Mother's Day/Birthday Celebration

To celebrate Mother's Day as well as my birthday, the family, the girlfriend and I went to Jeffrey's here in Austin for dinner last night. We'd done the fine dining rounds for previous birthday/holiday dinners, Uchi, Wink, Zoot, Fino, Vin Bistro, but never Jeffrey's. The 'crown jewel' as it has been called had yet to be experienced. Off we went.

Although parking was a little limited, the restaurant is in a lovely part of town, and has a very nice ambiance. I could nitpick the space and the service, but I'll focus on the food, which was, good, but not great.

To start, we were offered an amuse bouche of Chilled Avocado Puree with Smoked Salmon and Cucumber. Delicious. (If not for the appetizers/soups this would have been the highlight of the meal.)

We chose three appetizers to share: Crispy Oysters on Yucca Root Chips with Habanero Honey Aïoli, Smoked Foie Gras with Vanilla Poached Pear, Pistachio Slaw & Onion Marmalade, and Wagyu Beef Carpaccio with Balsamic Dijon Sauce & Baby Mushrooms. The appetizers were fabulous. Presentation was lovely, and portions were big enough to share amongst 5 people. My favorite was the Smoked Foie (and I'm not normally a huge foie fan,) that paired well with the poached pears and onion marmalade.

Next came the soups: Chilled White Asparagus Champagne Soup with Crab and English Pea with Wild Mushroom and Asiago Cheese. The best fine dining restaurant in Austin and the Pea Soup was the consensus best dish at the table, go figure.

Finally, for the entrees, we had: Prosciutto Wrapped Salmon, Seared Peppered Tuna, Wagyu Hanger Steak, Braised Short Ribs, and Duck & Shrimp. While nothing really stood out as horrible or was sent back or spit out, nothing jumped up and grabbed our interest as we shared entrees around the table.

Now Jeffrey's can be checked off the list, and all in all, it was a good dining experience. I've had better, but I wouldn't turn down a meal from there either. Good company, good food, great dinner. Thanks to mom, dad, Kate and Jaime.

Duck & Shrimp

Balsamic Braised Short Ribs


TexasDeb said...

The oysters were my favorite. I appreciated the plating and I also though the short ribs were outstanding, but as you point out, not anything less than you'd expect from a restaurant with so many awards and accolades.

What I did not expect, was to be left standing in the front for a full 8 minutes (and yes I timed it) after confirming our reservation and mentioning for the second time that this was a very special occasion for our party of 5.

I was not thrilled with our seating arrangement, but I will say I appreciated our wait staff. Once we did get seated, we were handsomely taken care of.

Overall? B+. Not a disappointment, but I wonder if Jeffrey's suffers from a false sense of distance from the rest of the Austin fine dining crowd that no longer exists?

Note to Jeffrey's: There are other equally outstanding places to eat now. Coast at your own risk.

Flapjacks said...

Have you ever made it out to Hudson's on the Bend? That is a 'crown jewel' as well. Somehow, I haven't made it to Jeffery's yet...