Last Monday, the hubs and I took the newest addition to the Richmond restaurant scene for a spin on my birthday. We were not disappointed.
The interior is cozy and softly lit. Relaxing jazz mixed with contemporary musics plays softly in the background. Exposed brick walls are covered with bold modern art in muted colors. Bistro chairs, white table cloths, and banquet seating complete the overall laid back, yet sophisticated vibe.
We started with the truffled cheese ravioli and arugula salad with goat cheese rostido (toast). The ravioli that came with a thick and cheesy bechamel sauce in a small cast iron staub casserole was addictive and could be eaten by itself as a meal with a side of salad. The arugula salad surprised and charmed my palate with hints of tarragon. I especially loved that the dressing actually enhanced the salad instead of drowning it (novel idea!), which happens more often than not these days in any given restaurant.
For the main course, hubs and I both got the peppercorn steak, but opted for different sides. I chose pommes frites and he the truffled mac and cheese. The frites were crisp and delicious, served in a parchment paper lined stainless cup. The mac and cheese used ditallini and a mixture of gruyere and a few other cheeses I couldn't quite place, was altogether pleasing. Our steak was cooked medium rare to perfection and melted like butter on the tongue, the peppercorn sauce coating it providing a fitting compliment.
For dessert, the hubs and I also both ordered the profiterole. Which is funny, because we always strive to order different things so that we can both sample a wide variety of what's on the menu. But this profiterole dessert called to us and we found out that it was for good reason! Wine soaked, spiced figs lined the outside of the plate. In the center, a single glorious cream puff stuff ed with vanilla bean ice cream hit with a hint of pernod, topped with a rich house made chocolate sauce. The combo of rich chocolate, vanilla, pernod(anise) and the spice of the figs literally made me food drunk. There really are no words, you must try this for yourself.
Bouchon is only now starting it's 7th week with us and I would love to see them stay. So, please go see them and enjoy the love and care they put into the whole experience!
PS- I've been seeing some blogging comments/tweets giving them a hard time about their name and I wanted to tell those folks that there is life and food outside of Thomas Keller. A bouchon is actually a TYPE of restaurant found in Lyon. Check it out here on Wikipedia.
PPS- I was also told by one of the owners, WendyKalif (her husband is the chef), that they are putting together a Bouchon Bar Bite Menu, just $4 an item as well as starting a prix fixe menu on weeknites from 5 -6 pm, $20 for 3 courses.
1209 E Cary St
Richmond, VA 23219-4146