Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Mairin's Table

Tucked away in a little corner of Northeast, is this little bistro that serves a "Morrocan/American cuisine". So ok, we were not going to expect a completely mono-authentic culinary experience here. But really, I'm okay with that.

We sat down and already the interior looked lush. Not too many tables, but I get the feeling that is on purpose so they can take the proper care with the food. Our waitress was incredibly knowledgeable about everything on the menu we asked about, and I settled on a Spanish wine made from a grape I had never tried before, Herencia Antica's Tempranillo. It was a pleasantly full red wine, similar in many ways to a Pinot Noir, though with a distinctly Spanish flair to it. Not sure I could describe it any other way.

We started with an appetizer of the hummus. I'm always intrigued by a place's expression of the simple hummus. This one I believe was a little lighter on the garlic than I usually get, but higher on the lemon, and still very refreshing and delightful. The pita comes warm, and the hummus is especially delicious on the tomatoes, I'm told by PiC.

Entree's are at the medium range, expect to pay $15-20. However, they are huge. It is completely reasonable to split the meal in half and it is plenty for both parties. There's a charge for splitting, but it is worth it.

We ordered a Tagine of Lamb with Figs. This had a perfectly balanced spiciness with the sweetness of the figs, and the color of both was so close if I wasn't paying attention I wouldn't know whether I was getting meat or fruit until I had bitten down. If the flavor is too spicy for you, you can add the buttermilk harissa which comes off to the side, but otherwise I'll admit I was at a loss as to what this would be used for and didn't feel it had much flavor.

Dessert was baklava made with almonds. Sometimes baklava can be overpowering. It was a not too sweet, incredibly light way to end our meal.

Other options for meals that they had here include Chicken Marsala, or Stroganoff. So you can bring the less adventurous here and still have an incredible meal.

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