Monday, July 2, 2012

Saint-Jacques takes a step up

As regular readers know, I've been a fan of Raleigh's Saint-Jacques French Cuisine restaurant for quite some time now. The other night, a group of us went to check out its new summer menu, which featured some interesting dishes we'd not seen before.  I'm pleased to report that owner Lil Lacassagne and the chef team have added to their strengths in traditional French dishes a bit of welcome--and well-executed--new touches.

My steak tartare appetizer, for example, came topped with a single salt-heavy, thick, waffle-style chip that was a perfect complement to the meat.

Two of our group tried the tomato basil bread salad, which featured delicious heirloom tomato dices, garlic croutons, a dressing, and house-made mozzarella in what amounted to a chopped up bruschetta.

Most interesting was the Lobster and Scallop Duet, which in addition to being beautiful, as you can see here,

was an amazing combination of tender lobster and spicy scallops in a shell sitting on a salad of chilled lobster, strawberry chunks, and cucumber pasta. Lil said a friend's experimentation with lobster and strawberries had encouraged him to try the combination, and the result was certainly a win. 

Lil and his chefs didn't stray far from their French roots, and all the dishes clearly came in the French style, but the small experiments they tried were all both delicious and lovely.  I look forward to them continuing to expand their culinary range while maintaining their French roots.

If you haven't eaten at Saint-Jacques, you should.  If you have, go back and check out the summer menu.  

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