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Haute Dish Homemade Fare: Complex, Rich and Delicious

By Bruce Schneier and Karen Cooper

 Haute Dish’s tater tot casserole consists of beef short ribs, creamy potato croquettes, a porcini bechamel and French-cut baby green beans.Haute Dish’s tater tot casserole consists of beef short ribs, creamy potato croquettes, a porcini bechamel and French-cut baby green beans.

A new restaurant finally opens to high expectations: much buzz, top talent, a beautiful space, and convivial atmosphere. And we’re not reviewing it. We can’t be objective, since our son is one of those cooks, and we’re down at Haute Dish pretty often. But we can’t resist telling you how much we like the Dish. So, Chef Emery and his mom had a serious sit down meal, and herewith: a meal report.

Emery chose a bunch of dishes, so we’d have a sampling of the current menu. There’s always change in the works at the Dish, with new ideas and the turning of the seasons.

At the height of summer, we had two exceptional salads. I can’t say enough good things about the house salad, done “South Dakota Steakhouse Style.” Head Chef Landon Schoenefeld is from South Dakota, a land where lettuce wedges have been known as a fancy salad. But here, there’s glory in the details. Iceberg lettuce’s fine crunch is the perfect background for macerated cherry tomatoes, cucumber curls, red bell peppers, dehydrated red onion, and bacon powder, all accented with two kinds of dressing and bleu cheese crumbles. Making the bacon powder, dehydrating onions, the long slow prep for the tomatoes: This isn’t just thrown together. It’s complex, interesting, and so good.

We also tried the picnic salad, featuring pork belly done sous-vide, but which also has a “cauliflower three ways” foundation. Look for cauliflower refrigerator pickles, dehydrated cauliflower chips, and a cauli-mayo garnish. Buttermilk dressing gives the romaine an extra layer of flavor, as do caraway and a taste of chilis, and the oyster vinaigrette adds subtly to the top of the flavor profile, there’s no fishiness. Complicated, stimulating, delicious: it’s just salad, right? Not at the Dish. Each little ingredient is homemade. This is a kitchen of passionate, inventive cooks.

The chicken pot pie is another work of art, the gilded frame here being the fois gras mousse ladled over the top. The pie crust is larded with duck fat; the pie itself includes 3 kinds of roasted peppers (for flavor, not heat) and shredded, smoked chicken. This tasted stupendous, but I’d prefer the chicken in chunks. And here we hit the richness complaint. Most reviewers share our observation that the food at the Dish is incredibly rich.

They’re fine at keeping portions to a smart size, but when the food is heavy, one doesn’t want a lot to eat. That  holds us back from appreciating the hard work and genius that goes into each plate. The egg noodles ought to have been better. Homemade noodles were perfectly prepared, but the eggplant ragu just didn’t have the power to carry the dish, even with those lovely macerated yellow tomatoes. It was almost a ratatouille, but that’s not a dish that needs noodles. This was fine, but had no star power.

We moved oneven though we were getting fullto the fish special, which that evening was a perfect marlin, done to a turn and highlighted with shitake and chanterelle mushrooms and summer squash. The ponzu sauce gave the dish lightness and depth of flavor: this was wonderful.

You can try Chef Emery’s pork rillettes, highlighted with orange and topped with apricot jam, on the char-cuts plate. This take on the French charcuterie offers sous-vide chicken liver mousse; mortadella, a grown-up boloney, and a pork terrine along with the pickles and mustard one expects. It’s protein heavy, but everything is made with skill.

Haute Dish isn’t cheap, and it’s hard to eat light there. But it’s a fun place for groups, and we’ve enjoyed ourselves every time we’ve been.

Bruce Schneier and Karen Cooper are longtime food lovers and occasional food writers. They live in South Minneapolis.

 

Haute Dish
119 Washington Ave N,
Minneapolis, MN 55401

612-338-8484

www.haute-dish.com

Cuisine Type: Nouveau Midwestern

Reservations: Recommended

Diet Choices: Some few vegetarian options, but vegans won’t do well here.

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