Antonella Pomilla  reporting my third and final review. Typically, I am the person that DOES NOT dine at the same restaurant twice. However, since PLATES provided me with my best meal this past summer, I decided to check it out again for Fall HVRW ‘12.
I noticed in choosing my three restaurants to critique, all shared the same farm-to-table concept. With that said, these restaurants do not post menus since ingredients potentially change daily. I’m excited by the element of surprise, so my only stipulation for my guests is they must be not only open-minded, but also willing to eat. Additionally, since this is my sixth blog post in total for www.lohud.com , I never bring the same person twice. It’s particularly important for me to share these experiences with all varieties of palates. With my friends Marie Novelli and Maria Grimaldi in tow, we ventured out on the last night of restaurant week, Sunday November 18th.
For appetizers, we chose:
Spinach Beet Salad (Feta, Walnuts, Radish, and Honey Mustard Vinaigrette)
Goat Cheese Salad (Mixed Greens, Sour Cherries, Pears, and Apple Cider Vinaigrette)
Soup of the Day: Italian Minestrone
Unfortunately, the salads were mediocre, while the soup was lacking vegetables with a severe bacon-flavored broth. Having higher expectations for our entrees, we decided on:
Pappardelle Bolognese (Beef, Chicken, and Duck Ragu topped with Pine Nut Gremolata)
Grass-fed Beef Burger (Smoked Bacon, Cheddar Cheese with seasoned French Fries)
Buttermilk Fried Chicken (Mashed Potatoes, Biscuit, Coleslaw)
There were serious deficiencies with the Bolognese. Being used to the traditional version of browned meat, red sauce, and cream-base, the ragu was not thick enough for this type of flat noodle. The fat and oil slid right off the pasta, leaving most of the ragu on the bottom of the dish. Although the meats meshed well, the undertones of the seasoning were not clear. The Wild Boar Bolognese offered this summer was much more memorable; however, I managed to salvage this dish with lots of grated parmagiano.
On the other hand, my friends appreciated their dishes much more. Although the batter looked overdone on the fried chicken, the inside was juicy and flavorful. We found issue with the sides, as the mashed potatoes tasted like the box-version (and where was the gravy?), the coleslaw was some kind of mustard green instead, and the biscuit needed to be requested since it was originally left off the platter.
Regarding the burger, how can you really mess that up? Cooked medium, the beef quality clearly stood out and the fries complimented the dish as expected.
Lastly, only two dessert choices were offered. After asking the server if I could choose a third from the a la carte menu, he accommodated at no additional cost. As follows:
Banana and Strawberry Ice Cream Cake
PLATES Signature Ring Ding
Homemade Sugar Donuts served with caramel-drizzled ice cream
Overall, we ALL agreed that PLATES is a great place in Larchmont! Maybe because it was the last night of restaurant week? Maybe because I was spoiled by my two prior reviews this past week? Something was off, but I will not knock this eatery off my list. I think it just may be smarter to choose from the regular menu next time.
Thank you for the opportunity to allow me to participate in this year’s line-up. If you’ve enjoyed my reviews, please look for me on Yelp under member search: Antonella P.
Additionally, I’ll be featured in an article regarding Elite Yelpers in the upcoming January 2013 issue of Westchester Magazine. Keep an eye out for me!