Ferneau lunch: restaurant review

Ferneau has got to be one of my favorite dinner spots in town. The menu is always imaginative, the wine list is great, and the atmosphere is pretty fun. Even when we don’t want the full dinner experience, Jay and I will sometimes make the short trip over to Ferneau for some wine and dessert, and, depending on the night, a little evening music entertainment.

That’s why when Fereau opened for lunch in the past month, Jay and I were dying to try it. One big plus about the place is that it’s another lunch spot in Hillcrest, our neighborhood, and it varies from the other restaurants in the same area. When we finally got a chance to go, I was close to shaking with excitement when we walked through the doors.

My excitement quickly faded when I looked at the very sparse menu, the items of which I could count on both of my hands with a finger left over. I don’t mean only 9 lunch items with a few appetizers thrown in, I mean that counting what could traditionally be called appetizers as well as the larger lunch plates, the menu consisted of entirely 9 items. Furthermore, the menu didn’t include any fish items, and I couldn’t help but roll my eyes when I saw fried pickles. My husband and I were joking just days earlier that you can’t open a restaurant in this town without including something fried, and it looks like my suspicions were confirmed.

I didn’t really see anything on the menu I wanted. I wanted something healthy yet substantial, but my only options seemed to be tomato soup and a small green salad. I wanted some meat though! Sure, the caesar salad had some chicken on it, but do you know how many calories are in that dressing? I just don’t understand why some restaurants in town refuse to put chicken on salads other than the caeser.

So, needless to say I wasn’t the happiest restaurant-goer when it came to order. Not wanting to walk out, however, my husband and I decided to split the hummus (the waitress was highly complementary of it), and I settled on a serving of the tomato soup and a small spinach side-salad, which my waitress said could come with chicken (yes!). Jay ordered the burger, which included toppings like the fried pickles.

The hummus was served with a substantial amount of warm pita chips (something too many restaurants stiff you on), and it was absolutely wonderful. Still too shy to use my camera at a restaurant, I didn’t take any pictures, but the presentation was very nice. We devoured all of it, and soon after we finished out lunch dishes came out. Once again, the presentation was very pleasing and typical of Ferneau. With my opinion of the restaurant continually climbing ever since I asked for chicken on my salad, I took my first spoon-full of the tomato soup and it was ….. quite frankly the best roasted tomato soup I had ever had. I was a little sad that I couldn’t order a huge bowl of it all for myself. My spinach salad was good with the addition of the chicken, which was very moist and flavored very well. My soup and salad was also accompanied by fresh vegetables and fruit, which were very welcome on my “healthy” day. My husband’s burger was pretty tasty, but most of the flavor came from the toppings rather than the meat itself, so I wouldn’t rank it as the best burger I’ve ever had. We skipped on dessert, but the table next to us got an order of bread pudding that was so big they had to take home left-overs.

Although I was initially dismayed by the lack of choices on the lunch menu (at one point I told Jay that a restaurant shouldn’t open for lunch if it can’t even provide a full menu), but everything we ordered was so delicious and well-prepared that it made up for most of what the menu lacked. Although I don’t see myself going back any time in the near future, I would give it three and a half stars out of four. I would like to see more items on the menu, but if you’re not too choosy and looking for something tasty, Ferneau is worth a try.

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1 Response to “Ferneau lunch: restaurant review”


  1. 1 vclicquot November 30, 2007 at 10:33 am

    the thing that has always amused me about ferneau and their wine list…along with their semi respectable yet over priced bottles of first growth Bordeaux they list one thats a fifth growth. talk about obscure.


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