad. The price tag is a little insane though. Each dumpling was $7.33. Consider.

Rohan Duck Confit - $17 - With medjool dates, urfa aioli, rocket, and queso azul de valdeon: This was truly good, my favorite dish of the night. Blue cheese, dates, duck confit and that fatty jam-ish dressing situation, whatever that was, damn.


Scallops - $35 - With gigante beans, young leeks, passion fruit, pork belly & cilantro: This dish was actually just plain not good. The scallops were over-cooked, the pork belly under-cooked, and the various components didn't blend well together. I almost always think entrees are a waste and that it's best to stick to appetizers, and that seems to be a good idea here.

These desserts all seemed so fun. It was really hard to choose. We finally decided on the Ricotta Cheesecake - $14 - With aerated manzano banana pudding, caramelized rice puff, passion fruit, banana crisps, and buckwheat ice cream. Interestingly, on the menu on their website, the prices for those desserts are listed, in order, as follows: $12, $7, $9, $8, and $12. Surprise, surprise when you get there, bam, all $14.
This was a large dessert, with lots going on, which was fun but maybe too much. It seemed like kind of a cluster fuck of fun things just thrown together cutely. Also there was too much grain with the crisp and the puffs. I didn't even taste the buckwheat-ness in the ice cream, which was the interesting selling point that decided us on that dessert and which came to us almost completely melted into a liquid. After trying this one I realized the dessert menu is like a game of how many fun what-the-fucks can we cram into one dessert description, which translates to, like, a bento box of dessert miscellany. 

Notice how most of the glowing reviews for this place are from food bloggers who were invited to pre-opening events, for many of whom the most important aspect of a restaurant is how cool the pictures you can take there are. You'll like this place is you don't care about spending lots of money, if you're into fun "cool" ambiances as your priority uno, if you don't mind super hovery waiters and like eight silver wear changes, and if you're more into reading a menu than eating truly delicious food. I'd rather go to Russell House or Hungry Mother or Myers + Chang and pay half the price for food that's at least as good without all the bull shit.

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