Archive for February 2009

P.F. Chang’s Never Disappoints

February 23, 2009

Went to P.F. Chang’s in Fairfax last night with the in-laws and kid.  It never ceases to amaze me that the restaurants in that area are packed with a wait no matter what day of the week it is. I can understand why P.F. Chang’s is overflowing with people though, with its soothing ambiance, excellent food and service and reasonable prices.

This is always a good stand-by restaurant as long as you don’t mind waiting a bit. We ate our standard fare. Apps: pan fried vegetable dumplings, spring rolls and ahi tuna. All were delicious as usual. My father-in-law had a scallop dish that he said was excellent. He couldn’t stop talking about how many scallops he was served. I had the vegetable chow fun, a lite noodle dish with a little kick of heat. It is my favorite there because it is full of flavor, but not all of the fat and calories you’d find in the many other delicious dishes. They seemed to skimp on the mushrooms last night, which is my favorite ingredient, but I won’t hold it against them this time;-)

My mother-in-law and hubby had the veggie lettuce wraps, thier favorites. And as usual, the kid ate what we threw at him from our plates. That’s another thing I really like about P.F. Chang’s, the kid will eat just about anything we give him from our plates and loves it!

In my opinion, the most ingenious thing they do here is the shot glass portions of desserts, which of course we had to allow ourselves. For $2, it would be a travesty no to. I had tiramisu, which was excellent. Last time I was there I has the red velvet cake, which was also very good. The kid had chocolate cake which was good; a little dry, but a HUGE step up from the disgusting rocky road shot he had last time we ate here. My father-in-law had strawberry cheesecake, which he said was delicious.

All in all, another great experience at the Changers!

Foundation is Cracked!

February 22, 2009

Last night, we had a much needed date night and decided to go to a relatively new and supposedly fine dining restaurant near our house, Foundation. Now, I guess we should have been suspicious about a fine dining experience in Manassas, but I was optimistic and REALLY wanted to like it. After all, Foundation was named one of the top 25 restaurants by NOVA Magazine and received a great review from Wash Post. But folks, I am here to tell you that Foundation is cracked!

Let’s begin with the positive. The restaurant is located in the heart of Historic Manassas, a quaint and pleasant spot for a stroll and shopping. Our greeting was very nice. We entered a small waiting area separate from the restaurant, where the host was quite pleasant and offered us a complimentary class of champagne. Inside, the restaurant is nicely decorated with sophisticated colors and exposed brick walls. There were about a dozen tables, all except for one was empty. The chefs prepare the food in view from behind a bar level cooking station, which is neat to see.

For the rest of our experience, the best way for me to sum it up is amateurish. Our waitress was pleasant, but seemed as if it was her first day and did not match the upscale attitude the restaurant tries to portray. I ordered a Cosmo – a rare treat – and was extremely disappointed when I was given store bought Cosmo mix with a splash of vodka. I was already not impressed and we hadn’t even started to eat. The Hubby ordered gin and tonic, which was fine.  

For appetizers we got the blue crab sushi roll ($12) and Scallops Cevicie ($12). The scallops we okay, but the rice in my roll wasn’t cooked all of the way and the execution was extremely disappointing – especially for the cost. For entrees I had Roasted Shrimp Pomodoro, a shrimp dish with risotto ($28), and the hubby had Filet Oscar with a crabcake, asparagus and Bearnaise sauce ($38). On a scale of 1 to 10, we each gave our meals a 5. The entrees were the best part of the experience, but certainly not worth the price. I think they used the same rice in my risotto as they did in my sushi, as it tasted a little crunchy. The shrimp were cooked well and had nice flavor. My hubby thought his filet was not seasoned enough and he ordered it med rare, but it was medium, verging on med well. Needles to say, we decided not to test their desserts, so maybe we missed the best part, but given how over priced everything was, we weren’t willing to chance it.

All in all, our bill after a $22 tip was $134, for 2 apps, 2 cocktails, and 2 entrees. I say, if you’ve got a special night and $150 burning a whole in your pocket, DON’T spend it here.

BTW, we went to see Slum Dog Millionaire after dinner, and just in case you doubted all of the hype, it REALLY is a great movie. I highly recommend it!