Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Balboa Island is just 5 minutes away, but we only recently discovered Basilic a few months ago. It's a very small place, like the types of family owned Bistros you see in Paris - 8 or 10 tables in a warm, dimly lit room with only one waiter. You can't just walk in at dinner time and expect to be seated, they were always booked up. Then, when we'd think ahead of time about it, we could never remember the name! Long story short, we made reservations eventually and the rest is history. It's one of our favorite places!

The food is Swiss French. Classic French cuisine, with a Swiss flair. For us, it's one of those splurge places. It's not extremely expensive, but it's extremely decadent, and I think it should be appreciated, so we don't overdo it. On Saturday night it's always full of super wealthy Newport snobs. Doesn't bother me. The owner isn't a snob, either is the waiter or the chef. Besides, it's the kind of place that you just feel comfortable at no matter who you are, what you're wearing or who you're sitting next to. 

So, on to the food. 

Appetizer: Braised Endive with Prociutto and Gruyere Gratin (this was out of this world!)

Appetizer: Foie Gras, seared with Balsamic Glaze and Blackberries (huge piece of Foie, seared perfectly!)

Entree:  Steak au Poivre - Grilled New York Steak with creamy Black Peppercorn Sauce (I highly recommend it!)

Entree: Coq au Vin - Braised Chicken, Burgundy Wine and Mushroom Sauce

Dessert: Strawberries & Whipped Cream atop a Merengue

Dessert: Ice Cream - Strawberry & Vanilla

About this time the Chef is going table to table, asking how everyone's dinner was.