Friday, December 31, 2010

Ici Urban Bistro

Last date I was here: 12/31/2010

Restaurant: Ici Urban Bistro (

Location: McPherson Square

Total Rating: 4.15
Food: 4, Price: 4, Service: 5, Ambience: 4, Accessibility: 5

Summary: Located in the Sofitel Hotel at Lafayette Square, Ici Urban Bistro showcases a modern approach to classic French cuisine. Closest Metro is McPherson Square.

Keith and I chose Ici Urban to celebrate New Year's Eve. With the 6 course offering including a glass of champagne for $99 and the attaching Le Bar for an after party to watch the ball drop, we thought it was a good deal. We had the later seating, but I was surprised to see the restaurant not as full as expected. Also, I felt the festive decor to be a bit lacking for the celebration. They could have added some balloons, or something to spruce up the typical hotel restaurant feel. Regardless, our service was excellent with everyone speaking a few key French phrases here and there. We were immediately greeted with our glass of champagne and a lovely varietal bread basket. The first course was an amuse bouche of an oyster on the half shell. Second was the appetizer course, and I really enjoyed my scallops. Very fresh and cooked just right. Third was a palate cleanser of blood orange and Grand Marnier granita. Fourth was our main entree and although the portion size was good, I felt my risotto was a touch bland despite the shavings of black truffle mixed in. Keith tasted it and thought it was very good, which was seconded by the couple next to us who also ordered a side portion of the risotto. Perhaps my palate was too clean - ha ha. Fifth was a cheese sampling of some very strong French cheeses with grapes and walnuts. Sixth was the dessert, again a large portion, but I enjoyed it very much. Overall, my meal was very satisfying and having the extended courses was perfect to pass the time until it was closer to midnight. Afterwards, we walked over the the attached Le Bar, where there was more of a crowd, with 30 minutes to go until the countdown. We sat on a cushioned bench near the window and waited for the count down. It was a nice subdued way to end the evening and ring in the new year!

What I ate:

Pan Seared Scallops
Grilled pineapple, Chioggia baby beets confit

Black Truffle Risotto
Parmesan and arugula

Dark Chocolate Gourmandize
Roasted pecan crust, spiced cream

Plus Keith ate:

Roasted Quail and Foie gras Terrine
Shallot chutney, fresh tarragon

Butter Poached Maine Lobster
Chestnut purée, glazed turnips, Razor clams

Vanilla and Black Current Vacherin
Crispy meringue

Ici Urban Bistro on Urbanspoon

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