Though your eye may wander, there is little chance you will regret whatever you order.
Salar, 410 E. Fifth St., Dayton, and nearly 50 other restaurants are participating in the Miami Valley Restaurant Association’s 2013 Summer Restaurant Week through Sunday.
Each offers three-course meals and meal deals for $20.13, $25.13 and/or $30.13.
Click here to view an interactive map of restaurant week locations with articles, videos and other information.
During our recent Restaurant Week stop, we branched out and tried something new.
That wasn’t hard.
The restaurant, led by General Manager Harry Trubounis and Executive Chef Margot Blondet, a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu in Lima, Perú, who also trained in Italy and France, opened in May.
I went with the Beef Huancaina Lasagna — house made lasagna with sautéed onions, seared beef tenderloin and yellow Peruvian pepper bechamel, topped with mozzarella and shaved Parmesan cheese. It is one of a whopping five entrees — the crispy pork belly and a vegetarian fried eggplant lasagna included — on the $25.13 three-course menu.
My companion ordered the sole filet — a broiled sole filet topped with a Parmesan, sweet yellow onion, creamy crust over Champagne sauce accompanied by sautéed spinach and mashed potatoes.
That dish is one of three Salar offers that’s on the $20.13 menu.
While I followed the pork belly with my eyes as it was served to other diners, my beef lasagna won me over.
Thick noodles, rich and cheesy Huancaina sauce and chunks of beef tenderloin combined for a taste treat that was just as savory as a pot pie.
It followed the appetizer I selected, shrimp wonton triangles with a spicy passion fruit sauce for dipping that nearly showed up the wontons.
To drink, I went with the La Pasion, a fruity Bulliet bourbon and port cocktail kicked up a notch with chipotle chili powder. It would be a Bloody Mary if a Bloody Mary were fruity, light and refreshing.
The sauce on the sole filet brought out that meal. The potatoes were a great backup singer.
For his appetizer, my companion tried the Mussels Chalaca. Served cold, these big green guys tasted like ceviche. They come topped with onions, chiles, cilantro and a delicious corn citrus relish. He washed it all down with a Gem City Sling - Hendrick’s gin, chartreuse, cane sugar syrup, lemon juice taragon and, wait on it, absinthe.
The absinthe’s licorice-like flavor shines through in the handmade cocktail created by Brian Van Flandern, a master mixologist. It is one of eight, La Pasion included, sold on the restaurant’s regular menu for $9.75.
The third course dessert picks knocked it out of the park.
I tried the Passion Fruit Tres Leches (three milks cake) while my companion went with the Chocolate Shades, a white and dark chocolate mousse cake.
Although I enjoyed my sponge cake, my companion’s decadent chocolate cake ushered in a return of food envy.
Restaurant Week Details:
Salar Restaurant and Lounge, 400-410 E. Fifth St., Dayton, (937) 203-3999
Promises: “exciting menu of World-Fusion cuisine with strong French, Peruvian, and Mediterranean influences.”
Where are you dining during Restaurant Week? Let us know about your favorite places below.
Contact this columnist at arobinson@DaytonDailyNews.com or Twitter.com/DDNSmartMouth