Last week, we had the absolute pleasure of dining at Eleven14 Kitchen at the J House Hotel in Greenwich, CT.  What did we think?  We LOVED it.  From the bar, to the décor, to the food, everything was a home run.  If you’re going to spend the money, you must have the ambiance, the cocktails, the food, and the wine to go with it.  And Eleven14 Kitchen delivers on all of it.

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As we entered the restaurant, we felt the perfect mixture of warmth with trendy, classic details.  We had heard lots of great things about the J House Hotel, so we were excited to finally try it!

In the summertime, they have a fabulous outdoor patio that is always jammed with people.  If you’re looking for a true NYC summer afternoon out, the J House is everything and more.  And you don’t even have to leave CT!

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Wall of oils & vinegars

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Something to spark you appetite as you walk in to Eleven14 Kitchen

We quickly found our party at the bar, who were getting ready to order cocktails. The menu was full of great choices, but I couldn’t resist the “Before the Open” and Jeff the “B&B Bourbon & Beer”.  Both were just perfection.  

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“Before the Open” – Prosecco, Nolet’s Dry Gin, fresh lemon, St. Germain

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B&B Beer & Bourbon – Bulleit Burbon, fresh squeezed lemon, honey, topped with the seasonal brew

Then came the sushi, which was definitely the best sushi I’ve ever had.  Jeff and I both thought the J House Roll was amazing.  The high quality of the fish was duly noted and we thought the innovation of the sushi was well executed.  It was great to try something different other than the standard rolls that you can get anywhere.

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J House Roll – Salmon, Tuna, Cucumber, Avocado, Seaweed Salad, Rice Paper Wrap

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J House Roll

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Tuna “Sandwich” – Spicy Tuna, Lobster, Panko Crunch

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Hollaback Girl – Citron, Orange Liquor, Pomegranate Juice, Lime

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Tuna Carpaccio Seared Tuna, Avocado, Scallion, Panko Crunch

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Our lineup. The last one was the “Bullish” made with bourbon, blackberries, sugar cube, bitters

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“Tuna Sandwich”

Right before we sat down for dinner, the jazz band started playing some great tunes that really set the mood.  You can find live jazz there every Wednesday night at 7 PM.

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Nothing like a warm fire on a cold night 🙂

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The bar

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Live Jazz on Wednesday nights

Time for dinner!  Everything we tried was really well thought out and was paired with the perfect wine.  The food was ranked up there with some of our favorite restaurants in CT and NYC.  All the flavors were bold and perfectly complimentary.  There was not one thing that was just “meh”.  Our eyes light up with every bite.

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The fall decor really set the mood

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J House Flat breads (plain or with herbs) with extra virgin olive oil

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Representing the “J”

The first wine that came out was a crisp Sancerre, one of our favorite whites.  This paired perfectly with our first dish, which was rich and luscious.  The Oyster Gratin with Osetra Caviar was impeccable and unlike anything we’ve ever had before.  Normally, we would never go for something as rich as this, but it was the perfect amount to just give the palate a little happy dance.

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Wine #1 -a beautiful, crisp Sancerre that paired perfectly with what was to come!

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Domaine Des Grandes Perrieres Sancerre, 2012

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Oyster Gratin with Osetra Caviar

The next delight was the evening’s hearth special – Peking Duck Sliders.  And yes, you read correctly… HEARTH.  Right at the bar, you can watch the hearth turning the evening’s special.  Lucky for us, it was duck!  The sliders were an explosion of flavor with a perfectly toasted brioche bun.  The sliders were paired with the 2010 Hess Pinot Noir, which was obviously a home run.

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The evening’s hearth special … Peking Duck Sliders!

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Peking Duck Sliders

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2010 Hess Select Pinot Noir to go with our next dish

Just when we thought it couldn’t possibly get any better, Chef François surprised us with a pasta dish unlike any other – Late Harvest Corn Agnolotti with Parmesan Truffle Sauce, topped with shaved black truffles.  I’m weird about truffles.  They are very pungent in my opinion and can be quite over-powering, but the truffles were perfect in this dish!  Not too strong or pungent, these truffles were as delicate as the agnolotti.  And the bit of sweet corn just took the pasta to another level.

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Late Harvest Corn Agnolotti with Parmesan Truffle Sauce

Lucky for us, we were able to relax a little before the next two dishes came out.  But we were excited to try what was next.

The Pan Seared Blass Bass with Mediterranean Fish Soup was just up our alley.  The bouillabaisse, or fish soup, was so flavorful and the sea bass was cooked to perfection.  And as a little surprise, there was even a small crab cake to tease our tastebuds further.

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Pan Seared Blass Bass with Mediterranean Fish Soup

Then came the Mustard Crusted Beef Short Rib with Mascarpone Enriched Potato and Natural Jus.  This was Jeff’s favorite dish of the evening.  The short rib was so incredibly tender and tasty that it left us wanting even more… although our stomachs were stuffed to the brim.  We’ll be back for more!

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Mustard Crusted Beef Short Rib with Mascarpone Enriched Potato and Natural Jus

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Mustard Crusted Beef Short Rib with Mascarpone Enriched Potato and Natural Jus

The Short Rib was paired with the Newton Cabernet Sauvignon, which proved why pairing food & wine is so important!

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Newton Cabernet Sauvignon

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Holy shit is was good!!!

Chef François was kind enough to come out and introduce each course to us.  He is incredibly talented and even more so, friendly and personable.  He explained the flavors in each dish and told us how they indicative of his past and cooking style.  His passion is contagious!

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Executive Chef François Kwaku-Dongo is most well-known for his years at Wolfgang Puck’s Spago in West Hollywood and Chicago. In 1992, François was voted one of the best upcoming young chefs in Los Angeles. Food critic Ruth Reichl of the Los Angeles Times credits François with introducing artisan pasta to California Cuisine. François is a 2008 James Beard Award Nominee and was featured in Forbes Magazine as one of ten up-and-coming celebrity chefs. eleven14 Kitchen pays homage to the Chef’s upbringing on his grandmother’s cocoa farm in Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa, where he grew up living off the bounty of the land.

Now… time for dessert.  Each of us were served a trio of chocolate delicacies from the Chocolate Lab, their own Chocolate Shop.  As someone who’s nuts about chocolate, trust me, it’s amazing!

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Eleven14 Chocolate Tastings in Three Flavors

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Chocolate + peanuts

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Dark chocolate + raspberry sauce

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Chocolate Brownie + Fresh Whipped Cream + Ice Cream Trifle

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Trifle deliciousness

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Had to top it all off with a little Ruby Port 😉  Dows, LBV, 2007

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A group of very happy bloggers with our wonderful host, Mark Robertson (Director of Sales & Marketing)

All in all, it was not only a fabulous meal, but it was a fabulous evening out with friends.  Food is a celebration and sharing it with others is really what it’s all about.

Needless to say, Jeff and I absolutely recommend Eleven14 Kitchen and are looking forward to our next visit!

Eleven14 Kitchen @ The J House Hotel

Website: http://eleven14kitchen.com/

Address: 1114 East Putnam Ave, Greenwich, CT 06878

Phone: 203.698.6999

Price: $$$-$$$$

Do they take reservations?  Yes

Attire? Business Casual / Dressy

Vibe?  Trendy, Chic

Hours:

Breakfast: 7:00AM-11:00AM Monday to Friday
7:30AM-11:00AM Saturday and Sunday
Lunch: 11:00AM-5:00PM Daily
Dinner: 5:00PM-10:30PM Sunday-Thursday
5:00PM-11:30PM Friday and Saturday

Parking: Valet Service

-Cristina