We have been to Annisa a variety of times over the years and then there was a fire. Annisa closed and reopened and this is the first time we have been back. One of the things I love about the restaurant is there is something very elegant and modern. Not a place that is happening but a classic. Thoughtful preparation to the food and service. A really wonderful place. A small gem in the village.
We split everything. They brought over a pastry shell filled with chicken livers, currant and chopped scallions to start. One big bite. The crunch of the pastry with the smooth texture of the chicken livers and the little currants was a pretty amazing mouth explosion.
For the first course we started with barbecued squid. Tiny bodies of squid that had been barbecued and mixed together with thai basil and fresh peanuts sitting over a mixture of green and black beans. On the right was one panko deep fried large squid. Beautiful presentation.
The other dish was split was lightly fried stuffed zucchini blossoms. They were stuffed with chickpeas and cheese. The blossom was sitting over a mint chutney. I am not a huge mint person except on a rare occasion with the right thing. I didn't love the mint but the blossom was perfect.
For our main course we went with the duck and rabbit. Long island duck sliced and served over a brown herb sauce and chopped papaya. On the side was a rich duck soup with small pieces of duck and tiny vegetables. The other a duck rillette, pulled and shaped into a cylinder with thinly sliced daikon on top. I liked how they presented the duck three different ways. The rillette was a nice surprise.
The other main was the rabbit. Although the fish dishes sounded good but we decided to be a bit adventurous. Lightly crusted rabbit served with a light sauce and a variety of vegetables including carrots fava beans and turnips. This was really delicious. On the side was rabbit wrapped around ramps and a light japanese flavored curry.
Both the appetizers and the mains were good and certainly a lot of effort went into each one in terms of preparation and concept but honestly the best thing last night was the desserts. Beignets stuffed with pecan and salted butterscotch that came oozing out when you bit into the beignet. On the side was a Bourbon milk ice cream.
The other dessert was so incredible that if you had put an entire platter in front of me I might have been compelled to eat the entire thing. Poppy seed bread and butter pudding with Meyer lemon curd. Rich, delicious, lemony and just a huge wow.
After dinner was over we walked over to the Soho Club to see Chiddy Bang. Such a nice guy and the music speaks for itself. He even gave a shout out to Fred which was pretty cool. After a few songs, we walked home. 24 years…and counting.