Another night that reminds me of how fortunate I am to be able to enjoy the things I do...or in this case eat. It was Date Night last night, and since w had never been to Alberta Oyster Bar & Grill (2926 NE Alberta St.,503.284.9600), that was her pick. Turned out pretty well too. Much better than the two photos. But hey, it was pretty dark in there, and it seems rude to be flashing pictures and blinding my fellow diners just so I can stick some half assed food shots on here, so that's what ya get. Anyway, the point is the food was rocking. We started out our evening at Siam Society with a couple of their specialty cocktails. SS is a quasi-thai bar and restaurant built inside an old PGE sub-station. Even though these words wouldn't normally go together, it has this elegantly industrial feel. My caipirinha was perfect. I love that smoky cachaça flavor. w had their lycheetini, good but a bit sweet for our tastes.
Then off up the street to AOBG for more indulgence. I always like walking into the cozy interior here. Yeah, it's dark, but not too, and has a very comfortable vibe. So what else are you going to hit first there but some fresh shucked oysters? They usually have around ten different choices. We picked the Fanny Bays and the Cortes Island. They were both excellent, with the Cortes' getting the slight nod with their more assertive, briny flavor. The only quibble I have is the price. At $15 per 1/2 dozen they are about $3-$5 more than anywhere else. I washed mine down with an ever satisfying Tanqueray martini, while w had the excellent '05 Patricia Green Sauv Blanc. Both worked it in their own way. We followed with a baby arugula salad with toasted walnuts and blue cheese. Very good, balanced, fresh. And if you think I could resist something called Foie Gras French Toast, you would sadly mistaken. Foie Gras French Toast. I just like saying that. This was a perfectly decadent piece of the fattened goose that was so good!
We had the waiter pop the cork on the 2001 Gozzolino "Il Sciorio" Barbera d'Asti I brought along. I absolutely adore this wine, and it is one of the finest $20 bottles of wine you can buy. Killer juice...earthy, rich, ripe, and perfect with so many different foods. In this case perfect with our two entrees (pictured..sort of...above). Mine was a duck breast on top of a bed of greens with little squares of potato gnocchi, while w scored big with their monkfish and oxtail plate. Kind of a gourmet version of surf and turf. Very nicely done. We were stuffed and wisely decided to skip dessert after all that goodness. All in all this was a great dinner without one missed note. Really impressive and will have me coming back any chance I get!