Sunday, May 17, 2009

Hos Thea - A Review

So did you know that Michelin has an iphone app? This app tells you of the Michelin visited and rated restaurants all over Europe and you can provide ratings and feedback on the restaurant. It's really a cool little app. Since Boyfriend has put it on his iphone, he's gotten the idea that we should try all of the restaurants and write our own reviews. It's no wonder I love this man!

Today, we tried a restaurant in our own backyard. We went to a small, homey restaurant called Hos Thea. It is located on Drammensveien in the Skillebekk area. The restaurant is very small but beautifully and tastefully decorated with white walls, tables, chairs and spare wall decorations. The waitstaff was polite and attentive and made us feel very welcomed. It 's a nice departure from the usual wait-service around Norway.

The food was ok. It was actually fairly average and unfortunately, not very remarkable. And we had such high hopes! We both started with the shrimp "ravioli" with a lemongrass and cilantro scented sauce. The ravioli were really won-tons stuffed with chopped shrimp and herbs. The sauce was very rich but was a very nice complement to the crisp and tangy flavors of the lemongrass and the cilantro. For dinner, I had a lamb filet in a red wine and fruit reduction. It sat atop some hericot vert and was topped with a braised scallion. On the side was a small portion of gnocchi in a very rich parmesan sauce. Each component was nicely cooked: the lamb was tender and medium rare, the gnocchi were flavorful, and the vegetables were not overdone. My problem was that the dish didn't quite come together. The fruit and wine reduction was a bit too sweet for the meet and was incongruous with the heavy, creamy, parmesan flavor of the gnochhi. The braised scallion on top of the dish seemed like more of an afterthought than anything that would lend a specific flavor to the overall dish. Lastly the gnocchi, while well seasoned, was a bit dense and not as light as I would like. Boyfriend had the grilled hamachi that sat atop roasted potatoes and a basil olive oil. For me, the fish was overdone and lacking in flavor. It was very simply prepared with a brush of oil and a scant amount of salt and pepper. The potatoes were lovely. To finish our meal, we had strawberries in a mint syrup with a scoop of coconut sorbet on the side. Again, I felt that the dish was too busy and unfocused. The bowl of mint syrup and strawberries were lovely. The coconut sorbet, on its own was lovely. Together, the flavors of the coconut and the mint competed for my attention instead of working together to build the flavors.

Overall, the atmosphere of the restaurant and of dinner was lovely. We were not rushed nor did we wait excessively long for our food. The dishes, while not stellar, were ok. I feel that we need to give it another shot before making a final conclusion on the restaurant.
Meanwhile, feast your eyes on this pic of our app: shrimp ravioli with lemongrass and cilantro sauce.

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