Monday, July 28, 2008

456 Fish - Restaurant Week dinner #1

One of my two favorite weeks of the summer restaurant week. So obviously I had to go out at least once, this time I was lucky enough to go out twice! My first dining experience was at 456 Fish with some girlfriends.

Located at 456 Granby Street in downtown Norfolk, 456 Fish is where modern fusion cuisine meets decor of the early 1900's Norfolk. It's got a really cool vibe to it, complete with an amazing menu and wine/bar list. For restaurant week you are allowed to choose 1 each from 3 courses for $30. My critique of restaurants during restaurant week is what the menu looks like. First, do they have a good selection that is truly representative of the normal menu? And two, are they really trying to tempt your palate to bring you back to spend the full amount. 456 answered yes to both of these.

To start I had the sesame seared tuna sashimi. Delicious. I love fresh tuna and this was just awesome. Friends had the calamari, which was a huge portion for an appetizer (especially for restaurant week) and absolutely amazing. Again, great tastings from the full menu and great portions as well.

For the entree I had the grouper. This is on the regular menu and again, a huge portion for restaurant week. The grouper is cooked in a spicy tomato based sauce with spinach over fried plantains (the kicker for me). I really love grouper and I think it really held up to these strong flavors without being overpowered. Friends had the crab cakes and the sesame seared rare tuna. I did not try the tuna since I had already had the appetizer version of it, but it looked excellent they raved about the tuna and the wasabi mashed potatoes. I did try the crab cake and they were quite good. I'm pretty picky about my crab cakes, usually complaining about there being too much filler; the ones at 456 definitely had the normal filler but was at the edge of having just the right amount.

For dessert I was a bit disappointed the creme brulee ran out before I got some, so I had the guava cheesecake instead. The cheesecake was excellent and was clearly a classic Italian cheesecake made with ricotta (my preferred version of the delicious dessert). Guava sauce was poured on top and it was excellent giving just enough of a sweet taste to balance the creamy cheesecake. Friends had the chocolate sin cake which was very tasty, but also very rich. The portion looked the right size though luckily so it wasn't overkill on the pure chocolate.

So, here's the wrap up...

Food: 4 (out of 5)
Cost: $$$ (out of 5, restaurant week menu only)
Atmosphere: 2 thumbs up

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