Saturday, February 2, 2013

Black & Blue

Last week, my shortest workday was about 12 hours long ... if one doesn't count the 2-3 hours I then spent at home after that working away on my laptop.  So, by Friday (as I texted my husband from another late running work event), all I wanted was a wonderfully cooked steak--and I was starving.  Which is all background to how my whole family found its way to Black and Blue last night.

I would not necessarily describe B&B as a "family" restaurant, especially on a Friday, so I was a bit surprised to see a few tables with children.  And, the menu actually works for kids; well, it worked for mine, who may not be 100% representative of the world's pre-tween set.

The meal--which had attentive but not intrusive service from start to finish--began with a loaf of warm, crusty bread--quickly devoured by the non-me three at the table.  All I wanted was a big bottle of sparkling water (I love my fizzy water!).  Looking over the appetizers, we settled on the She-Crab Soup and a Mixed Greens Salad with Cornbread Croutons.

A quick story about She-Crab Soup: when my son and daughter were preschoolers, we were at the now-departed but lovely George's on Tybee for dinner.  My husband ordered the soup (a low country staple), and my daughter ate that bowl and then a second.  A gourmet from PreK :)

B&B's She-Crab Soup was rich and creamy with a generous portion of crabmeat.  It disappeared quickly.  My salad was the perfect starter: lots of fresh, leafy greens tossed with a goodly portion of small diced tomatoes and cucumbers and a light, sparky white balsamic.  I skipped the croutons, which were scooped up by the table.

For dinner, my daughter and I decided to split the massive Porterhouse Steak, medium rare with no sauce, and three sides: garlic mashed potatoes, broccolini, and mushrooms.  The steak was cooked to perfection with a warm red center and a delicious rosemary-scented rub. There was more than enough for us to split plus give some to my husband.  By the end, all that was left was bone.  So, so yummy!  Upon first tasting the mashed potatoes, my daughter asked if any of us would want any, because otherwise, she intended to eat the whole portion--immediately.  A winner there!  I loved the roasted broccolini, which had a deep flavor and a great char.  The mushrooms were okay but needed seasoning.

My son ordered the B&B "pork and beans": a deliciously moist, grilled pork chop over a generous plate of smoky, meaty barbecue beans.  He pronounced it the best thing ever!

My husband--assured of having some pork chop and some steak--was tempted by one of the specials: Asian-rubbed grilled grouper over vegetable sir fry and raspberry-teriyaki glazed potato wedges.  The grouper was a beautiful white with great flake, and the raspberry sauce was sweet and smoky.  The stir fry apparently included brussel sprouts--which all of us dislike.  But, given the surfeit of food at the table, they weren't missed :)

Then, it was time for dessert: a ridiculously rich, flourless bittersweet chocolate torte; the apple crostada with a side of chocolate ice cream and salted caramel sauce (divided by child: apple part for her; ice cream for him); and lemon sorbet for me.  The apple crostada has a deep cinnamon taste and a lovely rustic look, filled to the brim with tender apples.  The sorbet was a large portion that nicely balanced sweet and sour.

And, if all that wasn't enough--chocolate truffles come with the check!  Safe to say, nobody left the table shy of calories or energy.  Black and Blue, it turns out, isn't just a special occasion place--it's perfect for a long family dinner filled with delicious food for sharing and lots of time for conversation.