Jan 2012 Note: This review reflects the menu of a previous chef. A new review will be provided soon.
Cedar Creek causes ripples.
The coursing, energetic spot takes over a site that by now mimics an archaeological dig. It rises where Fino Rosso, Spark, Mask and Veranda all have ignited ovens.
But Cedar Creek goes in a different direction, with a more relaxed approach, both in the streamlined, clubby dining room and in the no-longer-open kitchen. The result is just what the neighborhood needs. Actually, it's what yours does, too.
Start with snacks: addictive house-made potato chips blanketed with a fondue-style melt of Maytag blue cheese; a zesty pulled-pork slider with coleslaw; spicy little Chicago-style hot-dogs juiced up with peppers, pickles, onions and tomatoes; crisp-outside, briny-inside fried Fire Island Creek oysters; rich duck rillettes with walnut toast and blood-orange marmalade.
Then, sample the husky, fired-up Texas chili; and quietly defy the cardiologist with roasted beef marrow. Or go light with a fine beet salad. Tender mussels turn "angry" with chili oil, smoked tomatoes and blackened bacon. The juicy grilled sirloin stands out, pepper sauce on the side. Add an order of deluxe whipped potatoes. And, of course, you'll find a tasty Meyer Ranch prime Angus burger, with first-class toppings. Likewise, savory pulled chicken, more like a stew, with vegetables and biscuits. Beer-battered Chatham cod and hand-cut fries elevate fish-and-chips. Organic barley stars in the risotto.
Leading the sweets: professional crème brûlée, creamy banana-Betty parfait, pineapple upside-down cake, profiteroles, Gooseberry Grove ice cream, imported from Oyster Bay. Good brews and wines, too.
Pasty Buffalo-chicken dumplings, dry pork schnitzel, routine grilled branzino, standard onion soup, too-tailored Cuban sandwich.
THE BOTTOM LINE