Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Knife and Fork Inn, Atlantic City

Want a superbly competent waitstaff? Beautiful and historic surroundings? Delicious food? Extensive wine list? Then, my friends, it seems that you want to go to The Knife and Fork Inn in Atlantic City. Swoon. It's all of this and more! Plus, it has a rich history... it was a speak easy during prohibition, and a gentleman's club afterwards. Then they turned into into a restaurant and it's been well loved and well received ever since. We made a recent trek with DY&IK during their weekend visit to the shore house. I love when foodie friends come to visit :)

IK started off with an appetizer off of the specials menu... a crab and avocado terrine. It was good, but not spectacular, and here is why. Summer time crab is so delicious and sweet and suculent on it's own that it would be the perfect compliment to mild and creamy avocado without assistance from any 'enhancers'. The chef apparently did not think this was the case and tossed the crab with some seasoned mayonaise... completely unnecessary. It made the whole thing a bit too wet, and way too creamy. It was tasty, of course (how can crab, mayo, and avocado not be?) but too heavy. Good but not our favorite.

DY went with oysters. Nothing much to report. They were seasonal, fresh and delicious. Came with a jalapeno and citrus dipping sauce that was delicious but not needed.... nothing (to me at least!) beats the briney bite of an in season oyster... no horseradish, no cocktail sauce, no nada. Just me, oyster, and face. Done.

Matt has gotten adventurous, people. He ordered (hand to God) the softshell crab. This was done as almost a tempura, over top of a thai inspired coconut milk and pepper mixture. This was AMAZING. So much flavor. I love thai food for it's always happy combination of spicy, sweet, salty and bitter and this had each compenent in the perfect way. Sweet coconut milk, hot chilis, slightly salty softshell crab.. it was a treat. The crab was cooked to perfection, crunchy on the outside but giving way to sweet delicious meat on the inside. I love the snap of a properly cooked softshell crab. This was a serious treat. Sadly it was a special.... soooo.... yeah.

I went with the confit duck leg salad. Holy crap. This was amazing. Seriously succulent duck, cooked in it's own fat atop a bed of leafy greens in a dressing comprised of bacon, ducky drippings and vinegar? Yeah... don't mind if I do. Salty, crunchy, earthy, delicious. The duck leg was huge, too! I could have easily had this and a cup of soup and called it an evening.

Both DY and Matt went with steaks.... DY with the monster of the menu, the 18oz cowboy steak, Matt with the tamer but still giant 16oz sirloin steak. Both were cooked to absolute perfection with a delicious crust and a tender inside. Matt had been dreaming of steak at Knife and Fork Inn since our first visit, years ago, and knew what he was going to get months in advance. According to him it's one of the best steaks he has ever had, and they didn't dissapoint on this visit, either. DY seemed happy too, as his plate was completely cleaned and meat free by the end of the meal.

IK went with one of the dinner specials, a fluke fillet perched upon a bevy of sliced zuchinni and topped with roasted cherry tomatoes. It was light, summery, and completely season appropriate. The fish was really fresh and IK really enjoyed it. Personally I thought it was a bit bland, but I just never considered fluke a 'go to' fish for full flavor. Who knows, maybe its just me. Long story short, the person eating it was happy, it was cooked well and looked nice. The end.

My dinner was an absolute treat. Better than I ever remembered from any of my previous visits. I went with the crab cake, and this is the one that I have always used and will continue to use as my golden standard. Huge, giant hunks of jumpo lump crab meat packed into a towering cake, with litte, if any, filling sitting pretty surrounded by spicy Asian slaw and red pepper sauce. It's perfect. You get all crab and no BS bready smoosh nonsense. The slaw gives crunch, should you want it, but I was so focused on the delicious crustacean that it took me a while to remember to dip into the veg. So good. So very very good.
Too full for dessert (although they have an amazing confection refered to as a banana chocolate burrito... if you like your taste buds order it) we rolled out and hit the boardwalk. Knife and Fork Inn is a little piece of history in downtown Atlantic City. It's absolutely stunning, has a pretty lively bar scene, and the service is impecable (friendly and knowledgeable without being overbearing or creepy... good combo!)

Knife and Fork Inn
Atlantic and Pacific Avenue-08401
609 344 1133

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the recommendation! I'm looking at a lot of Atlantic City hotels for a trip I plan on making soon and I'll consider this. Thanks again!