Everyone likes to start off a new year by making resolutions to become healthier, workout more, and do more underwater basket weaving than they did the year before. Deana and I are no different so we decided that for January of the new year we were going to abstain from eating all animals no matter how hungry we got while weaving baskets. We did a great job and made it the entire month without cheating once, so it was with great excitement that we took a well deserved trip to Tersiguel's in Ellicott City to indulge in some meaty goodness once again.
While perusing the menu, Deana and I both noticed Escargot was offered as an appetizer. Being that neither of us had ever had this delicacy and we were in a French restaurant, it only made sense to end our animal eating sabbatical with some delicious snails. And so we did. I've always heard that snails are chewy, but in my head I imagined a more rubbery type of chewiness. These snails weren't like that at all. They were chewy, but I'd say it was more chewy like a chewy piece of bread. If you like butter and garlic than you will love the Escargot. And just as delicious as eating the snails themselves was dipping bread in the leftover butter and garlic.
Next up was a simple but fantastic bowl of potato leak soup called Potage Parmentier. The flavors were very clean with a simple cream broth making a rich home for the potato to shine. I really appreciated that the potato was the star of the show. Most potato soups I've had are usually dominated by a lot of cheese or bacon flavors. That wasn't the case at all here. And despite the soup being cream based it was very light making for an excellent starter on a cold winter night. One word of advice if you happen to order the Potage Parmentier is to be sure to allow the wait staff to add some freshly cracked pepper as it adds the perfect bite to an otherwise mildly flavored soup.
For dinner, I decided to go with a French classic in Beef Bourguignonne. Beef Bourguignonne is a slow cooked French style beef stew. Tersiguel's was every bit as good as I hoped. There were huge hunks of incredibly tender beef alongside potatoes, pearl onions, and mushrooms covered in a savory beef broth that was to do die for. I hate when people say that something only gets better the next day, but the leftovers I had a few days later were even better. With Punxsutawney Phil calling for 6 more weeks of winter, this would be a great dish to try before the cold weather leaves us.
Deana selected Poulet which was chicken cooked two ways. The first preparation was pan roasted chicken breast. Of the two preparations, this was both of our favorite. The breast was tender and juicy showcasing an herb forward flavor profile. I'm not sure exactly which herbs the breast was seasoned with, but I believe sage was the main player. The second preparation was a chicken leg confit. I don't remember if I've ever had chicken prepared this way in the past, but it was also very enjoyable. It sounds goofy to say that the chicken had a very heavy chicken flavor, but that's all I can think of. It was like the flavors were concentrated or something and it was fantastic. We both enjoyed the extra crispy skin juxtaposed with the melt in your mouth interior. Both preparations were served with a roasted portabella mushroom and served over a garlic cream puree. I was afraid the garlic puree was going to be domineering, but it was very subtle in flavor and served to help make an already juicy dish that much more moist and delicious.
We haven't visited too many restaurants thus far in 2014, but Tersiguel's was a great way to get things started. It's a very quiet restaurant with great service and superb food. Guys, trust me when I say this would make an excellent V-Day dinner date. If you're smart, you'll make reservations and ask for the table sitting right next to the window on the third floor that allows you to look down over all of Main Street. And when the night is over you and your lady will be as happy as Deana and I were the night of our visit.
Recommendation: Great place for an anniversary or birthday dinner
What to Order: If you've never tried, give the Escargot a shot. I'm sure everything on the menu is fantastic.