Sunday, May 30, 2010

A Sublime Birthday dinner

After about 4-5 years of talking about it, I finally got a chance to check out Sublime Restaurant and Bar, located on Federal Hwy between Oakland Park Blvd and Sunrise Blvd. It's a vegetarian restaurant w/ vegan options as well.

I had been asked by my boyfriend David to pick a place to eat for my birthday dinner. I couldn't make a decision and considering how obsessed I am w/ food/eating (hence the creation of this blog w/ Lee) I was overwhelmed with choices. I started thinking locally and familiarly, is that a word? I thought, Cheesecake Factory, or maybe Grand Lux (similar but not as frequented) then I thought Ocean Prime, but I always feel weird going into failry fancy or upscale eateries dressed pretty street clothes-ish and ordering expensive food amongst business entrepreneurs and snotty people. When David asked me where I had decided I was still unsure. So I asked my fellow food obsessed, amongst other strange obsessions, friend and fellow blogger Lee for her suggestion. Right off the bat she said Sublime. Instantly the light went on and a smile crept onto my face. SUBLIME!!! Why didn't I think of THAT!!! I was pleased. So here it goes, my first official food blog.

May 28th, 2010
I had passed by the place many times and it looks sort of like a banquet hall or hotel outside. Inside the place is very neat, pretty and upscale-ish. I'm probably going to use "ish" a lot, thanks to David.
the restaurant is rather large, well spaced out tables, booths and strange 1/2 table 1/2 booths. I did mention to David that the inside, aside from looking like a hotel lobby or hotel restaurant, was very nice.
Ok let's get down to the good stuff. (sorry in advance for dark phone photos)
We started with the loaf of bread with garlic oil.

The bread was good, seemed fresh baked, it was warm, pretty sure it was whole wheat. The oil sauce was good, garlicky and smooth. But basically just olive oil w/ mashed garlic and some spices. It costs about $3.75. I like it when we get a basket of free bread (David would agree), but he needed to start munching on something, plus we wanted to try as much as we could fit in our stomachs.

2nd item, fava bean soup.
I don't have much to say about this, it was the soup of the day, tomato based and very good. I think fava beans are underrated. They are sort of like giant soy beans mixed w/ lima beans, except they taste way better than lima beans :P.

I didn't take the above photo. credit: CookingLight.
I like them. :) How simple of me. For some reason I can't get the picture on here bc David took it on his phone and my phone doesn't want to save it properly. So just imagine a red colored soup with fava beans and slices of basil leaves in the center. For fava bean recipes try CookingLight, a not-so-pretty bean website, or some Moroccan recipes.

As David is inhaling the bread and I'm slurping soup, our waitress comes by with a small plate and two triangles on it and says "compliments of the chef, pesto infused polenta, enjoy". (not sure of the exact words she used whether is was infused, or spiced or seasoned). David and I sort of look at each other half puzzled half excited. Well I was excited. It was so simple yet sooo good. They were surrounded by basil leaves.

Being part Romanian, I grew up eating polenta (equivalent to Cuban's rice or American's potatoes) and I never get sick of it. I could eat it in place of rice or potatoes any day. We felt so special to get something compliments of the chef that we kept creeping at other diners' tables to see if they got it too, and they DIDN'T! HA!

Oh yea and our drinks were called Sublimeaid, basically house limeaid. And they are not Free refills. Again David's disappointment. :/

OK, entrees.
David ordered the Margherita Classico - tomato, “mozzarella,” fresh basil...12. No that wasn't a typos, it's "mozzarella" because it's not real cheese, it's vegan. It's like a personal pizza with 6 slices. The "mozzarella" didn't quite melt properly and the sauce was a little too sweet to our liking. The crust was very soft, like a frozen microwavable pizza. He got the white crust, but there is option for whole wheat crust. Again more basil.

He didn't like it very much but he still ate half of it. We brought home the leftovers and I put it in the toaster oven and made it a little more crispy, it was better.

I ordered the Portobello Stack - portobello, sautéed spinach, roasted tomato, red potatoes, cauliflower mash...19. Basically it was a large portobello topped with a layer of sauteed spinach w/onions, then some roasted plum tomatoes, then the top layer was crispy scalloped potatoes w/ some seasoning and a side of mashed cauliflower w/ what I think was seasoned with Thyme. Did I just pretty much repeat their description? No I think mine was a tad bit more descriptive. I'm answering myself, this blog is getting to be much.

Again, sorry for terrible photos.
The mushroom was surrounded by what David thought was gravy, it was actually a mushroom puree sauce. Very mushroomy, he didn't like it AT ALL. But he hates mushrooms. I just thought it was funny, how would a vegetarian/vegan restaurant make "gravy"? Insert your recipe here_________. So my input on this dish...the portobello was really good, the sauce was delicious, if you like earthy mushroom flavors, you'd be rolling in it like a pig would in mud. The little side salad was a slice of plum tomato on top of a bed of herbs (celery leaf, oregano, basil, rosemary, etc) not an actual salad. My only complaint- the cauliflower mash- :P how do I make a blech smiley? I wasn't crazy about the mash. Cauliflower as it is, is a strange veggie. Mashed up, it's even stranger. It was very gritty and the thyme was giving it a very not-good-earthy flavor, and I'm talking dirt flavor. It was weird. I thought it tasted dirt-like. But I'm sure it's just my taste buds, because I think it's a very popular menu item.

Rating 1-10 (1 obviously being garbage and 10 being phenomenal)
Overall 8

Not a place I would frequent since David won't go back and it's a little pricier than our regular places. Entrees range from $15-$21, but I will go back and try a different dish.

PS- they have a little gift shop/store at the entrance of the restaurant and you can buy a cookbook. 100% of Profits Benefit Animal Welfare

OK, 1st blog down, one more next. 2 new restaurants in 3 days.

Thank you for reading (if you actually read the entire thing).

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