We were staying at the Eliot Hotel so it seemed like a no brainer to either eat at Clio or Uni. Unfortunately when we went down for dinner, there were no seats at the bar at Uni (only 6 seats total) so we kept our reservation at Clio.
We ordered champagne and decided to order splits – one for two.
Amuse – Tomato water martini, diced cucumber, basil oil, caperberry, huckleberry, tomato popsicle – OK
Taylor Bay Scallops, Winterberrry verjus, fresh wasabi, oscetra caviar – this was served family style, but with no extra plates. We asked for small plates so we didn’t spill the verjus all over the table. Excellent
Now we waited and waited for food.
Marinated Yellowtail and Yellow Fin Tuna with Opal Basil, Ginger and Garlic – Again this was served family style with no extra plates – we again asked for extra plates plus some silverware.
After finishing the above dish, the busser scrapes our plates at the table – table side service? – fine dining??
Now our server pours more champagne for me and manages to spill champagne all over the table as she overfilled the glass. She immediately leaves to wipe her hands, but forgets about the mess on the table and my wet slippery glass.
I could see that this was becoming a disastrous dining experience. I left the table, went to Uni, saw 2 empty seats at the bar at Uni and begged those already at the bar to save those seats. I ran back to John, said meet me at Uni and quickly claimed our seats. John told the maitre d’ we were leaving to go eat at Uni. He said nothing, just shrugged his shoulders.
What followed was a very good meal with great service and equally great company.
My notes are a mess – it has been some time since this meal and we were both deep in conversation with our tablemates. We asked the chef to just do omakase – his choice. Some photos are missing so even letting the photos tell the story is incomplete. I apologize in advance for any and all mistakes.
Uni spoon with quail egg, oscetra caviar, chives- delicious
Toro, soy, yuzu, pluot
Hamachi, Ginger Mignonette, Green Apple, Swish of Cassis
Columbia River salmon
Smoked Chutoro, Porcini mushrooms, Wagyu Steak, Soy, Wagyu beef fat
Amaidai, Spicy Vinaigrette, Chardonnay gelee
Homemade Tofu, Uni, Oscetra Caviar
Uni, Chilled Gazpacho and…
Torched Tomato, Clam, Cauliflower Puree, Celery, Crunchy shallots and garlic, Togarashi
Spicy Lobster Salad, Orange, Shiso
This was an excellent meal and compared to Clio wondrous. It is not Urasawa and the quality of the fish is definitely not like Hiro’s, but it was a fun evening with wonderful company on either side of us. It also is quite expensive, about $300 for the two of us.
As we were paying, the maitre d’ from Clio came to Uni and presented us with our check from Clio. The next morning, John complained to the GM of the hotel, a wonderful woman, Pascale Schlaefli, who upon hearing of our experience at Clio deducted that amount from our bill.