Saturday, August 02, 2008

Santa Fe's 315 is a find in a city of varied cuisine

I've been coming to Santa Fe for over 25 years, and was thrilled to hear some raves about a new dining spot called 315. Upon arrival at 315 (located at 315 Old Santa Fe Trail -, my server advised me the adorable French-style bistro had been open for twelve years! Was I shocked!

315 is a small, slightly cramped indoor space of yellow and blue adobe walls, but cooler than the outside seating in the almost 90 degree heat. The walls have vases of dried flowers and small oils of the French countryside making for a nice ambience. The wine list is varied (it is actually called 315 Restaurant and Wine Bar, and I ordered a glass of SCHUG Sonoma Valley Sauvignon Blanc and kept it to just the one glass as another long opera was in store for that evening.

The menu is also varied, but its the blackboard of specials that seems to draw everyone's attention. I immediately decided on the SQUASH BLOSSOM BEIGNETS over Goat Cheese Fondue and Tomato Coulis. There were six or so large blossoms, lightly battered and fried to perfection over a light cheese sauce and coulis that had just the right amount of flavor to enhance these treats. They were my first squash blossoms of the season and indeed, it's been a year since my last tasting of these rare delicacies.

My entree was LINE CAUGHT KING SALMON and SWEETBREAD NAPOLEON with SUCCOTASH, ZUCCHINI SOUFFLE and Local Farmer's Market Scallion Coulis. The northwestern salmon was perfect and the sweetbreads ideal, but I am not sure why it was called a Napoleon as it was simply the two on the plate with no real "layering" or such. The succotash sat bowl-like inside the small souffle, which was okay, but a bit dry; the scallion sauce sublime and solved any dryness in the small souffle.

I felt the simple standard desserts were not on the charts and enjoyed a superb cappuccino before heading to FIGARO.