Saturday, April 16, 2011

Review: Seasons 52

I stumbled upon Seasons 52 while out and about with Primo. We had met up for a quick lunch date elsewhere and we weren't quite ready for things to come to an end, so we popped our heads in for an after lunch drink. We sat at the bar, which was intimate without being too dark. It was well lit, not overly loud, and the grand piano that sat in the middle of the actual bar (complete with the old school large brandy glass tip jar). The restaurant is beautiful and it made me feel so grown up and chic!

I ordered the Hawaiian Pineapple Cosmopolitan (Van Gogh Pineapple Vodka and Patron Citronge) with a couple of mini indulgence desserts. He ordered a mini indulgence to go with a Riesling selected from their award winning wine menu. Our server, Allen, was top notch. He was the right kind of friendly without being too intrusive. Allen was extremely knowledgeable about their menu and offered wonderful suggestions for us. We had such a good time that we made a follow-up lunch date to actually dine in the main dining area. We wanted to sit with Allen again, but he had let us know he would be on the patio and since I had Tesla, it would be so much easier if we sat in the main dining area in a booth. Doesn't that look so inviting?
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Fast forward a couple of days and we found ourselves back at Seasons 52. The concept is simple. It is fresh, healthy food based on the seasons of the year with an extensive wine menu. "Casually sophisticated" the menu  changes every 3 months based on the season, with the chef's menu (to the side) changing every Tuesday. Everything on the menu is less than 475 calories.
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We pulled into the valet line and were immediately met with a very sour and scornful attendant. He passively informed us that we'd pulled-in incorrectly, while staring at the growing line of cars that began to accumulate behind us. How was I to know, and what right did he have to get so upset with us? It wasn't like there was a sign stating otherwise and he did admit that the cones originally blocking the way had to be removed because they were so busy. Seriously, if you get so overwhelmed with your job that your are going to act out negatively to your client, then maybe you should consider another career. Just saying. Anyway, I brushed it off, not wanting it to ruin our experience.

We walked in and were immediately greeted by the the warm and friendly hostess crew. They oohed and aaahed over Tesla and showed us to our booth. We got comfortable and within seconds were greeted by our server Matthew. He was friendly and enthusiastic about his job, but didn't really offer up any insight into the menu. He said everything was delicious. While you can say that, you should really have a favorite. And don't describe a wine as being fruity when it has pepper flavored essence. As a server, I would hope you knew your menu better than that. Random aside, sorry! Before I review the food, I want to let you know that I am only talking about my meal, with the exception of the bite of food I tasted from Primo's plate.

To start, I ordered a cup of their Buffalo Chili.
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At first glance, I noticed it had beans and I wasn't sure if chili was supposed to have beans in it or not, and then I realized I really didn't care. The buffalo was tender and completely blended with the spices in the chili. It had a small corn cake inside of it and a dollop of cilantro sour cream. It was very hearty and filling. Had I looked at the price, I would have just ordered a bowl of the soup and proceeded on to dessert. Not that price was really an issue, but for fifty cents more, I could've enjoyed the bowl.

Next up, was the Grilled Portobello Turkey Burger (which came with an organic mixed greens salad)
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It was served on a whole wheat bun, with a portobello mushroom atop a turkey patty, both of which were under melted mozzarella. If you look closely, you'll notice the shadow under the burger. Well, they elevated it higher on the plate. It looked pretty enough, but the plate was REALLY hot! The burger ended up cooling off  faster than I wanted it to and the salad which probably should've been cool was actually starting to get warm. To say that I was disappointed with this burger is being generous. The one thing I did like were the toasted sunflower seeds on the salad. Like I said, I should've just had a bowl of soup. The "burger" was like a frozen turkey patty. I'm used to those turkey burgers from Mooyah and let me tell you, those are DELICIOUS and flavorful. This tasted like a frozen mess that I could've heated up in the microwave. I'd say forget the cheese and spend more time making a complimentary condiment. The mustard that came with it was ok, but would've been better as a horseradish mustard. This entree lacked the flavor that I figured it would have based on the vibrant colors of the dish.

Primo had the chicken entree (Fieldale Farms All-Natural Chicken Citron), served with broccoli and yellow beets. I'd never had yellow beets before and they tasted like beets, which I like. The broccoli was overcooked and the chicken, ugh. It was too chewy, and flat out overcooked (burned, you know where it isn't crispy, but just hard, chewy chicken). I've had microwave chicken that was far better, unfortunately. I have to pause and say that they took off the chicken from the bill, which was really nice. We didn't ask them to do it, but our server immediately took care of it when he saw so much of it remaining on the plate.

Finally, it was time for dessert. I ordered the Meyer Lemon Pound Cake mini indulgence.
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I'm still on a lemon kick and boy did this hit the spot. Yowza! I actually liked it better than the Mocha Macchiato and as much as the Pecan Pie with Vanilla Mousse (pictured above).

Anyhow, all in all, I was unimpressed with their main entrees, but the rest of the meal was tolerable. I liked that I could go and indulge and not feel too guilty about it. I would definitely consider going back for an appetizer, dessert, and a fancy drink (albeit, one that I can only have a few sips of before getting too drunk...I'm out of practice!). At the first visit, I wanted to go here on a fancy date with Don, but instead, I think this is the place we would hit up at the end of the date instead of having it all there. Another thing to note, at immediate glance around the restaurant, it was filled with women dining on salads or older patrons. I don't think it was coincidence considering the menu and it being healthy conscious. So that's another thing, if you are on a diet or trying to dine out without all of the added calories, then this restaurant is for you!

**I was not paid or compensated for this review. This review is an honest account of my dining experience.**

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