Haven, a seasonal kitchen

Date Visited:  Friday, September 14, 2012

We originally made reservations for the combined chefs dinner with items prepared by the chefs of Haven and Quattro. However, after we arrived and saw the items on Haven’s regular menu, we decided to order from it.

We both started with Grey Goose vodka martinis, extra dirty, extra dry. It is somewhat of a standard for us. It is hard to screw up, and the bartender did a good job.

We began our meal with the grilled okra served with avery island dressing. The grilled okra was cooked just enough to get a great char but not so much as to overcook the okra. The dressing was essentially a spicy thousand island, with mayo, ketchup, horseradish, garlic, paprika and Tabasco. It was a nice addition to the okra.

To keep the meal rolling, we ordered the seared smoked pork belly with stewed shelling lead mire piox and crispy okra. Jeff is a sucker for pork belly, and this example was no exception. The pork belly was tender and flavorful with just a hint of smoky taste.

Midway thru appetizers we selected the Porter Creek Chardonnay. It is a nice Chardonnay that uses natural malolactic fermentations and oak aging, however it shows less than in other California Chardonnays. It is a great wine with food, with citrus and mineral flavors.

As the last appetizer we ordered the hill country wild boar chili with jalapeno cheddar, crema and corn stick. Pam is not a fan of jalapeño or cilantro but enjoyed this dish (she just kept repeating “oh wow”). It has great flavors but has none of the wild flavor the can be found in boar. Next time we would request them to leave off the dollop of raw onions.

Pam ordered the wild head on shrimp with boudin, andouille, crescenza grits and worcestershire meuniere. The shrimp were cooked well but the star was the boudin, andouille and grits. Simply delicious.

Jeff ordered quail with jalapeno sausage dressing, green tomato and golden raisin chutney. The plate had two perfectly cooked quail that were juicy and tender. The dressing was moist and chutney added a nice combination of flavors.

We also had to get an order of bacon spaetzel. Although a very good example of spaetzel, the bacon was not very present. I am sure it is a great complement to the dish it is normally paired with, but that must be where it is best enjoyed.

Overall, Haven was a nice place, we enjoyed our dinner and left overly full. Perhaps only one or two appetizers next time!

Menu Link:  http://havenhouston.com/dinner.html

2502 Algerian Way
Houston, TX 77098
(713) 581-6101
http://havenhouston.com/

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