With a Heavy Harvest, I Write
Few restaurants pick a name that describes the experience so carrotly (correctly, it’s a food pun). It was 6PM as we entered the space; not a soul was in our field of view. As they seeded us, we looked forward to the evening. As soon as we glanced at the menu our waitress sprouted out of nowhere for our drink order. We all just wanted water. If you can’t tell, I’m trying to draw a parallel between our experience and a farm. All right, lettuce return to the evening a-head.
As waitress kept us hydrated, we began to feel as though we were waiting for the next harvest season before being served. But finally a dish was placed in front of us. Edward and Qingxin received a Rock Shrimp Flatbread for $9. Nicole and I had a single Crab Cake for $13.
The flatbread was extremely average—and burnt at the edges. Unfortunately, this was probably the highlight of Qingxin and Edward’s dinner. It’s amazing how even the most ordinary transforms into the extraordinary when it’s relative.
My opinion the Crab cake was simply that. It was a wonderfully average crab cake. It was seared nicely, the stuffing was not over bearing, and it had a light simple flavor. It was average. It was average size. It lacked lumps of crab. This I would expect from a diner, not a restaurant that promotes fresh food straight from the farm, and certainly not when I’m charged $13 for a single one. It was served on a bed of pickled vegetables that easily over powered any taste of crab in the dish. As we finished the crab cake, these vegetables remained on the plate. Perhaps the sauce that was supposed to be served with the dish was hidden underneath this pile.
As we consumed our appetizer, we began to grow impatient. I feared we were forgotten and winter may soon arrive again. Eventually we were served out entrees. To Edward, Artichoke stuffed with tofu; to Qingxin Fish Tacos with salad greens. Nicole and I shared the Macaroni and Cheese and the Honey Jalapeno Cornbread side dishes. I selected the Scallops. Our guest enjoyed (she had a few drinks) a Cheese Burger.
The Artichokes were decent, though lack substantial flavor. The best part about the artichokes was that they weren’t bad, unlike the majority of the other dishes. Qingxin’s fish tacos disappointed her. She even paid an extra $10 to get two extra fish tacos (the dish only comes with two). They were bland and not filling in the least.
Nicole and I had very different opinions on the Mac and Cheese. I believed it tasted exactly like Kraft mac and cheese with Velveeta added. She completely disagreed; she thought it tasted like a Stouffer’s frozen mac and cheese. In either case I could have picked the portion for a fraction of the $5 we were charged.
The Cornbread was a completely different story. We both agreed that it was surprisingly moist considering it just tasted like the black char that was on the outside. Sure the honey masked this flavor as we took the first bites but when it hit the back of my throat you could really taste the fire. Unfortunately I don’t mean the jalapeno, which was completely absent from the jalapeno cornbread. That upsets me. I like it hot. Not burnt.
The scallops were pleasant. Seared nicely, cut cleanly with a fork. The problem comes in with all the garnish. If sampled with the scallop it completely over powered all the creamy delicate flavor. When eaten separately it was cold and unpleasant. I enjoyed the scallops, all the rest was taken away.
I only had a chance to have a small taste of the burger. Unfortunately is seemed as though the lid to the salt shaker came off while they were seasoning the meat. If that is what happened, well I’m glad to see they would rather serve a dish that will turn your mouth into a desert before wasting food by throwing the meat away and trying again.
Two hours have passed since we arrived. After all the cr… manure we enjoyed that evening, we were finally ready for the waitress to pick-up the check. Unfortunately she was nowhere to be found. We were left to sit for another thirty minutes. When we finally left our Harvest experience, I was finally prepared to write this rotten review.
Harvest Seasonal Grill and Wine Bar: ★1/2
200 South 40th Street