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Monday, August 6, 2012

Merci St Tropez!

We went out to dinner in Carmel by the Sea last weekend.  We changed plans at the last minute and decided to visit a restaurant  called Le St Tropez.  I was a little worried since I am one of those freaks that researches restaurants and reads thousands of reviews before stepping foot in the door.  All I knew about this place was that it was French and close by.  Oh dear.

Luckily, it was wonderful.  I mean really, really wonderful.  We had our almost four year old daughter with us and we've heard that children are frowned upon at most nice restaurants in Carmel.  Not this place!  They not only had a kids menu but they chatted with my daughter and made us feel very welcome.  The kids menu was not the typical kids menu either.  It did have some of the junk you find on all kids menus across America - pizza, chicken nuggets, hamburgers- but it also had nice, French dishes.  We ordered her crepes with chicken, bacon, and mushrooms.  It came with some wonderful vegetables on the side and it was delicious! (Of course I sampled it, I had to be able to blog about it :) She ate almost the entire thing and it was not a small portion!  They offered to bring it out as soon as it could be prepared, rather than wait to bring it out with our entrees (another kid-friendly thing to do).

But let's talk about the rest of the dinner.  Oh. My. Goodness!  Seriously, almost every dish was out of this world delicious!  Anyone in the local area should definitely put this on your list of places to eat!

First there was the appetizer.  There were lots of good choices and after some deliberation we went with escargot with brioche served with pernod scented garlic butter. Freakin delicious!  I wanted to lick the plate to finish all the garlic butter but I controlled myself (barely).   We also had a delicious basket of bread that I did use to dip into the crack garlic butter.  Actually that may have been what saved me from licking the plate.

Next we each ordered a salad.  My hubby went with the salad that had watermelon and feta.  It was really good.  I had a deconstructed Caesar salad that was good but had waaaaay to much dressing on it.  LOOK at all the dressing on that salad!!!  Does anyone eat that much dressing???  Hubby made the better choice on the salad course.  Hubby 1, me 0.

Entree round totally went to me, but truly there were no losers this round.  I ordered the veal sweetbreads (in case you didn't know sweetbreads are a very nice word used to describe veal thymus gland, because who would order that off the menu??).  I had never had sweetbreads and I've been on the lookout for a nice place to order it to increase my culinary repertoire.  It was served with polenta and a mushroom cream sauce.  I'm telling you, I had no idea that thymus gland could taste so good!  I think I actually get 2 points for that round because it was so delicious and I was able to mark it off my 'to try' list of foods. Hubby 1, me 2!!!

Finally for dessert, we went with the soufflé for two - one traditional Grand Marnier (my hubby) and one chocolate (duh).  Mine was way better because you can almost never go wrong with chocolate.

So, I won, of course.  Not just because I ordered better dishes but because I was able to have a wonderful night out with my two favorite people in the world!

Wonderful dinner, great service, kid friendly.  We will go again before leaving California.  LOVED it!

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