Thursday, September 9, 2010

Inaugural Post -- Normandie Cafe

Address: 1984 Murray Holladay Road, Holladay, Utah 84117. 801.277.5244.

Review: Hello all. The name's Marco. I'm a criminal defense attorney, food lover, and occasional cuisine instructor who recently moved to Salt Lake City, Utah. I noticed a dearth of good websites and blogs on the SLC food scene, so I figured I'd start one. And here goes.

Tonight we trolled the neighborhood and found the Normandie Cafe. The cafe is an attempted replication of neighborhood French cafes. We were drawn in by the "2 for $25" deal. The deal includes two soups or salads, two entrees (from a limited menu of about eight to ten items), and two desserts.

Firsts: I had the salad. It consisted of romaine lettuce, a creamy dressing, cherry tomatoes, cro├╗tons, and sliced red onions. Good. Certainly above average. My wife had the butternut squash soup. It was cream and squash puree based. Slightly light on the squash flavor, but smooth and nice. It was light enough to be refreshing on a late summer day. My son, who is two, enjoyed it heartily.

Entrees: I had the coconut encrusted Mahi Mahi served on a bed of lemon risotto. It also included a spear of sauteed asparagus and broccoli rabe. Mahi Mahi is a somewhat bland fish, and it could have been any other white, flaky fish. This said, the slightly sweet crust and lemony risotto worked well together. The asparagus, while nicely sauteed and still crunchy, didn't add much to the dish as a whole. Neither did the broccoli rabe, although it too was quite good on its own.

Desserts: We had the chocolate souffle and a berry sabayon. The souffle was soft and airy, as any good souffle should be. It was a bit light on the chocolate for my taste (although it was perfect for my wife, since she enjoys less rich food than I do), but the cream and vanilla bean sauce helped mask the missing chocolate. The other dessert was a cup of berries (blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries) coated with a vanilla sabayon. Very tasty, and exactly what you want after a substantial meal.

In sum, the food was enjoyable and good. The soup alone will make us frequenters, and the "2 for $25" sweetens the deal. Without this, the food may be a tad pricey for the quality, so take advantage of the special. (When I asked the cashier if the "2 for $25" was a permanent fixture, he said it previously wasn't but they have made it permanent because it brought in so much business.)

So, I guess I should standardize my rating system. Five seems to few, so I'll go with ten. Five is average (keep that in mind).

Rating: 7/10

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