Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A Taste Adventure

Well the time has come for the apron adventurer to step outside the kitchen and attempt new food in a new place. Recently some coworkers and I have started a boot camp run by our very fit/ambitious/inspirational office manager Kim. We run from our office building in downtown Austin to Town Lake, do some drills and run back. While running back a few weeks ago we noticed a wine bar we'd never heard of- Taste.

The ambitious wine drinker/happy hour lover that I am, I couldn't wait to try it after checking out their menu and wine list. Kristen, my coworker and friend, and I went yesterday and had sort of a mixed experience.

First on the list was of course picking the wine. They have a $5/glass happy hour special on weekdays, but I was all that intrigued by what they had to offer, so I tried the Waters Winery Viognier ‘07 that my boss Emily said I HAD to try.

I have to say- it was delicious!

Kristen was in a red wine kinda mood, so she had Alamosa Wine Cellars' El Guapo Barrel Reserve (Tempranillo) ‘01, a Texas wine!

After we had some wine to make us happy, it was time to try some yummy new foods. Their menu was pretty diverse and interesting, so there were several things we wanted to try. Lucky for us 3 out of the 4 "small dishes" we wanted to try were happy hour specials too!

First up, the cheese: There was no way we were going to a wine bar without having a cheese plate, so we went for the small one in order to squelch our cheese craving without ruining our appetites. The plate included a pretty strong fontina cheese and a very different small granual-like cheese that was very sweet like honey. (Note: our server was very incompetent and I'm fairly certain he knew less about wine than ME- which is pretty tough to do. Enough to say he didn't know what cheese he was serving us either :( )

I decided I wanted to be adventurous, so I insisted we try the smoked ostrich. I was not disappointed! Wrapped around buffalo mozzarella, served with cherries and drizzled with a smoked tomato vinaigrette, there was a ton of flavor packed in this small little dish.

Kristen is currently going through an Ahi Tuna phase, so we had to include that on our list. Served with a watermelon salad and melon vinaigrette, this was a refreshing and simple piece of fish that was really fun to eat- and look at!

Finally we had the salumi plate, including speck, salami, & other assorted dried meats with house mustard. I have to say this was less than inspiring, definitely not my favorite.
Overall, I'm glad we went, but I don't think I'll be making a ton of repeat visits. This was a bit overpriced for happy hour, and the expertise (at least from our waiter) was somewhat lacking.
Question: What is your favorite wine tasting trick/technique?


Brittney said...

Kristen = ALL SASS! Loves it.

Anonymous said...


I feel so honored to be a part of of you first adventure outside of your kitchen. I'll let you know when I hear back from Taste. I hope they like your blog :)

Next on our list: Cork and Co. and 219 West?

Lauren said...

I like how you always have your eyes open to new possibilities- even while doing boot camp!

You rock Apron!

Jodi said...

My mouth was watering at those plates and I'm dying for a nice crisp glass of Viognier right now!