Marché is a rather fancy and sophisticated restaurant in Eugene, at the 5th Street area/one of the Areas Of Deliciousness. The polar opposite of the bus-your-own-table, get-your-own-tepid-water establishments, it’s one of those restaurants that you dress up for. That you must make reservations for. That, in essence, the preparation is never fun at. However, the food is often quite delicious. Unfortunately, it’s often made fun of for the rather pompous, dim lighting, high prices, “THIS FOOD IS OUT OF YOUR LEAGUE, COMMONER” attitude of the restaurant. Yesterday, I decided to give it a try,
Yesterday, as you may know, was the Chef’s Night Out event. I love this event. This event is brilliant. But, because online prices for tickets were higher than at-the-door prices, we decided to bargain coming and buying the tickets at the door, and if we couldn’t get them, Fate didn’t want us to. Well, Fate didn’t want us to. The tickets were sold out. So instead, we decided to go to Marché. And it was a good decision.
We didn’t have to make a reservation, because everyone was at the Chef’s Night Out, which was rather handy. We were seated right away, and ordered the crab cakes, the foie gras duo, a blood orange soda, a beet salad, bouillabaisse, and chicken. The wait was pretty long, for a not-so-packed house, but that was okay, because Dad and I talked about the new season of Doctor Who. (In summation: SQUEE!!!11!!.)
The crab cakes and foie gras duo came, but we ate them too fast to take pictures. (sorry!) The crab cakes were delicious, a good blend of breadcrumbs, spices, and crab, but a little bit heavy. They came with a mustard which went well with the cakes, and a little salad which helped cut the heaviness. Of course, the foie gras was heavier. A lot heavier. Dad at least admitted that he only ordered it for the controversy and that sort of ‘try it before it’s banned’ idea. I didn’t like the non-cooked one, which tasted like butter, except creamier and more filling. Why not just eat a stick of butter? (It’s probably healthier, too!) The cooked one tasted meatier, and was good, but any pan-fried meat would be the same.
The beet salad with toasted hazelnut goat cheese arrived, and it was quite, quite delicious. Note to self, always put hazelnuts in goat cheese. Again, it was very rich, but worth it. The beets were quite good too. The lettuce was a bit extraneous, and the vinaigrette was very light, so it wasn’t very noticeable. It would probably taste just as good without the lettuce.
Even later (after more collective squeeing) the bouillabaisse and chicken came. I ate my chicken too fast to take a picture, but it was very, very scrumptious, et cetera, as usual. Buttery (but not too buttery) and just old-fashioned yum, it came with another rich sauce and some herb dumplings. It was basically really, really good chicken and dumplings. For fancy people.
I didn’t have much of the bouillabaisse, but Dad liked it. He didn’t, however, like the portion size. Rather unfair for the price ($28-ish).
Afterward, naturally, we had dessert. The best thing about Marché, in my opinion, is the desserts. We had apple-rhubarb crisp and chocolate cake with mint ice cream.
We had to take the picture, but I wanted to eat:
And it was for good reason, because the desserts were as fantastic as they looked. (Which is better than what it looks like here, darn phone camera quality) The chocolate was nothing interesting, but a very solidly delicious chocolate cake. Same went for the rhubarb-apple crisp. Just tasted great, and there didn’t have to be any kumquat-balsamic-bacon syrup on top (not that I don’t like that approach sometimes, but other times it’s nice to have delicious and simple).
In conclusion, Marché is a delicious, et cetera restaurant, though sometimes a bit too rich for our palates (and budgets). Just like when I was younger, the desserts are my favorite part for their simple, solid deliciousness.