Aspire

By BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  January 29, 2009

But my appetite was less carnivorous than usual, so soon I was staring down at Maine lobster and shrimp over pappardelle pasta ($33). There were two succulent claws, plus most, if not all, of the tail, and a scattering of medium shrimp. As much of a treat was the black pepper cream sauce, speckled with scallions and quite tasty.

Johnnie didn't do badly either with her roasted root vegetable ravioli ($18). Spinach, butternut squash, and finger-sized carrots accompanied crunchy chopped vegetables inside the dense pillows. As with my wide ribbons of pasta, they were cooked with restraint and were delicious.

There are five kitchen-made desserts ($7), as well as an artisanal cheese platter. But once we saw that they offered bananas Foster for two ($12), there was no real choice. We would have enjoyed it even without the theatrical presentation at tableside, the banana disks sautûed in butter and flambûed in a flaming hiss of Meyer's dark rum and Bacardi 101, the concoction poured over a thin sheet of white cake and vanilla ice cream. We felt as well treated as the honeymooners in the penthouse suite.

Bill Rodriguez can be reached at bill@billrod.com.

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