TRUST the detailsEat This! Thursday, March 3rd, 2016
“Pierce”, sporting a loose V-neck sweater revealing his naturally smooth chest, smiled broadly when I arrived at TRUST. “Nice place,” he said after we were seated, obviously impressed.
As a rule I wait 90 days before reviewing a new restaurant because eateries come and go so quickly in the greater gayborhood. I made an exception however, for the highly anticipated TRUST located in Jonathan Segal’s latest concrete and glass building on the corner of Park Blvd. and Robinson Ave. The most recent collaboration of co-owners Chef Brad Wise and General Manager Steven Schwob, focuses on shareable plates inspired by seasonally available locally-sourced ingredients. Their attention to details details details really pays off.
“It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.” – John Wooden
The ultra-modern high-ceilinged space features an exposed HVAC system, eye-popping wall-sized graphics, a bright open kitchen, sleek white oak tables and chairs and gold barstools loitering around the white quartz communal bar. Brendan, our smart gregarious server, presented the cocktail menu – a clever “word search” puzzle on the cover, and walked us through the evening’s dinner selections.
We couldn’t wait to linger over Juan Sanchez’s craft cocktail concoctions. Pierce ordered the Rum Manhattan ($9) and I, the TRUST #2 ($9). The Rum Manhattan, garnished with brandied cherries, is a cockle-warming blend of 12-year old Diplomatico “Exclusiva” Rum, Carpano Antica Formula (a distinctly vanilla-flavored vermouth) and tart bitters. TRUST #2, a fiery full-throated blend of Jalapeño Tequila, Agave nectar and Firewater bitters, with fresh cucumber and grapefruit juice, really grabs your attention. Also recommended is the Penicillin ($9), an invigorating adult beverage made with Espolón Reposado Tequila, smoky Del Maguey Vida Mezcal, honey, ginger and lemon juice served with a cube of candied ginger.
Pierce and I sampled several excellently crafted and artfully presented plates, beginning with the Beet Salad ($9) and Beef Tartare ($13). The salad is a flavorful blend of mixed greens, heirloom beets, pink grapefruit, blood oranges, red Bermuda onion and slivered almonds tossed with citrus vinaigrette, housemade yoghurt and crunchy rye croutons. The Tartare is an exceptional medley of finely chopped premium beef, not-too-salty tonnato sauce (made with albacore tuna, capers and sherry vinaigrette), sweet pickled mustard seeds and robust Worcestershire vinaigrette, served on crisp lavash with two sunny-side up quail eggs. Three words: Dee. Lish. Us!
Next, we shared the East Coast Scallops ($17) and the Oxtail Raviolini ($18). The tender perfectly prepared scallops are served with pickled curried turnips, fresh mint and crunchy fried onion rings, atop velvety smooth cauliflower purée drizzled in lobster sauce. The bite-sized homemade ravioli stuffed with succulent braised oxtail, have a wonderful medium-firm chew and are served with pine nuts, diced carrots, shaved horseradish, whipped ricotta cheese and rich savory jus. A forkful of comfort in every bite.
Brendan tempted us with the dessert menu printed on an over-sized postcard complete with stamp and postmark (details details details). He recommended the Peanut Butter Captain Crunch Cheesecake with Berry Meringue, or the Oatmeal Raisin Tart, but we instead chose the Citrus Cake ($9). The slice of light sponge cake is served with firm buttermilk panna cotta, icy smoked vanilla granita and sweet orange curd. Just right.
TRUST opened their doors a few short weeks ago, but has already altered the culinary landscape in Hillcrest. Eat this, hungry readers. You’ll be glad you did.
3752 Park Blvd. Suite 105C
Brunch: Sat. – Sun. 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Dinner: Mon. – Sun. 5 p.m.-10 p.m.
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