Lost Dog Cafe & Lounge always proves to be a reliable, positive experience. For Restaurant Week, I had a good idea of what to expect from my previous experiences, but I was happy to get to try a few new dishes that I hadn’t had in the past. The meals overall were delicious and aesthetically appealing, like usual, but had a bit of a twist.
For my first course I had the lemony hummus, which consisted of toasted pita bread with hummus, olives, roasted tomatoes and cucumber. I immediately wanted to try this option because I am a fan of hummus but had never had a combination like this as a dinner course before. This was a great, light option and honestly felt like a healthier start to a three-course meal. If I had to choose my favorite course, it would be this one because it was a flavorful change of pace. The olive flavor mixed well with the hummus, and the tomato added a pop of tang to each piece of pita. My colleague, Caspar, had the Dog House Salad for the first course and enjoyed his option as well. He was especially pleased by the presentation of the food, and the decision to put the dressing on the side.
The second course came out very shortly after finishing the prior one, presenting itself as a much larger, and again, aesthetically pleasing arrangement. I had the rigatoni ala vodka, notably a Lost Dog Cafe & Lounge classic. As usual, I enjoyed this signature meal and particularly liked that they sprinkled basil and Parmesan on top. If you like vodka sauce, this is an option that can never go wrong, but it does get filling pretty quickly. I thought that the portions were perfect, but I was able to have a decent amount left over from the rigatoni. Caspar had the apricot chicken for his second course and was impressed by this dish the most. The apricot chicken was bone-in, glazed with apricot preserves, served over five grains, kale and garlic green beans. He said that the chicken was cooked well, with a slight crunch to the skin and searing on top. I was, however, a bit envious that his meal included some yummy vegetables.
By the third course, needless to say, I was quite full. However, one must always leave room for dessert, and I am glad that I did. The manager was kind enough to send over each of the dessert options, allowing us to sample the drunken strawberry cheesecake, chocolate pretzel streusel brownie and blueberry pomegranate sorbet. When the desserts came out both Caspar and I were in awe. However, we did admit that neither one of us were big fans of sweets, particularly cheesecake. This was a bit worrying, along with the fact that I was still considerably stuffed from the vodka sauce. However, we were both pleasantly surprised by how the dessert managed to exceed our expectations. The most unexpected discovery was our liking for the strawberry cheesecake. This cheesecake was not like other cheesecakes we had tried before. After one bite of it, both of us had an immediate reaction of astonishment. Compared to other cheesecakes, this one was a lot lighter, with a prominent creamy flavor to it. The strawberries on top were very delicious and fresh and gave a perfect fruity drizzle to the unique cheesecake. I liked the brownie and thought that the ice cream on top was a good choice, but did not have much room left for such a rich item. Caspar was pleased by the sorbet and said it was not overly sweet, but rather was very fruity. He also liked how the sorbet had a soft almond brittle to add a bit of crunch to it.
Caspar and I both agreed that each of the portions was impressive and that the restaurant had not skimped out for the occasion. Additionally, we both concurred that we were a fan of the presentation of the food and appreciated the extra touches that were made. The quality of the food alone was enough for us to both be satisfied with Lost Dog Cafe & Lounge, but what stood out the most had to be the service. The staff was extremely polite and thanks to the manager, Marie McKenna, we were able to be seated at our table promptly, despite the Friday night crowd. Our server checked on us regularly, ensuring that we were having a pleasant experience. From the first course, the food arrived in a timely manner, something that is always preferable, but especially critical for a three-course dinner. Furthermore, the staff was consistently accommodating, allowing Caspar to use the bar to take photographs of each dish, despite the flow of drinks being made. If you want delicious food, a warm, inviting atmosphere and top-notch service, you should check out Lost Dog Cafe & Lounge for Restaurant Week!