Wasabi

>> Friday, July 15, 2011











June 17, 2011 http://www.wasabidetroit.com/ We have MANY guest stars this evening...which makes dinner so much fun. Tonight we have The Greek, Scarlet and me (of course), but also Mr. R again, and 6 new guests: Mr. S, Ms. F, Crazy Ms. T, Ms. J and two Ms. D's. This is the largest restaurant review we have done so far. Wasabi is a small place, and with our big group we are seated outside the backdoor. Their backdoor opens directly into the main lobby of the Park Shelton apartment building. I liked how we sat at patio tables with umbrellas as if outside, but instead we were in the open space of the (rather quiet and empty) lobby. Our server tonight is Daniel, and he is very sweet. We really give him a run for his money. The first thing you should know about Wasabi is if you enjoy any sort of mixed cocktail, good luck. They cannot make "complicated drinks" so I'm told when I ask about bar services during the reservation call. Come to find out, "complicated" means pretty much anything mixing two liquors together. Not that they don't necessarily have the ingredients, but they just do not understand what you may be ordering or how to make it. But that's ok, we were amused trying to explain what is in a cosmopolitan and with the confused look we get when ordering even a Jack & Coke. What we SHOULD have been sampling is the Korean liquor chum-churum. I kept trying to remember to order it all evening and it kept slipping my mind somehow. Perhaps I was distracted by the antics of Crazy Ms. T. I cannot even fully explain how she scared poor Daniel or how the rest of the kitchen staff had to come out to take a peek at the unbelievably massive cleavage spilling out of the tight short dress....whew!
Anyhoo...for apps we have edemame (yum), wasabi pork dumplings and veggie fried dumplings. All were good. The first batch of pork dumplings we had were awesome, so we ordered a second round, and these ones had such a wasabi kick a couple of us were in tears. My entire brain was hurting from it. Ok, Entrees: The Greek, Scarlet and I all share multiple sushi rolls of a variety I did not record, but just say that this is an excellent place to go for sushi. You will not be disappointed.
Ms. J had what she called a Tofu Steak, which now I'm not so sure which dish it was as there is more than one vegetarian tofu dish on the menu.  Anyway, she liked it.  Mr. R had the hot & spicy chicken and shrimp.  It was very spicy and the sauce was flavorful.  The first Ms. D had veggie fried rice, which she said was great.  2nd Ms. D and Ms. T both had the Kalbi - beef short rib in Korean BBQ sauce...really delicious.  I will have this if I return. Mr. S did not have an entree and was fine with the previously mentioned apps.
The average score of all ten of us was a 3.5.  I liked the atmosphere of our makeshift patio, the service was just fine and the food was decent.  

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No VI Chophouse

>> Wednesday, July 13, 2011

June 4, 2011
http://mattprenticerg.com/novichophouse.html 
I'm so behind in our blog...I will blame my recent trip to Alaska although it really is just my procrastination problem. 
The No VI Chophouse is our 2nd Matt Prentice Restaurant Group review.  We really love Coach Insignia.  Tonight we have Thad, Lulu, Scarlet & Me (of course).  Our server is Emily.  Our service was great.
We start with....tuna tartar....like we always do, we have gotten so predictable.  We like this one too, and I like how Emily takes the whole and portions out some for each of us.
Next, we have soups & salads:  Thad has his predictable caesar, whichh he says is average.   Scarlet has the crab bisque and says it has very good flavor and texture.  I have the spinach bacon salad, and it is ok...I think I was still wishing for the spinach salad from Opus One that was perfection for me.  Lulu has the wedge salad with a bacon sun-dried tomato spread.  She doesn't like it too much and says maybe it would have been better without the bacon (don't forget she is a vegetarian).  She also has the moral bisque which we all think is divine.  Oh, and Scarlet really loved the caraway/poppy seed bread basket. 

For entrees, Lulu has the garlic angel hair pasta.  It was a red pepper cream sauce.  It was rather bland, and we agreed that it would have been better with some garlic, crushed red pepper and parmesan.  Scarlet had duck (seared mapleleaf duck breast) for the first time and she liked it.  Thad and I both go with Emily's recommendation of the "Cowboy" bone-in ribeye.  This is a huge 18 ounce bone-in steak.  We again went with Emily's suggestion and had them Au Poivre.  This was an abolutely delicious piece of meat.  I do recommend it.  Thad acted like he couldn't taste any black pepper in the Au Poivre sauce, but it was potent.

Scarlet and I have dessert, Lemon Tart for her which was "good".  But I have what I thought was the most incredible version of strawberry shortcake.  The macerated strawberries were tossed with basil and there was a side of 25 year aged balsamic vinegar.  The flavors were bright and perfect. 

Ok, for the scoring...the AVERAGE score was about a 3.5.  But I MUST mention that it was pulled down by Lulu's score of a ONE.  She took the statement from the scoring system "won't return unless forced" very literally, although the comments behind the D's were meant more tongue-in-cheek.  Although, our service was flawless and friendly...and I personally cannot see rating any of the food below the pit of mediocrity or below average for that matter.  However, she stands firmly behind her opinion.  She is very hard to please.
I personally give No VI Chophouse a 4.  Not every dish was over-top excellent, but definitely some winners in the bunch.  Atmosphere, of course, pales in comparison to Coach Insignia, but most will.

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