Tuesday, March 11, 2008

casa has spoiled me

casa de luz has quickly become the most frequented restaurant for kristin & i. what started out as an every now & then sunday night meal has turned into an every sunday night tradition. even better is that we have a few friends that are becoming regular “sunday nighters” with us. over the past couple of weeks we’ve even found ourselves enjoying both a breakfast & a dinner at casa during the week.

while casa is absolutely amazing & super healthy i’ve got to tone down what has turned into a “how many plates can brian eat” episode. the food is obviously all healthy for you. like anything though, to much of something can be bad for you. the “bad” parts for me is that i'm finding that it is taking much more food to fill me up when i eat & secondly i’ve got an addiction to veggies & you’ll be hard pressed to find another restaurant that serves up the type & most importantly the quantity of healthy veggies as casa.

tonight i suppose i lucked out. i had dinner at the hotel restaurant rather than driving around looking for somewhere to dine. while i do order meals with meat (mostly fish), i try my best to get as many veggies as possible with the dish i order.

i began my meal with a spinach, beet, & garlic salad. i asked to have it served dry as the beets & garlic where enough to flavor the spinach to my liking. for a main course i ordered the sea bass which was to be served over polenta, mushrooms, & cherry tomatoes. i quickly scanned the menu for other veggie offerings. the bok choy, kale, brussel sprouts, & asparagus all grabbed my attention (a number of restaurants in white plains, NY have had kale & things like swiss chard on their menu to my surprise). in an effort to keep the cost down i asked the waiter to 86 (given that i’ve never worked in a restaurant, it was just over a year ago that i learned the 86 restaurant term while out for lunch with the crew in ft. lauderdale, FL) the polenta & hook me up with a side of bok choy, kale, brussel sprouts, & asparagus. of course i requested that they all be steamed or just lightly sautéed with olive oil. the waiter with a confused/shocked look on his face nodded that he understood & said thank you & walked off.

when he returned with the meal he almost got it right. the polenta was 86’ed as requested & the sea bass looked amazing. however, the chef simply mixed in a few pieces of kale & bok choy with the mushrooms & cherry tomatoes that were already part of this meal. there also wasn't any sign of the asparagus or brussel sprouts. i went ahead & started eating the dish as it was prepared thinking that the waiter would just bring the asparagus & brussel sprouts on the side on his next trip out & i could live with the few pieces of bok choy & kale that were mixed with the meal.

when the waiter finally did return to my table my plate was clean. the meal was fantastic! the veggies mixed up really well & the sea bass tasted even better than it looked. the waiter, gary, asked how everything was & i told him that it was great & then asked about the missing asparagus & brussel sprouts. he apologized for missing them & then asked if he got everything else correct. i explained to him that i was actually requesting a side of kale, a side of bok choy, a side of asparagus, & a side of brussel sprouts (wow - that is a lot of veggies... maybe i got carried away) & that i was expecting the sea bass to simply be served with the mushrooms & tomatoes just like on the menu. he explained that he would take care of it.

i expected him to simply return with the veggies i ordered on the side. to my surprise & delight he returned with an entire full meal & went so far as serving the mushrooms & tomatoes on the side too. he said, “here you are sir & as your requested for no additional charge. i apologize for the prior confusion & i hope this meal meets your expectations.” talk about great service!

in the end i got my fill of healthy & tasty veggies along with two magnificently prepared sea bass fillets – all for the price of the original meal. if only the service & food at every restaurant could be this awesome. remember, you get what you pay for.

No comments: