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December 12, 2009

Last friday night we went out to Araka, a Southern European restaurant, for their tasting menu.  The high ceilings and trendy décor made this a great choice for a Friday night meal.  I had only been here for drinks before and was pleased to see the place vibrant and alive at dinnertime.  I started out with the escargo with wild mushrooms, which was absolutely amazing.  The dish was rich and flavorful, and went great with the outstanding freshly-made (still warm from the oven!) homemade rolls that were brought to the table.  This was followed by chicken with gnocchi topped with a tomato sauce.  It might not sound too exciting, but the chicken was juicy and had a nice crispy skin.  The gnocchi were okay, but salvaged by the tomatoes and swiss chard they came with.  I also had some of the lemon sole with cauliflower puree that came with an apple, almond, currants salad with balsamic.  It was the prettiest dish at the table, and I just had to have a bite.  The meal was nicely finished off with a chocolate hazelnut bar with some raspberry sauce, which was the highlight of the meal for me.  The flavors worked together exceptionally well; the rich chocolate mousse and crispy crust complemented each other so perfectly, I made sure to savor every single bite, making this a dessert I will not soon forget.

Araka on Urbanspoon

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