Friday, August 3, 2012

Moules Frites, S'il Vous Plaît.

Today Patrick & I drove to Portsmouth to squeeze a few more hours of work in before the wedding preparations for tomorrow started. Soon we got bored of that and went out to lunch instead.

Out the window of BNG, kittycorner across Market St., I could see people's shoes in the upper floor windows, dangling off of bistro stools & framed by crocheted lace curtains. It sounds like it's the setup to a movie but actually it was just a "European-style" bistro called Michelle's that opened about six months ago--though I'm not sure I understand how you can label much other than bottle service "European-style," least of all a bistro & cuisine.

It turns out that "European-style bistro" means French, with some paella served,  too. But it also turns out that "European-style bistro" also means delicious food, an open kitchen, chic French decor, and a waitress who doesn't care when your parting gesture is knocking the wine glass off the table.

Patrick ordered the carpaccio, which was served with red onions, capers, a perfectly boiled egg, arugula, and manchego. He said the meat wasn't sliced thinly enough, but it still tasted like raw meat to me. Delicious. I don't usually order mussels in restaurants, because I find them overpriced and poorly prepared--particularly considering that mussels are arguably the cheapest and easiest seafood to prepare. They were excellent, though, and the old man who seemed to be in charge--or at least got the most respect in the place--stopped and talked to us about a Californian author of "Harry Potter for adults" books, who had eaten the mussels the week before and wouldn't stop raving about them. There's something oddly comforting about a wealthy, 60-something New Englander. Like since they've spent 60 years shoveling snow they know a thing or two.

Michelle's is terribly overpriced for New Hampshire, reasonable for Portsmouth, and fairly cheap for Boston. I think I just wrote a restaurant review. Get the mussels.

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