Sunday, August 03, 2008

Black Olive Restaurant, Reviewed by Ralph Rosenfield

Rlaph and Jan Rosenfield are two old friends of mine who enjoy eating out and occasionally tell us what they think about it. Here's their comments on a new eating adventure in Columbus. - charlie

I guess Jan and I belong to the "You never have enough
good restaurants" school. We always seem to enjoy trying new places and
having new experiences. Then of course we get to share these experiences
with you, our friends. The Black Olive is a place that you will want to try,
and you too will want to share that experience with your friends.

Our experience started when our friends here at the
Buggyworks, Rick & Merry, asked us if we would like to have dinner with
them. Duh! We agreed to meet at the Black Olive which had been open for
about a week. I had heard good things... but you never know.

Rick had arrived ahead of us and already had a table and a
drink. Jan and I started with water but quickly moved to a chilled white
wine. We discussed the menu, and ended up with Hummus & Tapenade Plate,
which I would never would have ordered on my own. But this dish was enough
for the four of us to share and get a sampling of house made Hummus which
was very tasty and the also house made olive tapenade which I could have
made a meal of if there were enough there.

We also ordered the Shrimp & Grits - an unusual marriage,
it would seem, but one that works perfectly. The grits, which have been made
with parmesan cheese, have just enough of that sort of nutty flavor that,
combined with the red pepper coulis, marries quite well with the lightly
grilled shrimp. You should try this for sure.

Our final appetizer was the Caprese Salad; the thickly
sliced tomatoes are layered with fresh Mozzarella, basil, and balsamic
vinaigrette. A home run. The only way it could even think about being better
would be with heirloom tomatoes. But that is a personal thing for me.

For our dinners, Merry and Rick had the Pan Seared
Peppered Scallops ($18). The scallops are peppered and heavily seared, but
not over done, in a brown butter sauce. Then they were served over a carrot,
corn, onion, and potato hash. They say it has a hint of provolone cheese but
I didn't get the hint. All in all, this is a great dish if you like scallops
(which I normally don't).

Jan and I shared the Crusted Red Snapper ($19). The potato
crust is light and flavorful and the dish is served with sautéed asparagus
and red skin potatoes. There is a hint of tarragon (and I got the hint this
time). The crust wasn't too thick and seemed more like a light breading, -
just right for the fish which was very flavorful and flakey.

We did not stay for desert; Jeni's is across the street.
So give this a try, I don't think you will be disappointed.
Black Olive p.298 8750 a. 731 N. High Street

Ralph Rosenfield Jr.

No comments: