2924 Freeport Blvd., Sacramento, CA 95818. (916) 443-5154
Date night...even at my age, I still get excited about it. On the rare night, when Mr.S. and I have a night without his kidlets and have the foresight to make a reservation we get to have a date night. Date night usually involves dressing up, having a glass of wine and getting to relax and chat over a delicious, leisurely dinner at a nice restaurant. Last Saturday evening, Mr. S. and I had plans to stop by a friend's holiday party and then head out for our date night dinner at Taylor's Kitchen. We had heard great things about the restaurant from friends so we were eagerly anticipating an excellent meal.
When we arrived we were greeted by a friendly waitress, who seated us at a nice corner two-top by the front window. Normally, I would have loved where the table was located but it was an unusually chilly night and the restaurant was quite cold. When we asked if we could be moved to a warmer spot she graciously offered to move us to the chef's counter. Perfect, we could watch the chefs in action and the heat of the stoves would keep me warm. I was pleased as punch. However, with the move in location, came a switch in servers. Our new waiter came and introduced himself, asked us if we had ever visited Taylor's before and advised us of the specials. He came back over a few minutes later and asked if we would like to place a drink order, Mr. S. ordered some sparkling water and advised him that I would probably like to order some wine. At this point, our waiter launched into a full-length lecture (in a bit of a condescending tone) about how the food at Taylor's is extremely flavorful and how one should never order their wine until AFTER they've placed their dinner order so they can pair their wine with what they've ordered. I let him finish his lecture, at which point I told him I would go ahead and order my wine NOW. As someone who worked in the restaurant industry for nearly a decade and who likes to dine out a lot, I was initially flabbergasted then insulted by my waiter's behavior. First of all, I should hope that all the food at Taylor's is flavorful and I shouldn't need to be told that. It should just be a given. Secondly, never order your customer around. Anyhow, we did ask our waiter a few questions about the menu items and I did even ask for an entree recommendation. I felt that he did a nice job in recommending a dish for me. He didn't push the special or the most expensive item on the menu and rather suggested a dish that he said he felt the restaurant did a fabulous job in preparing.
Mr. S. and I started with an appetizer of sautéed sweetbreads served over a bed of shaved Brussels sprouts, hen of the woods, and roasted mini apple orbs tossed with a mascarpone sauce. This was probably our favorite dish of the night. The sweetbreads were perfectly cooked and the accompanying side was absolutely delicious. I could have eaten another plate of this ---it was that good! For dinner, Mr. S. ordered the skate wing with Ecuadorian shrimp and fingerling potatoes in lobster broth and I went with the pan roasted chicken served with red jasmine rice, Cajun andouille sausage, beans and kale. Both of us really enjoyed our dinners. (By the way, my wine choice- the Domaine Terlato & Chapoutier Shiraz-Viognier paired perfectly with my chicken.) I usually don't order chicken when I go out, but was glad I had gone with the waiter's rec. The chicken was perfectly seasoned and cooked---juicy inside and crisp outside. Delicious! At this point, I had simmered down and even thanked our waiter for his suggestion.
Post-dinner, Mr.S. opted for some coffee and wanted to peruse the dessert menu. Our waiter brought the menu over, told us what the night's dessert special was (some sort of molten lava cake) and then proceeded to launch into a step-by-step explanation of how a lava cake works like we had just fallen off a turnip truck. At this point, I'm biting my tongue from screaming at him that when he asked us if we'd ever been to Taylor's before and we said no, did he interpret that as we had never eat in a restaurant before? Sweet Baby Jesus! Who doesn't know how a flippin' lava cake works? I think Mr.S. could tell I was about to lose my cool, so we decided to skip dessert and get going.
So, to wrap it up...the food at Taylor's was outstanding. Their head chef leaving recently to go work for Tyler Florence obviously has not impacted their quality because our meal was perfect. The only thing that tainted my experience there was the service we received. I'd definitely eat there again...but you can bet your bottom dollar that I'll be requesting that we have a different server.