In an attempt to act sophisticated, diners often give fancy dishes mediocre reviews, such as "the beef carpaccio was passable," or, "chewing this bacon-wrapped date is like carving wood into the shape of a duck." Let fine flavors dazzle you speechless with today's Groupon: for $55, you get $110 worth of New American fare and drinks at 610 Magnolia Restaurant, located downtown.
Devoted to the emerging farm-to-table agricultural movement, 610 Magnolia uses local and sustainable foodstuffs to create artful and innovative three-course prix fixe ($50/person) and four-course prix fixe ($60/person) meals. Chef Edward Lee, who was recently named a James Beard Award semifinalist for Best Chef: Southeast and featured in Southern Living, harnesses international techniques to infuse southern cuisine with eclectic flavors. The variability of local and seasonal pickings makes dishes change as often as a carousel, but past offerings have included Angus beef tartar with pequillo peppers, wax beans, and heirloom tomatoes picked just miles away, and a mosaic of grilled octopus slices with red pepper, cucumber, and feta in tomato-water gelée drizzled in kalamata olive vinaigrette and oregano oil. 610 Magnolia’s skilled kitchen crew can accommodate vegetarian preferences if they’re noted at the time the reservation is made.
Either of 610 Magnolia’s prix fixe options can be enhanced with an optional wine pairing ($50 extra) from the expertly curated wine list. All of 610 Magnolia’s grapen goodness is poured in Riedel crystal, which gives it superior swirlability and the ability to make drinkers think they’re 2 feet taller than they actually are. The establishment’s elegant tableware, which also includes Frette linen, is paralleled by rustic yet elegant décor—wooden beams support the ceiling, mullions divide the windows, and french doors line the portholes to other rooms and dimensions in which balloons filled with Hot Wheels remain airborne. A reservation is required.
610 Magnolia is open for dinner Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings, with only one seating at 6 p.m.
- The seasonal menu is defined as “New American farm-to-table cuisine,” which seems fair, although it certainly boasts a world of international flavors and offers an occasional glimpse of Lee’s Korean-American heritage in something like a dab of kimchee in an unexpected but delightful place. – Robin Garr, Louisville Eccentric Observer