Girl and the Goat. It is so dang hyped. Everyone loves it. Everyone loves Stephanie Izard. Blah, blah, blah love fest. Well, there’s a reason for it, my friends, and that’s because Girl and the Goat is freakin’ amazing. Totally off the charts, worth-all-the-buzz spectacular. Not only is the food top-notch, but the service is arguably some of the best in the city. Seriously, someone should award those bus boys a medal, because they were on top of it. Hence, getting the “whole goat” in the title. Get it? Okay…maybe I went to far. But I digress…
The hubby and my night at Girl and the Goat was for a very special occasion – our one year anniversary! Cannot believe how fast time flies (there I go, digressing again). When I made the reservation, months ago (note: this is entirely necessary unless you want to eat at the bar, which is also cool), I told them this. Not only did our phenomenal server make a point of congratulating us, but he threw in two free desserts (even though we ordered just one). Splurge alert…but more on that below.
Because it was our anniversary, we started with a little drinky-drink. I had champagne, while the hubby was more adventurous, trying the Double Barrel, a smooth concoction of bourbon and cognac with a spicy kick thanks to the ginger and bitters mixed into it. Our server recommended we sip our drinks and try some bread while figuring out the menu, a suggestion we whole-heartedly appreciated..and followed. After all, it was a special occasion and we wanted to take our time, not rush through the whole meal. We ordered the housemade (all their breads are) nutty apple smacks bread served with ginger butter and with applesauce. I could have eaten this all night.
But, of course, that would just have been silly at a place like Girl and the Goat. Instead, we ordered several dishes, each of which was paced out perfectly. We started with the kohlrabi salad, a mix of kohlrabi (a root vegetable), lettuce, toasted almonds, and roasted shitake mushrooms. The salad was dressed perhaps a little to heavy for my liking, but then again, I normally (and should have probably) request the dressing on the side.
We then shared the scallops, which were a study in subtle sweetness with their perfectly caramelized outsides and smooth buttery insides paired with pomegranate seeds and pumpkin puree. The textually contrasting fried Brussels sprouts (so much for healthy veggies) and spiced pecans served with the dish provided a nice crunch.
For meat, we shared the goat empanada special and the grilled duck leg confit. The empanadas were some of the best I’ve ever had. Seriously. And I have lived in South America. The duck was a total comfort dish, with perfectly cooked, moist meat served with an Asian twist of miso and grilled bok choy.
And if you think “wow, you folks have had enough,” you
are correct have thunk too soon. We couldn’t have left without dessert, it being our first wedding anniversary and all! So we ordered the bittersweet chocolate, which, unlike at many restaurants, was truly bittersweet. This meant that to experience the flavor of the entire dish, and not just the cake, we had to mix the gelato with the chocolate – I loved that! Oh, and the gelato was skiitake-caramel flavored, adding an element of earthiness and realness to the dish. But that wasn’t all. Our waiter surprised us with the pumpkin pie gelato dessert as well, which was, with its warm spiced cake, blackberries, and Thai whipped cream, the hubby’s favorite dish of the night.
While the portions were small and dishes made to share, this dinner was obviously a major splurge fest. And totally worth it. I mean, how often do you get to celebrate your one year anniversary (okay, okay, I’ll stop with that already). Plus, our good friends had given us a gift certificate there for our wedding, meaning we enjoyed the night even more…if that was possible. Thanks so much Linds and Andrew!
Try Girl and the Goat at 809 W. Randolph St.