Sunday, January 28, 2007



I wish I could say that Salt Lake City is full of lovely historic brownstones like the one that houses Martine. But Martine's historic structure is a sliver of East Coast charm plunked down in the Intermountain West, making dining at this beautiful restaurant even more special.

When ensconced in Martine's long, thin railroad flat rooms, we feel uniquely removed from life, obligations and the Jell-O culture which surrounds us on a daily basis. As we sip wine and feast on tapas we truly feel there is no place else we could--or should--be. With tall ceilings, cozy booths and white candles burning in glass votives, Martine is romantic--without trying too hard. And while Martine's interior is polished, and the menu interesting, the prices are surprisingly accessible. (A choice of entree with a tapa is just $28.) It's the perfect recipe for a carefree night out.

Pan Seared Calamari
Pan Seared Calimari with Pimenta Lime Jus and Black Beluga Lentils

I love lime and calamari, but this was a little on the drenched side. (Think sourpuss face when you take a bite.) I was hoping the lentils would have had a chance to stand out more.

Grilled Duck with Pear
Grilled Duck with Pear and Blue Cheese

This trio of flavors seemed to dance in J's mouth in perfect harmony.

Grilled Pheasant
Grilled Pheasant with Woodland Mushroom Ragout

A very rustic and earthy combination. Like slipping into a cozy, warm farmhouse on a cold winter's day.

Almond Crusted Black Cod
Almond Crusted Black Cod with Clementine Veloute and Preserved Lemon Risotto Cake

The cod was tender and the risotto was subtle. I think a few more mushrooms would have livened the quiet dish up a bit, but I still managed to cleaned my plate.

Morgan Valley Lamb
Balsamic Marinated Morgan Valley Lamb Sirloin with Bleu D'Auvergene Cream, Rosemary Roasted Fingerling Potatoes

J's favorite dish of the evening. Cooked perfectly, it was juicy and sumptuous. You just can't go wrong when marrying lamb and rosemary. We're glad to see the restaurant supporting local producers that are hormone free and practice sustainable agriculture.

Grilled Gingerbread
Grilled Gingerbread with Caramel and House Gelato - $7

This is quite possibly one of my favorite desserts. It is not overly rich, and provides just the right dose of sweet after a savory meal. The gelato seemed almost fluffy on this particular evening. Love it, love it, love it!

We did bring our own vino, but since Martine's wine markup is minimal, you can order a bottle off the menu and not feel like you've been had.

- K

22 East 100 South
Salt Lake City, UT 84111

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