Austin Eats, Friday: FINO

I did a great job of cooking all week… but once Friday hit, it was all over. We were back in the restaurant groove. :)  (All photos below are from my iPhone… sorry about the poor quality!)

Friday evening, dinner at FINO. We sat at the bar and chatted with Bill while he mixed up some fabulous drinks for us. Bill had a great drink special, and the kitchen had just started a new menu, so it was a great night! Throughout the evening, we had:

  • Fried Anchovy Olives, because Justin is incapable of going to FINO and not ordering these
  • Toasted baguette with harissa pine nut butter and apple – A little bite of loveliness.

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  • Queso Idiazabal & Sherry Glazed Pearl Onions – a skewer of lovely cheese and sweet onions

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  • Artisan Cheese Board with Quince & Almonds – two excellent cheeses, balanced perfectly with the almonds and quince
  • Chorizo, Leek & Petit Basque Coca – Spanish-style flatbread, topped with a fried egg. The chorizo was dense and delicious, the egg perfectly runny. (I have a hard time not ordering the coca every time we come… it’s always sooooo good)

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  • Grilled Wild Salmon with Oyster Mushrooms & Celery Root Crema with Red Wine Gastrique – wow. I was really happy with this dish… the salmon was so perfectly cooked, with a crispy skin, and the mix of the salty mushrooms, the buttery celery root puree, and the smooth red wine sauce was just amazing. It seemed so creative and surprising to have a fish course paired with a red wine sauce and a root puree… it was grounding and comforting and autumnal and delicious.

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  • Scallops & Pork Belly with Saffron Bomba Risotto, Apple & Honey – Seriously. Can pork belly EVER be bad? The scallops were perfectly cooked, the risotto so reminiscent of my mom’s fideo, soupy and tomatoey and soothing somehow.

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  • Meyer Lemon Creme Catalan with Blueberry Composita & Fried Sage – This was wonderfully light, with a caramelized sugar top. A bit looser and grainier than flan, with just a hint of lemon.
We had a few cocktails during the 2 1/2 hours we were there (it was raining outside, and there was really nowhere better to be). Bill’s special was Plymouth Gin, Watermelon-Basil Gastrique, Dolin Blanco and an egg white. Perfect. We also had a Martinez, a Manhattan, a Dark & Stormy, and a Ginger-Apricot Daquiri. Bill’s drinks are always amazing.
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But that was just the beginning of our foodie weekend. :)

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