09 November 2013

Veritas Tavern

Veritas Tavern is an exciting small plates spot located in practically the last place you would think - Delaware. The fast growing community North of Columbus is home to this exciting restaurant. It is well worth the drive if it is far from you to experience the work of chefs Avishar Barua and Silas Caeton, and it's even better if Delaware is in your back yard.

The menu features great seasonal ingredients. While there are a limited number of vegetarian items on the regular menu, the kitchen is able to accommodate vegetarians with additional dishes if given advance notice.

The dining room has ample bar space, and the bar has a nice selection of wine, beer and great cocktails. Mixed drinks are made with quality ingredients, and show great care. 

The decor is fun with cookbooks adorning the walls as well as menus from the restaurants of renowned chefs Grant Achatz and Thomas Keller. While the dining room is whimsical, it could benefit visually from a greater focus and organization.

The feta dip appeared straightforward with cucumber and flatbread on the plate. The flavor is clean with a subtle richness, and the dish is far more complex than the simple ingredients belie.

The potted blue cheese with chocolate biscuits and port wine in a squeeze dropper is a study in flavor. When combined, the sweetness of the wine tempers the strong cheese, and the chocolate adds layers of roasted notes. Each element can also be removed, changing the flavor profile considerably. 

The Brussels sprouts were roasted and served in a deeply savory sauce that made them irresistible. They were tender, falling apart. The sauce held the essence of tamari soy sauce. I'm not normally a Brussels sprouts fan, but these were good enough to order again.

The grilled asparagus with late harvest peas, maitake mushrooms and ricotta made fantastic use of great ingredients. The mushrooms were seared, and the texture and flavor were as close to bacon as anything I have ever experienced as a vegetarian. The cheese added a creamy background to the dish, and the peas sweetened it up and gave the dish a nice texture.

The white and dark chocolate dessert played with the contrariety of temperature and texture. White chocolate was frozen in liquid nitrogen. The dark chocolate was an ice cream, served with an even-darker hot chocolate fudge. The white chocolate dissolved into a rich frozen smoke. The chocolate was even more rich, and the warm fudge added a great contrast. Drops of Pedro Ximenez sherry add complex oxidized notes to the dish.

Service was exceptional. The staff capably deals with dietary questions. The menu changes often enough that regular visitors would not have to worry about repeating dishes. Interestingly, reservations on the weekend are not taken, and diners are seated first-come, first-served.

Veritas Tavern on Urbanspoon

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