Tuesday, August 13, 2013

On the road again: Austin, day 2

Interesting meetings with friends who are also clients--but, as usual, nothing I can talk about. 

Dinner took us to Searsucker, one of a small chain of restaurants from Brian Malarkey, a celebrity chef who most recently was one of the judges on the now-canceled TV show, The TasteThe menus looked promising, so I was hoping for some truly interesting food.

Searsucker didn't deliver that at all.  The most interesting, new-cuisine part of the meal was the text of the menu, which aped the style of the menu of a very good restaurant.  We sampled multiple starters, and all were tasty but no better.  None was particularly inventive.  Almost all of them were over-salted, sometimes to the point of feeling like they were burning your tongue. 

Malarkey himself was there, signing books and being a friendly celebrity to a large table of women dining together.  The design of the space was eclectic and fun, the DJ's music was too loud--yes, in the front space nearer the bar a DJ was playing remixes I found more sad than pleasant (do we really need a ruined, overly long, jazzed up remix of "Satisfaction"?)--and the energy was good. 

The food, though, couldn't keep up.  The dishes were indeed riffs on classics, hence Malarkey's labeling of them as "New American Classic cuisine," but they were simple, barely imaginative riffs. 

On the plus side, if Searsucker serves to pull Austin diners from the T.G.I. Fridays of the world and toward at least slightly more interesting dishes, then it will have done a good thing.

Unless something about it changes, however, I won't bother going back. 

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