This has been a favorite restaurant of my Bride and me for years, and they tout themselves as “Where East Meets West.” This cinder block façade building, while bland on the exterior has a great interior, but even better than that, has great food, and a wine list that is approachable and affordable, as they fine tune it constantly, to pair with their menu. The owners are from New York, and they have brought that respect to a restaurant to their establishment in Madison Heights. There is a bit of whimsy and sophistication to the venue. They offer table side preparations for some dishes, and there are evenings where one can listen to live music, as there is also a baby grand piano on the premises in the center of the restaurant. The couple we met there the other night has lived one city over from Boodles for ages, and did not even know of this restaurant.
We started off with cocktails, as we studied the menu and the wine list, and one also has to look at one of the several chalkboards to see the special dishes for the evening, as well as some of the special wines that are being offered. We started off with a salad, except for my Bride who tried a Thai flavored soup that was being offered. The two ladies both ordered broiled Whitefish, while my buddy ordered a filet, and I took advantage of one of the specials of the evening an offering of “crispy Duck Confit.” I also have to mention that the one lady has to be on a Gluten-free diet and this did not cause any problem from our waiter or in the kitchen. In fact, I noticed that several of the dishes on the menu, even indicated Gluten-free in the descriptions. We finished off the evening with orders of Bananas Foster, that was prepared tableside and the aroma was heavenly.
As I pondered the wine list for the proper selection, I knew that my Buddy was not really a wine drinker, and since the two ladies were ordering Whitefish and I was having duck, I kept going back and forth on what I should select. There on the chalk board was a Pouilly-Fuisse 2011 from the noted Negociants Louis Jadot and that is what I chose. Pouilly-Fuisse is actually named for two adjoining villages in the Maconnais district of Burgundy. The Maconnais is located between the Beaujolais district and the Cote D’Or where all of the famed Burgundy wines are from. The varietal of this whole area for white wines is the Chardonnay. The terroir of the Pouilly-Fuisse district is very evident in the wine, which gives the wine a character all of its own, as the soil is dominated by chalk and limestone. While the wine is aged in French oak, due to the soil, there is crispness to the wine, which is different from the crispness of some Chardonnay wines that are aged in Stainless Steel. This is a Chardonnay wine that I would recommend, just so that one can discern the differences that one may encounter from a very popular grape varietal.