Photo courtesy of PocketmonsterdBlaue Gans
139 Duane St.
I took advantage of the lunch break they gave us today (I was on Jury Duty), by dining at a restaurant usually out of my way, yet near the top of my list of places to try...Blaue Gans (Blue Goose).
I loved a previous visit to Wallse, was completely turned off by Thor, and had no idea how this particular Guttenbrunner dining experience was going to pay off.
In essence, it was somewhere in between the two previous experiences.
I opted for the prix fixe lunch menu ($20 -- $21.09 after tax) which today featured either a cabbage/beet salad or a potato leek soup to start, weinerschnitzel or lake trout for an entree and I don't recall a choice for dessert.
The bread they served was very nice with a plush middle and crunchy, slightly hard crust. The whipped butter with what seemed to be a sundried tomato/chipotle combo (similar to what you get if you order the fry bread at Blue Smoke) was, to me, out of place but addictively delicious. I can't confirm the ingredients.
I started with the potato leek soup, which looked really nice upon arrival. The first taste was a bit bland, so I stirred it up a little with my spoon, making the flavors come alive a bit, though it made the "prettiness" of the dish a little less so (though a bit more kaleidescopic, which is kinda cool). That helped. Nice soup and a good portion - not too little, not too much.
Then the trout came out. Wow. What a disappointment. I would never have sent a dish looking like this out to a table. Granted, I was the first person in the restaurant (perhaps the pans weren't ready yet?), but the two halves of the fish facing me were cooked quite differently. One side was charred slightly, the other was properly sauteed. This is just the side of the fish facing me. The other side (on the plate) was seared perfectly. Why didn't they flip the damn fish over at least? Very pedestrian.
Yes, I should've said something at the time but wanted to get back so as to not hold up the jury process. The fish itself was fine. The off-target sauteeing didn't necessarily effect the taste...other than the skin.
The dessert was a slice of a coffee cake-like dessert (bundt pan style) served with a sour whipped cream. Not bad sour, just not really sweetened. This was fine. Nothing special whatsoever.
Overall, not a great showing. The fish was ridiculous and quite frankly the chef should be ashamed of sending something like that out. Hard to get me think about returning...even for the more Austrian dishes. If I want Austrian, I'll go back to Wallse. If I want bratwurst or other sausage...I'll go to Hallo Berlin.