Thursday, July 12, 2012

112 Eatery

I visited 112 Eatery with a small group of girlfriends recently. When I've gone out with this group in the past, we've gone to mostly chain restaurants in the suburbs, but we decided to branch out and try somewhere different this time.

We shared all of the appetizers and desserts and everyone was trading entrees back and forth as well, so everyone got a try a variety of items, which I thought made the night very fun.
We started with a few appetizer type items, first being the cauliflower fritters. I am pretty sure we all loved this dish. The cauliflower was tasty, surprisingly light and not overly deep fried.

This was the surprise hit of the table I think. I was not sure if the sweet and sour crab salad sounded good on the menu, but it looked and tasted amazing once it arrived. It had shredded cabbage, carrots, crab and a sweet and sour dressing. One person claimed they did not care for crab, but they tried the salad and liked it.

We also ordered the ricotta with white truffle honey. I had no idea what to expect with this dish before it arrived, but this was really light and refreshing. The ricotta was so light and airy and the honey have it such a wonderful sweet flavor, without becoming overpoweringly sweet. I wish it had come with more bread though.
I was really looking forward to trying the pan fried gnocchi with Parmesan and I was not disappointed. It was so light and salty with a tiny bit of crunch as well. We all loved this dish too. I'd like to try gnocchi at other restaurants but something tells me this is an excellent example of it and it is probably easier to do bad gnocchi than good gnocchi. I can't wait to go back and order this again.

Tara was very adventurous and ordered the tagliatelle with foie gras meatballs and the frog legs with wakame and mustard sauce. Tara loved the frog legs because they were tender and meaty.  Cheryl detected a note of seafood-ness to them which mades us wonder what kind of liquid they were cooked in.  Whatever it was, it definitely made them not just a "tastes-like-chicken" dish. I tried a bite of the pasta and you could tell it was handmade pasta- very delicious. Tara said she loved the meatballs because it wasn't just foie, there was she thought, veal and breadcrumbs mixed in, which cut the richness of the foie, in a good way.

Tonya had the 112 burger and she said it was great. She especially liked the English muffin style bun it was served on and it did not disintegrate as some burger buns tend to do.

Dawn and Cheryl both ordered the nori encrusted sirloin with ponzu. I had a bite and this was wonderful steak. It was so tender and cooked perfectly. I would not have considered ordering steak at 112 before this, but I'd like to try this dish again sometime.

I had the bacon, egg and harissa sandwich. This is one of my favorite sandwiches ever. But then I love bacon. A lot. This was good bacon too, crispy, thick and smoky. The sandwich is deceptively simple, but the harissa packs a lot of spice and flavor. And there is nothing better than an over easy egg in a sandwich.

The roasted asparagus with lardo was also really good. Something about this restaurant really makes me want to eat vegetables! The asparagus (or maybe it was due to the lardo) had a slight smoky flavor which I enjoyed. We also learned what lardo is, which is basically a thin layer of pork fat. In the photo of the asparagus it is the off white stuff that looks kind of like cheese. It added a nice salty flavor to the asparagus.

I also ordered the blue prawns with rooster mayo, which were just OK. The sauce was really quite spicy and I thought the shrimp had a slight mealy texture for some reason. Not sure that I would order them again.

We all loved the donut cake with raspberry jam and ice cream. The donut was so light and fluffy it was amazing. I am not sure if I even had a bite of the white chocolate mousse and blueberry compote. I was so full at that point!

We had a great meal and enjoyed our dinner a lot. The service was excellent. We may have waited briefly for new forks at one point but that was the only issue we encountered. The menu is varied enough that even the people in our group with dietary restrictions and non-adventurous palates could find something good to eat. I think we all tried at least one new food during this dinner, which is very impressive!

Deals & Discounts: I wish. Sorry, no deals here that I have ever heard about.

112 Eatery
112 North 3rd Street
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55401

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