Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Copper Bistro

Daves Take:
I need to admit that I wasn't really that excited about going to Copper Bistro. From the website and reviews I read it seemed like just another American, Continental, whatever BYO, bla, bla, bla. To some extent that is true, Copper Bistro is very similar to a lot of the BYO's in Philly, but that isn't that bad of a trait and CU has a good thing going. A nice cozy interior with exposed brick and that intimate BYO appeal. The staff was also very friendly, comfortable and attentive. I ordered the Prix-Fixe menu they offer on Tues & Wed. I'm often scared to order something like that because it loosely translates as "this is a bunch of stuff we need to get rid of before the weekend shipment comes in" but it looked pretty good so I went for it.
The first dish was a cream of mushroom soup which would have sounded more appealing if they called it a wild mushroom bisque or something similar. It wasn't like campbell's cream of mushroom believe me. Great mushroom taste strong with porchini and it was thin showing the use of real cream without thickeners. Good start for me. My attitude about the place is changing. I tasted Jess's gnocchi which is one we aways critique hard. The flavors were very nice but alas, the gnocchi was not light and fluffy as we always hope for but rarly get. Saying that, I would order it again. Next up, one of my signature orders, roasted pork loin. It was great. Perfectly cooked medium rare, juicy and seasoned well. It was piled atop carmelized onions with smokey bacon giving it a complex but not overpowering festival of pork taste. My compadres entrees were also tasty. The bronzino was small but very flavorful and Wade's chicken (can't believe he ordered chicken) was also cooked to perfection leaving it tender and juicy. My opinion of the place totally changed. I'm digging it now. Dessert time. Wade says "I'm scared to order dessert because I don't want to be let down after having a great meal." We agreed but ordered anyway. Damn, he was right. Not worth the calories. The warm chocolate cake tasted like a betty crocker recipe you made in college in the microwave. The creme brulee tasted rushed as it was obvious the eggs were not tempered well before baking leaving a distinct scrambled taste that plagues disappointing brulees. But at least we know it wasn't the jello pudding crap with carmelized sugar that some places try to pawn off on you.
Overall, if you are doing the Philly BYO tour, certainly put CU on the list. If you can't get into Sovalo, walk a block down and try CU. It's a great find. Just don't order dessert. I'm going with 3 pennies out of 4.

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