COMME ÇA DEBUTS ‘GASTROPUB MONDAYS’
It felt like a trip down memory lane once I was seated in the bar/lounge at Comme Ça’s ‘Gastropub Mondays’ which launched earlier this summer. Reminding me of my grad-school days spent carousing the dives and watering holes lining the cobblestone streets of Fell’s Point near Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, the live music of Glenn Nowak, Bobby Lee Parker and Rob Whited, collectively known as The Whispering Giants, in combination with the bar’s pub atmosphere offered a classic reminder of my favorite East Coast haunts.
The French brasserie’s menu, however, did not. Introducing a Parisian gastropub menu showcasing a number of specially created dishes that play on classic bar bites with a distinct French culinary twist, diners will find decadent ingredients like escargot, foie gras, lobster and bone marrow rather than the down and dirty bar food I encountered during my Fell’s Point days.
Comme Ça is serving up bar bites like Poutine, a hearty mix of duck fat fries drizzled with oxtail gravy and cheese curds, or Roasted Bone Marrow served alongside the rich gravy of Oxtail Jam. There’s also Foie Gras Sliders on a wine brioche bun, Charred Octopus bathing in a stewlike sauce of black truffle and tomato, and a Lobster Roll with vadouvan mayo, celery and big chunks of lobster. There was one ode to my bygone days as a Marylander, albeit much more sophisticated, Comme Ça’s very tasty Maryland Blue Crab Melt with Vermont cheddar cheese on toasted rye bread.
My palate generally never runs toward a fruit based dessert, but in the case of the French brasserie’s Lemon Tart with a lightly torched lavender marshmallow topping and white chocolate embedded in the crust masterfully accompanied by verbena mint ice cream, I couldn’t put my fork down. Also well received – and with nary a drizzle of chocolate to be found – was the Upsidedown Peach and Almond Tart perfectly paired with Basil Thai ice cream.
In closing, I leave you with a quote from Virginia Wolf aptly adorning Comme Ça’s ‘Gastropub Mondays’ menu: “One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.”
This entry was posted on Saturday, June 30th, 2012 at 12:32 am
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