Saturday, April 29, 2006

The Soul of Brownstone

On Friday a bunch of my friends and I decided to go try something new, and Fake Birthday Girl* suggested that we try Brownstone. I thought it would be nice to expand my blog entry even though my last Brownstone experience wasn't that good. So, here's the short version of a long story. The good: restaurant ambience, corn bread, and their lounge music; the bad: the rest of the food, which was pretty much the same as my first Brownstone experience. If nothing else, Brownstone is a consistant restaurant.

For dinner, we ordered the fried green tomato for appetizer. I ordered the special of the day which is a simple halibut dish and my boyfriend the dijon chicken. Within our group, Earth Goddess* ordered the St. Louis style BBQ ribs, and GG* ordered the roasted duck. The Obviously Gay Duo*, Bubble*, and FBG* sat on the other table, so I didn't get what they ordered. Anyways, on to the food. The presentation for the fried green tomato was pretty but tasted so-so. The breading for the friend green tomato was cornmeal based, so it had a good texture and crunch. However, the breading was so thick that it covers all the green tomato flavor. (Later Duo#1 told me that it wasn't green tomato season, which explained why the green tomato has no flavor) The crab topping was covered with red pepper remoulade sauce, which overpowered everything on the plate. There was some creme fraiche layered in between each of the ingredients, which brought some tartness to the dish. But the creme fraiche tartness was too heavy for the crab and the green tomato, so the balance of the dish was off too.

My halibut dish was prepared very simple, just pan seared with salt and pepper, along with garlic sauteed collard green and some sauteed shrimp. The halibut was good and fresh and the flavor combination works well too. In this case, I think, simple was better. The halibut, however, was cooked a little unevenly because the edge was tough and the middle was still a little bit on the raw side. The dijon chicken was pan seared with salt, pepper, and some dijon of course. The chicken was then smothered in gravy and mashed potato. The chicken would be good by itself, but the gravy was too heavy and covered up the flavor in the chicken. The roasted duck was covered with red wine sauce that was reduced with duck fat. The sauce was under seasoned and was heavy because of the duck fat. The only good dish on our table was the St. Louis style BBQ rib. But for $18, you can get more than ribs in Barley's Smokehouse or Hoggy's and theirs are equally delicious.

The overall rating for Brownstone was 2.75 out of 5 on my yummy scale. I would have given them a 2.5, but their corn bread was unbelivablely delicious. I seriously think the food in Brownstone was prepared ordinarily but charged exceptionally. The only thing that made up for the dinner Friday night was the music in the lounge area downstairs. It was EXCELLENT! I would go back to Brownstone just for their music alone, and maybe some cornbread too. Actually, lots of cornbread.

If the high gas price hasn't damaged your wallet enough and you just have extra money to burn on ordinary food, please go to 122 Main St. Columbus, OH 43215.

*NOTE: As usual, the name appeared in this blog entry has been genetically altered for privacy reasons.


Tim J. said...

I loved Brownstone when I was there, but they were pouring me glass after glass of free wine, so that may have affected my opinion somewhat.

GD#1 said...

I liked brownstone's food, however, the service was horrible. I do agree that the music in the lounge area was great, however, it really isn't large enough for me to consider it a bar area. For this reason I don't think that it is worth $5 to get in the door...but the music was great. As for the service, we made reservations for 8, and they sat us at two round tables with four at each table . The tables were side by side, but you just felt like it was two different groups. Our meals were all brought out at different times, and two people at my table didn't get the drinks that they ordered. I would rate them at 3 out of 5 because the food tasted good. Price and service are the Brownstone's downfall!

Anonymous said...

The wine selection was nice when we were there - hafta give kudos for their selections, atleast...