January 26, 2011

Corner Table: 1 year, 9 months later

1 year and 9 months ago, I went to Corner Table for the second time. That same night Zach and I got engaged. :)

5 nights ago, I went to Corner Table for maybe the fifth or sixth time. And it was -15 degrees out, actual temperature.

But if there is any restaurant in town I’d want to go to during an arctic blast, it would be Corner Table. When I balked at being seated right next to the door, the hostess informed me that they had the heat turned up to 82 degrees. It was true. I think I actually saw steam on the windows. A welcome sight when it’s -15 below out, actual temperature.

The menu is small, but Corner Table is all about doing what they do well. They locally source; they make what’s in season. The menu changes all the time (and their website generally doesn’t keep up with said changes), so you need to go in feeling slightly adventurous.

But the food is always good.

There seemed to be something about the frigid temps that inspired the kitchen the other night. Our dinner was especially good.

Potato gnocchi with pumpkin and browned butter: The big chunks of sautéed pumpkin were delicious and a surprise basis the other pumpkin gnocchi executions I’ve had before. And the gnocchi themselves were the perfect vessel to use to sop up the browned butter. Note to self: browned butter twice in the same week is probably excessive. (Don't know what I'm talking about? Read "A Spontaneous Monday Night Baking Adventure" post.) 

Even better than the gnocchi though was the chicken and funnel cake others at our table had for their first course. Lightly fried mounds of chicken confit nestled with pieces of funnel cake. Funnel cake. All with a side of refreshingly tangy homemade coleslaw. It was unhealthy for sure. But it was delicious. And it was different (in a good way, of course).

For my main I had the blackened rib eye with crispy polenta and balsamic onions. Rib eye good. Balsamic onions a nice complement with their zippiness. The crispy polenta—the star of the dish. Imagine little cubes of perfectly salted pan-fried goodness, oozing with creamy polenta when bitten into. They were quite delicious.
For dessert we all had the carrot cake, although some of us split it and some of us did not. The folks at Corner Table should warn everyone to leave their carrot cake expectations at the door when ordering CT’s version. What came out was not 3 layers of moistness with visible carrots, raisins, and walnuts. Instead, what came out was a little rectangular piece of spice biscuit-ish cake, with an accompanying luxurious blob of cream cheese frosting. The most carrot-y part about the “carrot cake” was the carrot ribbon garnish that was along for the ride. I looked at it and immediately assumed I’d be disappointed. But I wasn’t! They knew better than I did, those folks at Corner Table, what I was truly hungry for. Not as obscene as the usual carrot cake, but still the same flavors somehow. Quite interesting. I’m still mentally processing this.

A few unconfirmed fun facts: I have heard (have not witnessed much to my dismay) that on Friday nights at 10pm the wait staff comes around with platters full of unique $1 sliders. This is genius if true. Have also heard they have a table in the kitchen that can be rented out for the night for a flat per-person fee. And with that comes unlimited plates of food that they slide across the table along with unlimited wine. It’s on my short list of things to do this year.

Corner Table is one of my favorite neighborhood spots in town. Great food, friendly wait staff, full of people cozied up next to each other at the small tables or at the small bar. Full of people who look like they’re regulars and look like they love good food too.

Corner Table on Urbanspoon

No comments:

Post a Comment