One if by Land, Two if by Sea, and no more for me!

So I know restaurant week was a couple weeks ago (sorry for the delay in posting – I’ve been a bit preoccupied with some family stuff and traveling), but I have to post about this particular restaurant. I saw an opportunity to get in at One if by Land, Two if by Sea, and was so excited by this that I didn’t care if it was for 5:30pm on Sunday evening. Anyways, it was a school night, better to eat early anyways, right? Haha. I rang up Beth and she and Will were both on board. We’d heard such good things about this place, and the three course tasting menu starts at $78 a person (they increase from there), so we couldn’t wait to get a taste for $35 a person!

Before the sun had even gone down, we arrived at One if by Land, Two if by Sea. We walked in the through the bar, and were quite excited, loving the décor and the atmosphere. Then we were led upstairs, to where I presume all the restaurant week-ers were. We were seated and given a choice of focaccia or a warm roll to start. Meh. We got an amuse bouche of a Portobello soup with chives, which I quite enjoyed. We ordered wine, very reasonable prices if ordering by the glass: $8-$14.

The tasting menu was organized by starters, mains, and desserts, each with 3 options. As there were three people, we decided to each get something different, so we (I) could taste them all!! So smart.  Will started with the Roasted Butternut Squash Soup, which I quite liked at first. I liked the cinnamony flavor in my mouth, and the soup felt soft in my mouth. This being said, I’m not sure I could eat the whole bowl. I ordered the Heirloom Radish Salad, with wild arugula, Pecorino cheese and a citrus vinaigrette. Upon ordering, I was very excited for this dish, and upon consuming it, quite disappointed. The radish was good, not too spicy, but honestly, I think I could throw together a better salad with the same ingredients. I did like the texture of the popcorn they threw in! Beth ordered the Calamari a la Plancha, which, as I’m not sure if I’m allowed to eat, I let her do all the tasting. She felt it was just alright, the chickpeas were good, and it was a nice dish if you like olives, but that the calamari was just mediocre. She’d had better.

It was at this point in the meal that our excitement had waned. Will’s Grilled Bavette Steak was so nice – I loved it, wished I had ordered it. Beth’s Red Beet Risotto was good – I liked that it captured the flavor of the beet, and I liked the red color. This brings me to my fish. I ordered the Pan Roasted Red Snapper. It was served with roasted root vegetables, all of which were crunchy and undercooked, kalamata olives, which I hardly noticed, and preserved lemons and chevril, also not really noticeable. I will have to say the piece of fish was very nice – soft and flaky, the dish’s only redeeming quality. I have only once sent a dish back, and had the fish not been nice, I would have sent this back. Ugh, I was so disappointed.

Dessert! Not really my favorite part of the meal, I always prefer savory over sweet, but since it came with, I was happy to oblige them by eating it!!! Will ordered the Gianduja Mousse, which was a concoction of bananas, hazelnut, and had some foam-like consistency. Beth ordered the Crème Fraiche Panna Cotta, which for panna cotta was good – it was served with blood orange made to look like caviar. I ordered the cheesecake – while not the best cheesecake I’ve ever had, it was certainly the best dessert of the evening. It was very light, not too rich, but it was served with this weird foam – a cinnamon flavored foam. There was certainly too much of it, and was not tasty.

I don’t know where we heard the hype about this restaurant, and I don’t know if we came in expecting too much. I do think that if there is a place that has its cheapest tasting menu start at $78, that when you take a bite into at least one of your courses, you stop to savor the bite in your mouth, feeling the sensation all over. There was not a single bite of food here that lit up my taste buds. I think the décor was a bit cheesy, and cringed (while simultaneously loving it) when the pianist broke into “My Heart Will Go On”. Oh Titanic. Don’t waste your money at this restaurant. If you’re really dying to go, speak to me, as they gave us $30 gift cards each, for our next trip in (keep in mind that’s not even half of one tasting menu). Or, you can pay me $50 and I will cook you a better meal.

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