Monday, March 7, 2011

Chez Joly - Portland Oregon

Before going to Portland for the weekend my father had done some research of where to go for dinner and came up with Chez Joly a French restaurant on the outskirts of the Pearl district.

It was in a typical north American brick downtown building, but when you went inside you would have sworn you were in a bistro in Paris, they had hit just the right atmosphere with out being tacky.

I am a great believer that you can judge a restaurant on the bread basket.  I was happy we got some very good fresh french bread and the traditional unsalted butter that always says France to me.

We had a glass of red wine while we perused the menu which was full of french standards and was split in to two parts, the house specialities and the seasonal specialities.  I really liked this as I think it is important to eat seasonally and we both ordered from that portion of the menu.

My father order the beet and goat cheese salad.  This is something I love also and often make so I was interested to see their version.

There were both gold and regular beets, walnuts and orange segments (I am definitely going to try that at home) over the top was a drizzle of balsamic reduction.  I did not get to try any but my father really enjoyed it.

I ordered the frizzee aux lardons salad another salad I like to make in the winter at home.

Frizzee aux lardons
This came with the addition of a poached egg and potatoes.  This was delicious tossed freshly with warm  bacon and potatoes and a light slightly peppery dressing.  I loved the addition of the poached egg which I had not done before.  This is a dish I would make for myself for a quick dinner when no one else is home.

For a main course my father had the duck.

Canard aux miel
 When I saw this arrive I was jealous I love duck and this looked very good.  Again sadly I did not taste any, but my father said it was good and finished every last bit. It was a cool evening and the lamb shanks with white beans were calling to me.

Souris aux d'agneau
I was not disappointed, the lamb was falling off the bone and the beans were soft and unctuous as only white beans can be.  Sprinkled on top was mixture of what appeared to be parsley and grated orange rind, which added a fresh citrus top note.

We passed on dessert as we had really had plenty to eat and after a espresso coffee walked back through downtown to our hotel.

I would recommend Chez Joly for a dinner out in Portland it was busy but not full and the prices were reasonable for quality as well as the quantity of food that we received.  All but one of the main dishes were under $20.00 all in all a good choice thanks Dad for the research.

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