It was last Thursday night and my mother was coming for a quick visit from Pennsylvania. Since I had to work all day, it was important to make reservations at a restaurant we’ve never been to before to ensure we could enjoy dinner and drinks while catching up. Both my mother and I’s favorite things to do are shop and dine.
While on my lunch break, I scrolled through Open Table to see what was available around 7pm. Usually, we try to stick with Downtown Providence since most of the restaurants are within a few minutes of my apartment.
I stumbled upon a restaurant that I always walk by but never stop in- Garde at the ProvidenceG. This restaurant is attached to the apartments in the G Building downtown. They offer a seasonal Menu of French Cuisine and specialize in fresh seafood and meats. Since my mom prefers quality food and we only had one night together, we didn’t mind splurging a bit on the meal.
The ingredients that go into each one of the seasonal creations at Garde at the ProvidenceG are locally sourced from the New England area and the freshness of each dish is very apparent. Each factor is carefully thought out before a new and unique item is presented on the menu.
Inside View: Being a few feet away from the kitchen made me extremely anxious and excited for each course to arrive. The atmosphere and lighting created the perfect ambiance for our relaxing reunion.
Outside View: We were seated by the window with a great view of Downtown Providence. Fun fact: The library that I studied in for hours upon end and also tutored writing in at Johnson & Wales is in the top left corner of the photo!
Menu: One thing I absolutely love and regret not ordering was a cheese board. There were so many meats and cheeses to choose from and I know that I will start with one at my next visit.
The first thing I looked at was the cocktail list. Being a frequent diner and lover of local places, I have noticed that I can usually judge how good the food will be based upon the cocktail list of the restaurant. Without further ado, I introduce you to the El Nino. I have a newfound love for salted rims and this baby has salt and pepper for added flavor. The real flavor comes from the Shishito Pepper that is blended with lime juice, triple sec, Licor 43, Simple Syrup, and Don Julio Blanco. Quite a spicy way to start the evening!
For the first course, my mom ordered three oysters and I ordered a shrimp cocktail. Look at the size of those tails!
My salad course included a bed of arugula with hazelnuts, stone fruit, Fourme d’ambert (tasted like bleu cheese), and a sweet chardonnay vinaigrette. I finally got a taste of that cheese I wanted earlier!
For dinner, I enjoyed this duck breast with fennel and broccoli finished with a creamy cauliflower puree, warm sour sauce, and a fried farro cake. The combination of all of these different flavors truly created a party in my mouth.
As a semi-professional taste tester, it was required that I take a bite (or five) of my mom’s choices as well. First on her list was the chilled sweet corn soup. The soup itself was served warm with a cold burst of ricotta cheese in the middle. Also in this corn-based soup were smoked mussels and espellette.
Her dinner course included Halibut with a crispy sourdough crust that acted as a thin cracker on top. It sat on top of broccoli rabe, golden raisins, and chorizo with a sweet drizzle of sauce.
Last but not least, everyone needs a sweet little nosh to end the meal! For dessert, we ordered a Hazelnut Mousse that was served over a caramelized praline with hazelnuts and chocolate shavings on top. On the side was a scoop of Pistachio ice cream and a nutella-like sauce.
Overall, I was extremely pleased and have nothing to complain about! Our waiter was a lot of fun, very lively, and played a huge role in our meal. The service was great and each course was brought to our table right after the other was finished. Each course was completely unique and full of flavor. We could really tell how much time and thought was put into every bite. This was honestly the first time that I have liked every single thing I tried at a restaurant and was so excited to try some things for the first time ever (the mussels in my mom’s soup and the halibut). As you can see, I rate the restaurant 5/5 on every level.
Check out the restaurant for yourself: http://gardeprovidence.com/
Also, looking for a place to hang out? Check out the Rooftop at the ProvidenceG coming up in a later post: http://www.rooftopattheg.com/
Visit them at 86 Dorrance Street, Providence RI, 02903 or call 401-632-4799 to make a reservation!
Thank you for reading and please let me know your thoughts!