Returning to your roots can be a joyous homecoming: mom still makes your favorite meal, you can still kick your bro's ass in ping pong, and now, you actually get to leave. For a resto that's a kind of homecoming for the chef, get to The Grill at The Setai.
From a French-trained foodsmith with a James Beard award and a two-Michelin-star rating who's been helming the Setai's pan-Asian main restaurant for over two years, The Grill's a return to grub inspired by his beloved Southern Europe, and feels like a back room nobody knows about; it's got high latticed ceilings up front and a shadowy rear area, all done in earthy wood, stone, and leather, with a massive mother of pearl communal table, and a food bar lined with ham hocks -- a dream for you, a nightmare for Kermit. The menu's organized by small/medium/large plates for tapas-style grazing, with little guys repped by escabeche of sardines with tomato sorbet & basil oil; Olympia oysters w/ cucumber caviar, green apple & tarragon; and house-made pickled goods alongside charcuteries like saucisson sec, rosette de Lyon, and 36-month Iberian ham served with onion jam -- also the lesser-known tear-jerker alternative band from Seattle. Mid-sized plates take the form of seared tuna belly w/ sweet shallot puree & black currant eucalyptus vinaigrette, or seared foie gras with rhubarb & hibiscus, while larger offerings include salted cod w/ pork belly, baby squid, chorizo & chickpeas, or a 1.5lb whole yellowtail snapper with a bouillabaisse sauce, baked in salt, which worked out considerably better than the time you tried it freshman year.
Drinks filter in from the Setai's brand new cocktail menu, and include acrobatic flavor combos like the Asian Picnic (smoked pork belly-infused Jack, chile syrup, compressed watermelon, shiso), and one with Gran Sierpe Pisco, grapes, basil, Domain de Canton, and ginger beer called the Buddha's Delight, which almost certainly refers to the time after he graduated from college, and nobody could say nothing about him banging girls at home.