Sunday, July 19, 2009

Novita Bistro

Jess' Take:
For my birthday foodie dinner we hit up Novita Bistro, a Mediterranean influenced BYO at 16th and South. The restaurant is very typically BYO, small and cute. I was disappointed to see that they didn’t have hummus on the menu, since that may or may not have been the reason that I chose the restaurant, but I was still intrigued by the menu’s other offerings.

I started with the Merguez, which was described as a Moroccan lamb sausage. It was served on top of a chick pea puree. Now, if you can get past the way this dish looks then I think you’ll enjoy it. However, that may be a bit of a task. Fortunately I’ve got a strong stomach. The sausage had a really delicate flavor that included mint, which was really nice. However, it was also on the dry side, which is where the chick pea puree came in handy. To really enjoy this dish each bite of sausage needed to be accompanied by the puree. Despite this, it was a nice starter.

Keeping with the Moroccan theme, I went for the Moroccan Tagine for my main entrée. This might be the first time in five year’s I’ve ordered chicken in a restaurant, but I’d heard good things about the dish, and the waiter gave it high marks. It arrived in a super fancy painted dish, which I assume is traditional Moroccan. When the lid was lifted the smell of the dish hit me and it was delicious. Although the taste of the chicken was nice, I found myself wanting a little more flavor (maybe this is why I typically don’t order chicken?). I loved the preserved lemon that was served with it, which gave a nice added flavor; unfortunately I can’t say the same for the potatoes, which were very bland.

Although I love the concept of this Novita Bistro and the possibilities of the menu, I’m not sure I’d make a special trip back. If I have a craving for Moroccan I’m going to hit one of our old standbys, Fig, before heading back to Novita Bistro.

2 gross looking sausages out of 4.

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