Quiescence Restaurant is located in Phoenix Arizona and is considered among the best restaurants the metro Phoenix Area has to offer. This is a high end special occasion type of restaurant that serves farm to table kinds of foods. Many of these are grown on these grounds that once were a pecan farm from about a 100 years ago. What ever isn’t grown here are mostly locally sourced. They do try to source the highest quality foods possible presented in an stylish way. At Quiescence you dine in one of the farm houses that is from around 1920. The building’s air conditioning doesn’t function as well as it should in spots so be prepared for perspiration. I also should mention again that this is a farm and you walk across a gravel lot to make it to the restaurant so it might be hazardous to wear heels. Outdoor dining is available and a special lone table with a wood burning stove is available for extra special secluded dining.
You order either a la carte, 5 and 6 course tasting. If you pick the tasting then it’s up to the chef on what you’ll get. We went with 5 course tasting because we’ve done that a number of times before and always enjoyed it.
First they present us with baked in-house bread, local olive oil and an herbed butter.
One bread was crusty ciabatta and the other is focaccia with zucchini chips.
Next an amuse bouche comes our way.
House cured steelhead trout with herbed cheese and dill. Just delicious. I could have eaten three of these and considered it a meal.
First of the five courses is Chef’s pick- Corn and House Made Miso Soup with Caramelized Eggplant, Squash Blossom and Basil.
The soup was served table side. This soup was so silky and smooth. The flavors in it were amazing.
Second Chef’s Pick course for me was the Hamachi Crudo.
Fish, Kimchi, Watermelon, Tomato Vinaigrette, Cilantro, Finger Lime, Garlic Chips to eat in three amazing bites. This dish was worth driving across town for as it was astoundingly amazing. Just full of textures and all kinds flavor. Finger limes were like Exploding POP Rocks Candy. watermelon added the right balance of sweetness against the fish, vinaigrette and kimchi. This was my favorite dish of the evening.
My husband had the Octopus and Cannelloni Bean Salad with house made and grown pickled watermelon.
My husband said it was the best Octopus he’s ever had.
Chef’s Pick Course Three we both had.
More Corn Soup that they are calling a pasta dish…….?
Thy are calling this dish Ricotta Cavatelli. Anyway this dish is delicious so who cares. This is composed of smoked hatch chile, CORN, watercress, basil oil, parmesan cheese and few handmade micro-tiny pieces of delicate pasta. The pasta was so delicate and tiny it was doll house sized. I think the soup only contained about 8 pieces but I wasn’t counting. This pasta dish was like an Italian corn soup to me.
Chef’s pick dinner for me – Course Four-
Halibut with CORN TWO WAYS. Corn as a relish and CORN as a puree. Corn was served to me two more times. As amazing as all the previous corn dishes were….and they WERE…… I didn’t plan on a corn themed dinner this evening and my dinner suddenly became slightly disappointing to me.
Then I go to taste the halibut.
Then I am next to speechless………..I would never imagine I’d get served a plate like this at such a fine restaurant……WOW I’m MORE disappointed. The FORKING TRUTH WAS that I can’t cut threw the fish. I need a steak knife. Oooh it’s dry and very salty. It more salty than a salted pretzel. It’s like sucking a spoonful of salt and it’s over cooked. The salt filled sea beans on top of the fish only add more forking salt…..BAH! Not sure what was worse Chewing on tough Halibut or all that salt…….This is forking disappointing.
I tell the waiter about the overcooked salty halibut. He did offer to have something else made for me. It might be hard for you to tell but this is a very tiny piece of fish. After I sawed off a small piece to taste I only had less than an ounce of fish left. Then I sawed off a small piece for my husband to sample. It seemed ridiculous to send back such a small piece of fish and I didn’t want to hold up my husband from enjoying his meal so I just kept my plate.
My husband had the Chicken Scallopini Special.
It’s very good and made with outstanding farm raised chicken but this dish is not the type of dish we’d expect here…….
Last course is dessert.
Out come THREE FULL SIZE DESSERTS that seem out of place after all the small or tiny tasting plates.
My favorite of the Desserts was the Complimentary (given for Celebrating a special occasion) Non-Traditional Apple Cannoli. It had a whisper thin light shell and the light airy filling had a refreshing crisp apple taste.
The dessert that didn’t fare as well was…..
Bread Pudding. This dessert was very rich and heavy. I couldn’t eat it because it was just too rich and heavy for me but my husband ate it because he was still hungry. (Forking Truth!)
The Sweet Potato Cake was the most attractive dessert and was GOOD.
Right amount of sweetness with balanced flavors. The cake had a nice light smooth texture.
The First three courses were Astonishing Amazing.
I loved all the plates before my main entree.
I can’t help that I’m still thinking of the main entree……..I note that I am surprised that they just didn’t replace both my dinner entree (since it was over-cooked and over salted and my husband’s entree plate because this is a high end restaurant. You don’t just eat here…you dine here. That’s the kind of thing fine restaurants do.
Would I return?
YES….. but I will only order a la carte and skip the tasting menu. I feel things would work out better than Chef’s Picks Tastings. Because after four rounds of corn and a tiny dried out salty dinner and getting stuffed with too much dessert ….all Chef’s Choice……I’ll take my chances making up my own tasting with ordering full size plates off the menu.
For more information on Quiessence please visit www.QATTHEFARM.com
Quiessence is still Worth a Fork……..It’s just not a perfect Fork!
and YES I do drive across town to come here.
The Forking Truth