I’ve decided to post my various publications to this blog for my organization and your enjoyment.
Originally printed in the Scarlet and Black and online at http://www.thesandb.com/community/rewarding-relish.html
A meal at Relish, located at 834 Park St., is simultaneously steeped in local farm flavors and touches of fine dining.
The menu offers a variety of tantalizing choices, from excellent cuts of meat and fresh fish to sandwiches and other vegetarian options. Though Relish is admittedly one of the more expensive restaurants in town, it uses fantastically fresh and local ingredients and the meals are expertly cooked. Lunch provides many of the same options as dinner at a lower price, so definitely consider lunch as an option. It is tough to choose among the many enjoyable options at Relish, but some of the consistent favorites are the Relish Burger, the Chickpea Burger and the Kofta Kabob. Those looking for dessert should definitely check out the Chocolate Oblivion and Chef Kamal’s secret recipe homemade Baklava.
Relish is definitely a unique venue with a cozy feel. The homey setting is offset by touches of worldly influence, from the Mediterranean-inspired color scheme inside to the music and unique dishes that accompany one’s meal. Most of the tables are set to seat around four, with a good number of tables for two and a few tables set up for larger groups. There is a small patio section in front of Relish as well, which is ideal on a nice day.
To get an idea of the eating experience at Relish, I dropped in for lunch this past week. I started with a small house salad and a bowl of soup with bread. The salad came out first and certainly cemented Relish’s reputation for using local ingredients. Every bit of the salad was fresh and the tomatoes actually came out of the garden in back; that is about as local as food can get. The soup and bread were also superb. The soup du jour was a Cuban Black Bean soup. It was a great balance of spice and flavor, and felt quite substantial for a simple bowl of soup. The bread accompanying the soup was homemade and had great taste and texture.
After my rounds of appetizers, I began my main course: Relish’s Chickpea Burger with avocado spread, accompanied by a side of potato medallions. Quite honestly, this is among the best chickpea burgers I have ever tasted. It had excellent texture and benefited from a superb blend of spices that added flavor without overpowering the rest of the burger. The side of potato medallions was surprisingly outstanding; the potatoes had crispy skins and plenty of flavor and crunch that was a nice contrast to the burger. The burger was adorned with an avocado spread that melded superbly with the burger and the bun and added a delectable and subtle aftertaste as the spices from the burger faded. Factor in a phenomenal bun, fresh tomato, lettuce and onion, and a scrumptious side, and this burger is a winner.
Relish is ideal for smaller groups, but can easily accommodate a large group in the main dining room with enough notice. For those looking for an interesting, worldly meal with an infusion of local ingredients, Relish is exactly the place to be. The atmosphere lends itself to great meals and conversation, and the cooking is fantastic. Relish is ready to be relished!