A preview of the new spring menu at DOA.
Dirty Oscar’s Annex has had a lot of air time here at GCF in part because they’re so nice about inviting us to classy events such as this one (pinkie out), but it’s mostly due to their constantly evolving menu of fresh and unique dishes. The competition on 6th is intense with other fine eats like Crown bar and Asado (the finest menu on 6th will probably always belong to Marrow however), but Chef Aaron is doing his best to push his to new heights, and is firmly ahead of the bulk of those competitors.
A couple weeks ago we were invited, along with a number of other local media personalities, to a preview of the spring menu. The abbreviated menu showcased a number of bright and tangy vinegar-based dishes that are a very welcome springtime departure from the heavy and appropriately greasy bulk of the winter menu. It’s as if we’ve emerged from hibernation to find ourselves some spring fruits and flowers…served alongside a crisp IPA.
SPRING IS HERE
Chef Aaron started things off with a prosciutto roll stuffed with fresh chèvre cheese, crisped basil and julienned green apple. The classic fruit and cheese offset the saltiness of the prosciutto nicely, and the basil was a nice touch. Comparing this to a typical DOA app we see a serious increase in fresh ingredients and decrease in calories – I guess we are all looking to shed a couple winter pounds. This was certainly a stark contrast to my favorite DOA app, the candied bacon, which doesn’t do anyone’s love handles any favors.
Sticking with the fresh theme, Chef Aaron’s next course was a spring green salad showcasing some sharp citrus from a candied and grilled slice of tangerine and very bright mint vinaigrette served on top of a bed of fresh arugula. Again, very good, but the biggest thing I take away from this is the overt freshness that has been so sorely missed from menus past.
The first of two entree dishes was the star of the event. The Muffalatta sandwich was absolutely amazing. Home-smoked salami, ham, and mortadella (sausage) accompanied by peppered tomato and Havarti all atop an absolutely lovely bed of green olive tapenade. All this was served on a fresh focaccia roll. The balance on this could easily sway too far one way or the other, but tonight was incredible. Alongside the sandwich was a seemingly unassuming pile of potato salad dotted with cubed smoked ham that surprised the hell out of all of us. The best potato salad I’ve ever eaten. This is one side that hasn’t received gourmet treatment over the years, but absolutely succeeds for it. Unadulterated deliciousness. An absolutely perfect plate that I believe tops any burger combo offered here.
The second entree was the Tasso Taco, a reference to the fantastic crisped pork atop it. This was probably the biggest crowd pleaser, as oohs and aahs were audible around us. The taco featured a mound of slow roasted pork, cilantro, green chili cream and well chosen pickled radishes. The balance was thrown off by the pile of sweet pork, but this could easily be remedied by adding a few more of the radishes (honestly amazing) and chili sauce (also incredible). The spring menu may have shifted my taste buds a bit, but I wanted some fresh lime in there too. I’m such a demanding bastard sometimes.
The evening culminated with a super sweet dessert built around graham cracker dough (not my thing) and white chocolate cream (definitely my thing). Adam wanted to try the cream with some candied bacon – decadence to the max.
Was it good for you?
It’s spring people. Which means we’ll probably have a few winter relapses, but it’s time to turn in those elk sliders for some prosciutto and chèvre, opt for the Muffalatta instead of the Dead Elvis burger, and have an IPA or a Hef. Brighter days are ahead.
Mention us and get…nothing. Yet, but we’re working on it.Dirty Oscar’s Annex 2309 Sixth Ave., Tacoma