Seasons and Sessions

Seasons and Sessions is the newest iteration of Black Squirrel (RIP) and my husband and I were eager to try it (after quickly mourning the loss of our dearly departed squirrel). The dining room was fairly desolate for a Saturday night, but that allowed us to sit in the VIP window seat, where a small portion of Black Squirrel’s checkerboard vinyl flooring lives on:

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The beer list is outstanding, although maybe a little heavy on IPA’s, especially given that it’s like -20 degrees outside. I ordered the Crooked Run Clobbler Berlinerweisse, a beer my husband has previously described as “tasting how I imagine a clown would taste” (it’s made with blueberry and vanilla so it bears a weird resemblance to Fun Dip–plus it’s pink!) and he had a Founder’s stout. Both delicious, both speaking to us.

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Seasons and Sessions has taken some care to pretty-up the main floor and make sure we all know it’s a classy joint now. The bathrooms are 100% less dingy than they were before (lights! white toilets!) but also 100% more MacGyvered. I tried to take the roll of toilet paper off in order to put it back in the correct orientation and the entire toilet paper rack broke off the wall in my hand. A framed retro print of a Hulk comic book cover hung lopsided on the wall as if to mock me.

We opted out of the extended restaurant week menu just because we’re trying to recover from eating a little [a lot] too much last weekend, but we did spring for the pork belly appetizer. It took FOREVER. And then it arrived one minute before our entrees. And then our server apologized because the chef was really busy.

There were three other people in the restaurant. But okay.

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The pork belly itself was maybe a little overcooked–crispy to the point of slightly chewy. It was really good with bok choy and pineapple to cut the fattiness. The sauce was sweet and kind of overwhelmed the meat but in general it was tasty.

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I had the crab and avocado salad. I don’t know what I was expecting, but I feel kind of stupid for whatever I was thinking because this plate delivered crab. And avocado. In no shortage. The dressing was tart and fruity, and although my husband complained that it was just too seafoody, I really liked it. Arugula makes me happy too. It was large enough to be an entree, even if I hadn’t eaten that pork belly.

And speaking of large, here’s my husband’s beef rib, which I feel kind of bad about talking him into ordering:

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I mean, this rib was comically large, like the ones Fred Flintstone orders at the drive-in. The meat immediately separated from the bone when my husband pulled at it, and released a rib that looked like the ones we buy our pitbulls every year for Christmas. The meat was rich and smoky and served on top of another heinously large helping of mashed potatoes. Maybe this is what inspired the portrait of Hulk in the bathroom. The corn salad and fried onions were both delicious but there were too many onions and too little corn, so in general it was just a big plate of heart attack. Delicious, delicious heart attack.

Price: $40 per person.

Bottom line: I am surprisingly impressed with the food at Seasons and Sessions (less so with their bathroom decor and whoever kept hanging the toilet paper roll in an “under” orientation). I hope that the chef’s time management issues are just growing pains.

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