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Restaurant Sat Jun 13 2009
Last week, my husband and I went to the May Street Market to take advantage of the Yelp Eats' prix fixe menu--a three-course meal for $25. As is often the case with these promos, we had to ask for the "Yelp menu," but our waiter was gracious when asked. The selection was intriguing: choosing one each from the two appetizers, four entrees and two desserts was a marginally agonizing affair though we did come out of it in one piece. I chose yellow corn veloute, smoked spring chicken and ice cream flight, my hubby fried green tomato, smoked scallops and cupcake flight.
They were all very tasty, but what stood out was the use of aromatics, unexpected and delightful. Almost every dish had a hidden perfumy surprise or two. My corn veloute (cream corn soup) was scented with orange rind, while the asparagus that came with the smoked chicken had sneaky bits of fresh mint that provided a nice contrast to the earthy, green sweetness of the asparagus. (I took mental note to steal that technique.) The refreshing mint paired surprisingly well with the meaty mushrooms (porcini?) in the same dish. Mint and mushrooms--who knew? My husband's smoked scallops sat on a bed of curried couscous, which, in itself, isn't anything new, but a little drizzle of orange-based sauce lifted the couscous to an aromatic heaven. Desserts didn't disappoint, either; my husband's cupcake flight included one that paired lavender cake with earl grey (I think) butter cream. Yum.
It was early on a Tuesday, so we shared the roomy "bistro" area with only a handful of other groups. Late afternoon sun cast a nice, warm glow on our table by the windows, while the bar sank in comforting semidarkness in the back. Toward the end of our meal, as the afternoon sun gave way to growing cloud cover, staff dimmed the lights and distributed votive candles. We watched the flickering dance of the tiny flame for a while after the meal, sipping coffee. It was a thoroughly relaxing evening with great food--we'll definitely be back.
If you missed the Yelp Eats, don't despair: May Street Market has practically extended the deal. $25 three-course dinner is available Monday through Wednesday for the time being (our waiter didn't know how long). According to him, these three days of the week will also be BYOB nights, meaning no cork fee for wines you bring in.
May Street Market
1132 W. Grand Avenue