First off, sorry, sorry, sorry for the crappy photo. I hate sitting in restaurants and trying to get that “great shot”. Instead I end up with photos like the above. Oh well, you get the gist. On to the food…
If you know me, you probably know that American Grocery, at the West End in downtown Greenville, SC, is my favorite restaurant in town. As I have mentioned in previous posts, Chef Clarke’s ever changing menu continually shocks and impresses me. On this evening, we were downtown in the middle of the week for a friends art show and on a whim stopped by AGR. I had Braised Beef Tongue, Herbed Gnocchi with a Smoked Tomato Sauce and it was, as usual, YUM!
If the thought of eating beef tongue grosses you out, I am sure you are not alone. In fact, when cooked appropriately, it is extremely flavorful and tender. In this case it WAS cooked properly, braised until tender and full of flavor. The Chef must have seared it before or after the braise because it was nice and crisp on the out side, but melt in your mouth tender inside. The gnocchi I would describe as little pillows of heaven, tender and delicious. I didn’t really taste the “herb” in them, but they were very good. The smoked tomato sauce made the dish, rich yet acidic, it seemed to make the gnocchi lighter and the beef tongue richer. You could definitely taste the smoke and spice, but it wasn’t over done at all. Finally the meal was topped with peppery arugula and shaved Parmesan it give a little lightness and contrast.
As with most meals I have enjoyed at AGR, each component of the meal was great but together amazing. Please see my last post (Duck, Jeweled Couscous and Dandelion Greens at American Grocery) for more information on AGR. If you are a foodie like me, you will love this restaurant.