Restaurant Review Roundup
I’ve fallen behind in posting reviews of some of the restaurants we’ve tried in the past few months. Here are just a few of the highlights.
The BYOB sushi restaurant Bluefin has moved to a new location in the Northtowne Shopping Center in East Norriton. We had heard so many raves about this place, and tried several times to get a reservation at their older, smaller location, with no success. We tried our luck on a recent Saturday, and were able to be seated for dinner. I had never been in the old location, but the new dining room is very attractive, minimalist and modern. After sharing a dish of edamame, I felt we were already off to a poor start, as the soy beans were cold and unsalted. For dinner, I had shrimp shumai, spicy noodle soup and a lobster tempura roll, while Matt had two specialty rolls with tuna and other assorted fish. We were pleased, but I guess this is a case of having expectations too high, because neither of us were blown away by the food. I thought it was above average, but not the best I’ve ever had. I think I actually prefer Kabuki in King of Prussia.
Tashan is a new Indian restaurant from the owner of Tiffin. Instead of casual and takeout service, Munish Narula has created what he calls a modern Indian kitchen and lounge. There is a nice bar/lounge area and seating for almost 100 people in the dining room. As many restaurants are these days, the menu is served tapas style to share. There were four of us, and we able to try many traditional and Indian-influenced dishes, such as Malai kofta lollypops, Peshawari naan, tandoori shrimp and Kashmiri lamb shank. For dessert, we all loved the rose-scented ice cream. While Tiffin is a standby for great Indian food, Tashan is a destination for a fun night out.
Monsu was Matt’s pick for my birthday this year, and it was a great choice. A Sicilian restaurant, and the name is a Sicilian corruption of the French honorific “Monseigneur,” from the era when wealthy Sicilians hired French chefs to work in their homes. Did you know that Sicily, an island off the west coast of Italy, throughout history was occupied by Greeks, Persians, Tunisians and other republics of northern Africa. Because of this influence, much of the menu features spices you would not typically consider Italian, such as cinnamon, paprika, saffron and harissa. At Monsu, you can do a four-course tasting for $40, but we decided to order a la carte. I had crispy chick pea crepe with eggplant caponata and mozzarella cheese, followed by tagliatelle pasta with pancetta, brussel sprouts and truffle oil. Matt, who always seems to try something exotic, had escargot in orange hazelnut gremolata and braised goat, which was very tender after hours of slow roasting. Since it was my birthday, I had to have dessert: a light and tasty canolli with pistachio and mascarpone filling.
I’m full just thinking about all this food, but looking forward to where we go next!