Monday, January 14, 2013

Date Night: Restaurant Review

To all my South Carolina friends, if you haven't heard, it's Restaurant Week in South Carolina. Restaurant week is one of my favorite things that the Palmetto State puts on each year. It's a week where restaurants around the state provide fixed menus or specials, with great prices. It's a great opportunity to try that restaurant you've been dying to try, but just hasn't fit in the budget!

Tonight, we decided to try Momo's Bistro. I didn't intend to write a review, so I apologize now that there are no photographs. I know, I know...a good restaurant reviewer would have taken photos. But, I'm new at cut me a little slack.

Before I get started reviewing, I feel like I need to give you a little background. I LOVE good food. And I don't discriminate...I love a good hamburger from Five Guys as much as I love foie gras from Solstice Kitchen and Wine Bar. I am a self-proclaimed "foodie" and "wino". I have a secret (well, not that secret anymore) desire to one day be a food critic; I've just never put the pen to paper until now.

Tonight was not our first visit to Momo's. Adam and I went to Momo's with family friends, and then again with family for dinner a couple of years ago. Both visits were wonderful. We experienced great service, excellent food, and as always, wonderful company. I highly recommend dining out with your favorite people, be it that one special person or a table full of them. Dining with great people always make your experience that much better! A few months following those two A+ evenings at Momo's, we went back for brunch. This was the turning point in our Momo's dining history. Though the food was good, the portions (for the price) were bite sized. And now you're up to speed...

Our experience this evening at Momo's was somewhat baffling. Upon arriving, we were immediately seated, our water glasses filled, and menus distributed. I noticed right away that there was no mention of the Restaurant week specials, no insert in the menu, nothing...There was a slightly-longer-than-normal wait to place our order for our drinks, followed by more waiting to get the Restaurant Week menu (upon my request...) We after what seemed like a lifetime finally were given the Restaurant Week menu and told the specials. I opted to go with the fixed menu and elected to have the Bistro Salad, the Lobster Fettuccine  and the New York Cheesecake. The hubs decided to stray a bit and have the Bistro Fries and the Lamb Chop special.

The first course was very good. The Bistro Fries were seasoned with truffle oil ( of my favorite things in the entire world...) and asiago cheese. They were served in the little French-bistro-esque cone, a great presentation for a more pedestrian food. The Bistro salad was very good, if you're into three leaves of lettuce with an invisible dressing. Now, don't get me wrong, the flavor was wonderful. I would truly love to know how the invisible dressing provided so much flavor. It was action was just on the small side. But, needless to say, the hubs and I dove right into both dishes and enjoyed them immensely.

The second course was where things just got odd...not odd like Frankenstein sitting at the table next to you sharing a bowl of spaghetti with Bambi...just slightly off kilter...We'll start with my meal, the Lobster Fettuccine  The fettuccine was cooked well, just slightly al dente the tomato basil saffron cream was good, but needed a bit of salt, and the lobster was well, not quite non-existent. What little lobster was there was very good, but it was by no means starring in the show (most stars tend to have little more time on stage, if you get my drift). Adam and I both agreed that the dish was fine, but that we could probably duplicate it at home.

On to the Lamb Chops. The lamb chops were a special last night, and they were just that. The chops were packed with flavor, they were salty and smoky and wonderful. The sriracha roasted potatoes had a unique flavor with just a touch of spice that perfectly accompanied the lamb. Here is where it gets weird...the "side of asparagus" consisted of two spears(, two...), the lamb chops were more consistent with what I would call a lamb lollipop appetizer (four, and those wonderful potatoes resembled one small potato cut into smaller than bit-sized pieces. My husband who is a more recent foodie, still values quantity a bit over quality and suffice it to say, he was wondering upon the plate's arrival to the table, where he would be eating dinner after this appetizer...

This odd entree course was followed by my sliver of cheesecake, which I shared with my still-hungry husband. The cheesecake was everything you want in a cheesecake. It was light, airy, rich, and creamy all at the same time. The crust was flaky but didn't fall apart. And the dish was served with a wonderful drizzle of an un-identifiable fruit sauce (it was very good...just don't know what it was...). Aside from the minuscule portions, the food was wonderful.

Then came the meal was fixed at $20. This is a great deal for a three course dinner at Momo's...Adam's entree was nearly double the cost of my entire meal and that's not including the Bistro Fries. I'll be the first to admit, we made a couple of mistakes. We should have asked the price of his entree when the specials were being listed. However, we'd already felt so awkward by the fact that the hostess, nor the server, nor the second server who stopped by our table, never offered us the Restaurant Week menu. Then, when I finally asked for it, they wanted to take our regular menus away - a somewhat odd thing to do. When I dine, I like to see ALL of my options...

I realize now, that it's time to wrap this up...I have been rambling. Overall the food at Momo's was very good. The service was less than satisfactory and the portion to price ratio was bordering on absurd. I'm sad to say, I miss our two A+ nights at Momo's. Those first two experiences were wonderful. I'm not sure what has changed...but let's try to get that back!


  1. Oh restaurant week! Angela & I went to Cellar during restaurant week and asked what the special was, and they said it was their general 3 course special that's on the menu. The food was delicious, but I was assuming they would have a separate menu highlighting new foods or something...

    Sorry it wasn't the best, I'm hoping to go to Terra tonight to try them out...they are my favorite restaurant in Columbia. Sad I'm not being able to attend Charleston's restaurant week, since they have some amazing restaurants.


  2. Christy,

    I was so sad about our experience! A friend of mine and I are trying Dianne's on Devine on Thursday night, hopefully it will be better! I agree though, wish I could be in Charleston!


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