The Village Pub2967 Woodside Rd.,
Fri–Sun [11am–2pm] + [5–9pm]
My Michelin star excursion at The Village Pub began with a lemon blackberry bramble, brimming with tart lemon slices and locally sourced blackberry. Altough my drink was non-alcoholic, the massively impressive Village Pub bar boasts a full assortment of liquor and a wine list as thick as a Bible. The equally impressive dining area offers a prix fixe five-course meal with a choice of appetizer, entrée and dessert.
The first course demonstrated the restaurant's playful take on gourmet portioning, with a histerically miniature amuse bouche of a savory cannoli that could only be appropriately overshadowed by a gaggle of fresher-than-fresh dinner rolls. These of course, were accompanied by a locally churned pat of cultured butter and the cannoli was filled with a fresh local ricotta, tasting very similar to a clean blue cheese with squash blossom garnish.
My appetizer was seared ahi slices with a tangy coriander sauce. The sushi-grade tuna was perfectly pink in the center and delicately hidden beneath a floral assortment of vegetalia, including paper-thin slices of raddish, carrot, and pickled onion, along with a few edible flowers. There was also an appetizer du-jour referred to as a seafod boudin, which resembled a small slice of lobster and scallop thermidor, topped with beautiful baby black caviar and a cutesy little piece of charred pearl onion; swimming in a sea of velouté that reminded me of a lobster bisque minus the cream.
Unlike other fixed price eateries, The Village Pub was more than happy to make substituions so that I could order exactly what I wanted. My duck breast entrée was gorgeous, tenderly seared to a medium-rare and crusted with pistachio. My split-dinner service appeared to be a traditional 'surf & turf,' however what looks like scallops is actually confit eggplant and crudité with an eggplant purée, and my dinner was accompanied by a Mediterranean-inspired gravy and duck jus in adorable individual gravy boats, along with a steak knife that I wanted to take home to Mom.
For dessert, the peaches & ice cream were tucked underneath white chocolate slivers and cleverly-plated with daubs of berry purée that I thought were real berries! There was also an assortment of chewy decorative flowers that reminded me of guava paste and a marshmallow star. The fresh-baked Madeleine cookies were warm and buttery, and I was so full that I couldn't finish them. To my delight, The Village Pub sweetens the deal with impeccable dark chocolate raspberry bonbons. These house-made bonbons are so good, I swear they're worth the entire cost of the prix fixe meal.
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