As befits a restaurant named “Vintage,” there’s a long wine list, with 30 wines by the glass. All of the entrées come with a suggested pairing, which we took advantage of, ordering the recommended 2006 Trinchero Family pinot noir ($10 glass /$42 bottle) with the Cornish hen. It was solid, with plenty of fruit and even a little structure. As often happens at wine festivals, the wine at Vintage is actually more exciting than the food. Decaf coffee ($3) is Illy, a top-shelf brand, but was apparently left on the warmer too long and tasted burnt. Teas ($3) are served as a metal pot of hot water with a tray of choices. Choose quickly and it will brew up decently.
You’ll either want to skip dessert altogether or use this course to pig out. Why the weird advice? I was a little concerned that we weren’t instructed to order in advance the chocolate soufflé ($10) — that’s because it was served warm and, well, uh, kinda sorta unbaked. On the other hand, raisin brioche bread pudding ($8) had no custard and no sauce, so it was dry and a little burnt on the edges. The unbaked soufflé was an excellent sauce for the dried-out bread pudding, however, making the pair a winning dessert for gluttons. Dieting couples splitting one or the other would miss out.
Vintage Lounge may not always deliver the food of an expensive downtown restaurant. Certainly, it has the look: linen tablecloths, an unusual flatware pattern, yellow and gold curtains, and lots of windows. Although my dinner was not entirely successful, and you may have to bring your own bottle of quinine tonic, there’s quite a lot to make this a useful destination in a fringe neighborhood: late hours, lunch, and entertainment in the bar. Start with the wine and order simple food (or both desserts), and it could be okay.
Robert Nadeau can be reached atRobtNadeau@aol.com.