The Salt House

The Salt House was open last night for dinner.  Incredibly convenient to our hotel which was a bonus after spending too much time driving this past weekend.  I like the decor.  Reminded us all of a restaurant in Sydney.  The old wooden beamed tall ceilings, small intimate tables made of pounded old wood, an open modern kitchen  and great service.  There is a really nice vibe there. 

The food, although a tad heavy handed on salt, is quite good.  The menu is balanced and everything we ate had its own distinct flavor. 

Jessica and I started off with a simple mixture of salad greens tossed in a very light red wine vinaigrette and sprinkled with chunky sour dough croutons.  Josh went with the pig.  Cooked like every chef is making suckling pig these days.  Shaped in a thick rectangle of crispy skin on top and pulled pork underneath.  This sat on top of a lentil salad with little pieces of pork in it which was really delicious and had lots of flavor.  A real hit and innovative.  Emily had the parsnip soup that had three dollops of a green olive oil dipped on top and some chopped sage.  The soup was rich and creamy.  Delicious.  Fred had the ricotta, pear and walnut salad.  Also a winner.  A nice sized chunk of ricotta sitting on top of the salad with pears sliced through out.  Very good.

Can’t forget the big chunk of Acme bread that is put in the middle of the table on top of a brown piece of paper.  Nice simple communal touch.  Acme bread, which is located in the Farmers Market, is the Amy’s bread of NYC to San Francisco.  Really fresh and tasty.

Dinner was also a hit.  Josh and Fred had the chicken.  I really liked how they served the chicken.  A breast of chicken with the wing attached and the breast had already been sliced but layered back in so the breast was still in place.  Nice presentation.  The chicken sat on top of a mixture of roasted root vegetables, mushrooms, fingerling potatoes and little pieces of bacon.  A nice winter meal.  Jessica had the sole.  Two pieces of lightly cooked sole sitting over a celery root that was sliced, braised and pureed then it  had been flavored with lemon preserve.  It was light and delicious.  Emily went with the Wild Striped Bass that with a crispy skin over a mixture of red cabbage mixed with chorizo and root vegetables.  Another perfect winter dish.  Very tasty and rich.  I opted for the Portuguese Braised Calamari that was served with mussels and razor clams.  The mixture had been braised in a spicy red wine and poured over a chunk of polenta that got soft from the stew.  It was very salty and different.  I liked it but it is quite rich.  I really liked that each of the entrees were perfect for the season.  Each with different ingredients and different flavors but rich for a colder evening.

We were quite stuffed and passed on dessert although a few winners looked like they were coming out of the kitchen.  Thumbs up for the Salt House.  Nice vibe, good meal, nothing too fancy, just good food.