Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Harvest Restaurant

Where: Harvest Restaurant, 3003 N Thanksgiving Way, Lehi

Who Went: Chelsey & Owen

Number of Visits: 1

What We Ordered: Warm Apple Cider, Curried Butternut Squash Soup, Buttermilk Fried Chicken and Butternut Squash Ravioli

What It Cost: $51.00

What We Thought:

Most of the time at expensive restaurants, I leave the place thinking, "Oh sheesh. How many hours am I going to have to work to make up for that? Why did I spend so much on a meal that was not much better than something much cheaper??" 

Fortunately, Harvest Restaurant was not the same.

I don't remember what was going on (probably I finished a big test or something), but I wanted to celebrate! With plans of heading to the new outlet malls in Lehi, we decided to splurge on this exciting-looking restaurant at Thanksgiving Point. Entering the restaurant from a cold winter night, I immediately loved the warm and cozy ambience. The decor was a little cheesy but still very nice, and we were lucky enough to be seated next to the crackling fireplace. 

We started out with some warm spiced apple cider, which was perfectly warm and delicious on a cold night. We especially loved the cute little teapot it came in, though it was a little hard to pour from...

Prior to our meal, we received this cute little loaf of bread. It was served fresh and hot, and was absolutely adorable of course. It was quite a lot of bread for just two people, but we thoroughly enjoyed it - light airy honey wheat bread with some sweet butter on the side.

I was a little bit on a butternut squash kick for the night - I couldn't help it, it just sounded so good! I was a little disappointed because the soup didn't actually arrive until the rest of my food had come. It would have been nice if it had arrived earlier as a starter like I thought it was going to. Nonetheless, it had a delightful flavor - the sweet squash balanced out by the savory curry flavor. I liked the toasted pepitas on top, which added a little textural variety to the smooth and creamy soup. It was pretty filling; on a night when you're not as hungry, it could definitely be a meal in itself!

Owen ordered the buttermilk fried chicken (with my encouragement), and it was exceptionally gratifying. The chicken was a nice thick cut, which made me a little nervous, but it was cooked all the way through while still remaining succulent and juicy. We liked the flavor of the buttermilk coating, and the buttered green beans were fresh and crisp. The mashed potatoes were a little too gluey for me, but they still had a nice flavor and went well with the chicken.

The butternut squash ravioli was the highlight of the meal for me. I should have taken another picture, but the ravioli pastas were individual little works of art - they were made from this bright red and orange stripe patterned pasta that was really amazing.  Once I could get over their prettiness, I bit into an incredibly savory and scrumptious ravioli pasta that was coated in a creamy sage sauce. Grated pecorino gave a nice tangy flavor that helped cut the creaminess, and the toasted pecans were a unique and innovative touch that really enhanced this dish. I liked the little chunks of butternut squash that were mixed in, and I wished that I wasn't so full from the soup so that I could keep eating it!

What You Should Do: I would definitely recommend Harvest as an excellent choice for a quality night out. I only wished the service was a little better (getting my soup out late/she was not very attentive), but altogether, we really enjoyed our meal here. The food was all absolutely delicious, and we definitely want to go back again!

Read other reviews here:
Harvest Restaurant at Thanksgiving Point on Urbanspoon

Also, Merry Christmas!!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Banbury Cross

Where: Banbury Cross, 705 S 700 E, Salt Lake City

Who Went: Chelsey & Monica

Number of Visits: 1

What We Ordered: Butterfly Donut, Maple Bar, Twist Donut, Chocolate Sprinkles, Lemon-Filled, and Maple Cake Donut

What It Cost: $6.49

What We Thought: 

"Better than Krispy Kreme" many have claimed. I'm not a huge doughnut person, but when I get one and decide to waste that many calories on one food item, it BETTER be good!

Fortunately, Banbury Cross lived up to all the raves and review for us! We went there on a Friday morning right before 9 and it was very, very busy. Since they are so popular, they were sadly out of THE best doughnut flavor, aka Boston Cream. Though definitely disappointed to miss out on that chocolate and creamy goodness, the other doughnuts were absolutely delicious.

I would definitely recommend the raised doughnuts over the cake doughnuts - they were served warm and had that wonderful soft, fluffy, light texture that you always look for. I especially loved the maple bars. The frosting flavor was divine, and they were so good that we almost ate them all before I could bring any home! 

What You Should Do: All doughnut lovers must make this a top destination, and make sure you get there early! I think you can pre-order doughnuts, which may be a good way to go if you want to make a large order or are looking for a specific flavor. They have some fun and interesting ones, like blueberry or sticky bun, and a pretty speedy service despite how busy they are! 

Read other reviews here:
Banbury Cross on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Finals Week

Hey Everyone!

It's finals week so I'm not sure if I'll have time to do a post today. Hopefully everything will go well and I'll be seeing you later this week!

Good luck to all those studying :)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Banana Leaf

Where: Banana Leaf, 409 N University Avenue, Provo

Who Went: Owen & Chelsey

Number of Visits: 1

What We Ordered: Avocado Juice, Sri Lankan Lamprice, and Sri Lankan Chicken Kothu

What It Cost: $37.00

What We Thought: 

I've been hesitant to write my post on Banana Leaf for a while because I know a lot of people are really passionate about their food. I was very excited to try this restaurant after I had heard about their unique menu and atmosphere, and though it was certainly very different than anything else in Utah County, I didn't really love it. The service was exceptionally slow (it took us over two hours to have our meal, and we didn't order any appetizers or desserts), it was fairly expensive for what we got, and some elements of each dish just tasted sort of off to us.

We started out with the avocado juice which obviously sounded very interesting. It was more of an avocado smoothie than juice, which I thought was fine, and it had a very mild flavor and smooth, creamy texture (**Looking back at their menu online, I see that they have now changed the name to "Avocado Shake," which is appropriate). The whipped cream on top was nothing special, and it was served with a chocolate sauce. This would have been a great addition, except for the fact that it tasted exactly like Hershey's chocolate syrup (which I'm pretty sure doesn't contain very much real chocolate at all). We decided to forgo the syrup and just drink the smoothie plain, but it really would have been nice with some chocolate undertones. Since it was also very thick, it didn't really do much to quench your thirst after you ate something spicy, like you might find with a mango lassi and Indian food. But I don't know anywhere else in Utah where you can get an avocado beverage, so at least it had that going for them.

The one thing I absolutely insisted on was ordering something that came in a Banana Leaf. Their menu was surprisingly limited (usually I find that ethnic restaurants have very large menus), so I decided to go with the lamprice (one of two options served inside a banana leaf) which sounded more unique and original.

It certainly was unique and mixed flavors I'd never had before. There was seasoned rice with curried chicken and baked potatoes, topped with a mango chutney and spicy chili sauce. The thing that really threw this one off for me was the fried eggs inside - there was a hard boiled egg that had been deep-fried and cut in half inside of the banana leaf concoction. Visually, it was unappealing, and when I tried to eat the egg with the rest of the dish, it had a very strange flavor. At least I enjoyed playing with my banana leaf while waiting for the check!

Owen got the chicken kothu, which also came with different sambols (chili sauces) and chutneys. Of the sauces, we only really liked the flavor of one, which was a little disappointing. The actual meal portion was rice and chicken mixed with melted cheese, vegetables, egg, shredded roti (the unleavened flatbread), and masala curry spices. Once again, this dish provided us with an exotic flavor. The melted cheese mixture gave a singular briny taste, and the chicken, though seasoned nicely, was a little dry. We weren't planning on finishing it, but our server took so very long to return with our check that we ended up slowly picking at it over the course of a half hour.

What You Should Do: If it sounds interesting to you, and you really like trying new, unexpected food, then it may be worth a visit to Banana Leaf - but only if you aren't in a hurry to get anywhere else that night. I understand that it is a family-run business, and the hostess was very friendly and kind to us, but it's just not the place to go if you are on a tight agenda. I do not think that we'll be returning to Banana Leaf because we felt like it was a bit overpriced, and nothing on the menu is anything that we ever would crave or really want to try again. However, this restaurant is a great place to go if you are on a vegan or gluten-free diet, as many of their menu options can be customized to fit these dietary needs.

Read other reviews here:
The Banana Leaf Restaurant on Urbanspoon


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