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L'Etoile or Harvest?

Where are you eating and what do you think? What's opening, closing, succeeding, failing?

Postby kylcrowe » Wed Aug 09, 2006 12:31 am

yeah...so i wrote before that i hadn't tried harvest, but now i have. i checked it out and had a hard time even finding too much on the menu that looked good to order. two things impressed- the server (i think his name was tom) and the amuse (corn chowder with a kick). nothing else that my group had was remarkable.

just to contrast i have a reservation at L'Etoile later this week. i'll try to report back.

as for lombardinos...i'm a fan. i do have to try morels too; been meaning to for a while.
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Postby sitnspin » Fri Aug 25, 2006 9:53 am

I dined at L'etoile last night on a whim -- It was divine! Champagne cocktails (w/ cognac in it, mmmm!), chantrelle and shitaki filled crepes, pepita encrusted halibut, and 12 year old cheddar for dessert (and another champagne cocktail)... The mushroom crepes were the highlight of the night, maybe the best food I've eaten out all year. Amazing, unpretentious experience. Go there.
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Postby TAsunder » Fri Aug 25, 2006 10:15 am

I was just looking at that mushroom pancake dish and thinking how good it sounds. Along with the doughnut dessert and bread soup.
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Postby sitnspin » Mon Aug 28, 2006 3:13 pm

TAsunder wrote:I was just looking at that mushroom pancake dish and thinking how good it sounds. Along with the doughnut dessert and bread soup.

It was great, I'm still hungry for it and will have to go back before they change the menu.
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i finally got back.....

Postby kylcrowe » Thu Aug 31, 2006 6:49 pm

Soooo I finally returned to L'Etoile and four thumbs up to this restaurant!! FOOD A+.....SERVICE A+......VIEW FROM THE 2ND STORY WINDOW OVERLOOKING THE CAPITOL BY NIGHT......PRICELESS.
I went with my husband and another couple and we all tried different menu items. First courses were all spot on from the exquisitely executed local, grass-fed beef carpaccio to the wonderfully eclectic Tuscan style bread soup with so many local ingredients I couldn't keep track. Fortunately my server noticed me taking notes and offered me the menu to take home so I can visit all these wonderful farmer's stands on Sat. morning! I LOVED everything!!! My favs would have to be the fennel pollen crusted halibut and the cinnamon smoked pheasant (which I hadn't tried before- try it, pheasant's yummy!). The waiter matched a fantastic Cotes du Rhone that brought out the great earthiness in the pheasant, sage polenta and glorious array of local mushrooms....unbelievable flavor!
We opted to do a complete cheese tasting in lieu of desserts, which proved to be phenomenal....and made me feel a little "French".
All in all the evening was superb! I will refrain from droning on incessantly, because I certainly could.......I just have to say that this restaurant is like NO OTHER.....it's the food, it's the service, it's the philosophy, it's the REAL DEAL in a time when restaurants like to make trendy claims about local food and sustainability. (see last month's Gourmet Magazine for an interesting article on this topic)
It looks like L'Etoile is REALLY walking it's talk, but best of all the food is UNPARALLELED.
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Postby liam » Fri Sep 01, 2006 11:40 pm

cubanat wrote:Buckyor from Maine: have you been to PRIMO inbetween Camden and Rockland(I think). It is A-frickin-mazing

My wife and I ate there last week. It was one of our best meals of the year.
I posted on eGullet http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=35391&view=findpost&p=1259073 about Primo http://www.primorestaurant.com/home.cfm. There's nothing like it here in Madison.
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Postby cubanat » Wed Sep 06, 2006 10:55 am

liam wrote:
cubanat wrote:Buckyor from Maine: have you been to PRIMO inbetween Camden and Rockland(I think). It is A-frickin-mazing

My wife and I ate there last week. It was one of our best meals of the year.
I posted on eGullet http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=35391&view=findpost&p=1259073 about Primo http://www.primorestaurant.com/home.cfm. There's nothing like it here in Madison.


I just got back from NYC and ate at Pearls to get my fix of lobster rolls and oysters and it was grand. It didn't come even close to making me as happy as when I ate at Primo. Your review on egullet was awesome BUT it made me sad that I didn't go this year. I've been to Primo three times in the last 5 years( would of been 4 but we couldn't get in the first time). From the garden that they keep to servers/bartenders, they just do it right. It is one of my top 5 restos for sure in this country. Thanks for the link.
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Postby ewok69 » Fri Mar 23, 2007 6:48 pm

Hey kid,

How do you suppose that you would 'save money by going to Charlie Trotter's? If you can even get a reservation?

Monzie wrote:
small cheese wrote:Both restaurants keep their menus updated online - check both out every week or so and go when either menu grabs your attention.


Actually, I've ben keeping an eye on the Harvest online menu and I don't think it has changed in a while. The "Spring Vegetable Ragout" has definitely topped their entree list for over a month now.

I dunno. Maybe we should just skip both restaurants, save our money, and go to Charlie Trotter's instead! :D
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Postby Wino » Sat Mar 24, 2007 3:56 pm

ewok69 wrote:Hey kid,

How do you suppose that you would 'save money by going to Charlie Trotter's? If you can even get a reservation?



Any yahoo can get a reservation at Trotters, for a future date that is.

They weren't trying to save money "by going to" Trotter's. They were going to save their money "and then" go to Trotter's.

On the other hand, I'd recommend they go to Tru instead.
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Postby UW-Madison » Sat Mar 24, 2007 7:44 pm

so how bout that Med Cafe?
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Postby Monzie » Mon Mar 26, 2007 11:47 am

ewok69 wrote:Hey kid,

How do you suppose that you would 'save money by going to Charlie Trotter's? If you can even get a reservation?



Wino is entirely correct. We don't intend on saving a bundle by going to Trotter's. I meant that we'd save the money we would have otherwise spent on dinner at Harvest or L'Etoile (plus a few extra quarters for the Illinois tolls) and use it to buy a superior (??) dinner in Chicago. Sheesh. I may be a 38 year old "kid," but I'm not a complete eejit!

And I dunno what the heck UW_Madison is talking about, but go get your own thread, buddy!
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