Sunday, November 12, 2006

Em's Restaurant

Em's Restaurant
You know those restaurants where you have one favorite thing on the menu and you keep going back in the hope that you will discover a second item that is equally good? This has long been our relationship with Em's. Their goat cheese tamales are hands down one of my favorite treats EVER! On the entree menu at lunch, the tamales are served on a bed of black beans; at dinner they are an appetizer, served only with a drizzle of Chipotle con Crema. If I just stuck with the tamales at Em's then I'd never be disappointed. Unfortunately, curiosity always gets the best of me.

Goat Cheese Tamales, served on a bed of Chipotle con Crema - $7

Unwrapping these little husks is like opening a present. The gift is the delicious marriage of soft, sweet corn and tangy goat cheese.

Pan Seared Sea Scallops on a Bed of Asparagus - $10

J found the scallops to be cooked perfectly. Sesame seeds gave the dish an interesting Asian twist.

Smoked Salmon & Crab Rolls with Avocado, Sesame Seed Vinaigrette & Cilantro Oil - $8

These are pretty amazing—without being too rich.

Artichoke & Parmesan Ravioli with Pinenuts and Sage Brown Butter - $18

I like the use of artichoke, but the ravioli needed a life preserver for the pool of butter it was swimming in.

Ribeye with Bleu Cheese & Caramelized Onions, Roasted Potatoes & Seasonal Vegetables - $18

Overabundance of two things: fat and bleu cheese. J loves the flavor combination of bleu cheese and beef but they could have left most of the bleu cheese off and it would have been just right. As for the pile of fat that was left on the plate, it may be where the flavor comes from, but this cut was more fat than meat.

It's fair to say that Em's excels in two areas: appetizers and ambiance. Tucked away in Salt Lake City's historic Capitol Hill neighborhood, Em's is intimate but unpretentious; the perfect venue for sharing a meal with friends or loved ones. Our recommendation? Go for lunch, or just stick with the appetizers if going for dinner. Order the goat cheese tamales and you won't be disappointed.

- K

Em's Restaurant
271 North Center Street
Salt Lake City, UT


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