Posted on | March 4, 2007 | 5 Comments |
Yeah, first time I heard about this place, I was surprised too, there are a lot of Asian-French fusion places around here, but it was the first time that I ever came across a specific Korean fusion. But I was intrigued, did a little research, and came across some pretty encouraging reviews.. So when I heard that Suneeta had selected Coupage as Sudhakar’s birthday dinner venue, I was very excited…(okay, I subtly suggested the place to her in the first place ), but nonetheless thanks to her for picking this place from all the choices out there. It was a fantastic choice… Food was out of this world!
Well, food was great, but from what I heard, the service was not so. Siv & I were almost an hour late in joining the birthday party, so this is all hearsay… First of all, the reservation was for 13, but they had set up two separate 6 person tables! Anyway after we complained, they put both the tables together. Another glitch was the fact that the restaurant management called Suneeta about three times to try to convince her to go with the family style dinner option (I’m assuming it is similar to the Bucca-De-Beppo experience, where there are 4 or 5 dishes to be shared among the whole table). But the whole point in picking Coupage in the first place was because of all the great choices in their regular menu. So she didn’t give in to that request. But upon arrival at the restaurant, they kept insisting that we take our time in ordering and not overwhelm the chef! That is the weirdest request I’ve ever heard! But the place is new, they are still learning the trade, so let’s just let that one go, huh? Also, they didn’t serve any bread, after these guys ordered their appetizers, they had to sit and wait for 45 minutes without any bread!
But coming back to food, wow, amazing! I think most everything we had was great! Between 11 of us on the table we ordered all the entrees. Here is the run down on the dishes as I remember.
Warm Vichyssoise – Crab cake with sweet mustard brulee, hint of lemongrass and chinese celery pesto .
At $14 for a single crab cake, this better be good. And it was! This is two dishes in one. The Vichyssoise with the splash of celery pesto was just so good on its own, and the crab cake was delicious, the combination was divine! One of the best I’ve ever had. With this dish, I really hope they had served some bread to wipe off the soup with!
This is exactly how I found it; half-eaten by the time we got there. This came with Korean style hanger steak and braised boneless short ribs. And those big black things are stones, many a drunkard tried to cut it with a knife, and poke it with a fork; it does look delicious doesn’t it? The beef was too good, so well seasoned and cooked to perfection, so soft. It came with some dipping sauces which we dutifully abandoned.
I had heard so much about their burger, the Coupage burger is going for $28, the most expensive burger I’ve ever seen. We had to try it, so Siv and I decided to split a burger. And boy weren’t we glad we did! The burger was scrumptious, fresh house ground short rib seasoned and grilled, served with seared foie gras, red onion kimchi and tomato confit! Wow, all these different flavors just blend together so well, foie gras and kimchi -classic examples for the two cuisines – who would have thought? And the side of truffle perfumed potato chips was just amazing! The potatoes were cut so thin, and fried in truffle infused oil I assume, they could just sell that as an appetizer on its own. The burger was worth every penny! If you try just one dish here, I’d say go for this one.
Siv and I shared this one too. May be because I had it after the burger, I really didn’t care for this one. It was exactly what they described it to be, the top fatty layer was grilled to the perfect crispiness, and was served on a bed of asian lentil pilaf with a splash of schezuan peppercorn jus. But Siv really loved this dish, I have a tendency to miss some flavors after I am really full, so may be that was just it…
Some pictures of the dishes that the rest of the table ordered. I tasted some of these and these were all so good. I didn’t taste the lamb chops, but I heard they were just so-so.
The dessert selection was not all that great! Nothing inventive. The best they could come up with to make it sound like they tried blending the cuisines were black peppered rice pudding and some chili ice-cream! The chili ice cream is served with the chocolate soufflé, which they ran out of, so that must be good. The black peppered rice pudding -even though I totally missed the point of the sprinkling pepper on rice pudding- was delicious ,the combination of the rice and the citrus flavors of the cumquats and grapefruit really worked. I loved the crème brulee too. The cheese cake was described as too goat-cheesy. All the desserts were good, but it is obvious that they didn’t apply half of the imagination that they put into the food to come up with a nice selection of desserts.
The restaurant was a little cramped; the tables were too close together. I almost fell into my neighbor’s lap trying to take a picture, and Deepak made a friend for life from the table behind him. The decor was nice, the service was so-so. The waiter appears on the table only if we called him. But all together, it was a great night. Great food and awesome company! Here is the gang:
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