Kevin and I visited Brick & Mortar last Saturday evening, September 30th. We arrived around 6:00 pm and the ever bustling restaurant was already on a wait for a table inside. One of the reasons we don't go there more often is because they don't take reservations. However, I was thrilled to learn they do now accept call aheads to hold tables. That will definitely change how frequently we visit. We were still seated fairly quickly and greeted by our favorite server, April.
We ordered a bottle of a recommended Rosé that we thoroughly enjoyed! I don't believe that we have had a bottle there that we did not like. To start I was intrigued by the Ahi Tuna Tartare with Kimchi cucumber and Brussel sprout leaves. I love ahi tuna tartare, but I would venture to say, that with the addition of the kimchi cucumber and brussel sprout leaves, it is the best I have had in recent memory. Incredibly fresh and full of flavor! I couldn't get enough of it.
I was not raised on beets, so they always looked gross to me...just because I had not ever tried them prepared properly. Now whenever I see a beet salad on a menu, I am always intrigued, especially if that salad is the brain child of Chef Jason Ruhe. So, next up is the Beet Salad. Not a bite was left on the plate. Kevin and I share everything and this one was a crowd pleaser on both sides. The beets were super fresh and had a great, silky mouth feel. I also love watermelon radish, not to mention how pleasing it is on the eye. The salad was balanced with the goat cheese and nuts and topped with a very light salad dressing.
For our entreé, and this is a difficult decision because there are many great items on the menu to choose from, we ended up going with the special of the night. I am so glad we did! It was a house made fettuccini with pine butter, shaved crispy mushrooms, egg yolk and shaved Bottarga (from Wikipedia: Bottarga is the Italian name for a delicacy of salted, cured fish roe, typically of the grey mullet or the bluefin tuna). We also added Shrimp to the dish, as we were given the option of adding a protein. I can't say enough for how good this dish was. There is absolutely no question that the pasta is made in house! The difference is staggering!
Yes, we have sung their praises before and we will sing them again right now! They have definitely earned their spot as the #2 restaurant in all of St Petersburg as voted on by local foodies!
More Foodies reading about Brick & Mortar:
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A Contemporary New American style restaurant with a few Indonesian and Spanish touches.