Friday, October 24, 2008

Restaurant Review: JCT's fall menu

I've professed my love for JCT before, so it came as no surprise to me that the new prix fixe fall is superb. At $29 for 3-courses plus a cocktail, it is simply one of the best values in town!

Check out the current Tuesday night prix fixe menu here. The menu will change weekly, and the offer ends November 25. In addition to getting a ton of ridiculously tasty and refined southern grub, you'll also be entertained after dinner on the rooftop bar by the Junction Sessions. Local talent will perform, and there are drink specials. Granted this week is a bit chilly, but I can't imagine many nicer ways to spend a Tuesday night than having a great meal and relaxing to live music under a fall sky.

I was lucky enough to attend a preview there recently to test out some of their signature dishes for fall. Chef Ford Fry proved with each course that he knows how to make Southern cuisine interesting by using the freshest seasonal ingredients and putting a high-end twist on classic recipes.
Passed appetizers included deviled eggs and JCT's famous truffle fries. I don't think of myself as a deviled egg fan, and yet I ate two of these bad boys. And what's not to love about truffled anything? With dinner, we started with sweet corn and Georgia goat cheese agnolotti with parmesan and brown butter veal jus. Wow, what a dish! I love fall pastas that take advantage of sweet and savory, and this recipe did it to perfection.
Next up was a "Cracker Jack" salad with country ham and bleu cheese. Yes, this really includes the same cracker jacks you ate as a kid. And surprisingly it actually works.
Benton's bacon wrapped sea scallops and all night braised short ribs were both hearty and so yummy. It's like the food mom used to make only 10-times better and with more interesting ingredients. Can't say either was an especially original take on the dishes that are so prevalent on menus across town, but who cares when it's this tasty? I did, however, think that the apples added to the short rib dish provided an unexpected dose of sweetness and crunch. I'm a sucker for cooking with fruit I suppose.
Dessert was so heavenly that even after four big honking courses of rich food (and wine pairings!), I found room to devour every last bite. It was a warm brown butter and banana almond cake with white chocolate and maple creme fraiche ice cream. Can't say I've ever had anything like this before, and oh good lord, I wish I could. Just the notion of combining bananas and chocolate is good enough, but all of the other elements just heightened the experience. A very successful dish indeed!
The current prix fixe menu includes the pasta and a variation on that unbelievable dessert, and the pasta, salad, and both entrees appear on the regular menu. I can't say enough good things about JCT. Don't miss out on this awesome fall deal!

1198 Howell Mill Rd NW
Atlanta, GA 30318

JCT Kitchen on Urbanspoon



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