May 3, 2007

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New eats in bloom
Restaurants revitalize menus for spring
By Susan Reilly Ware  news@hippopress.com

Fish go south
South American flavors at Commercial Street Fishery

At the Commercial Street Fishery, chef Justin Lyonnais has changed the menu three times in the past year.

Driven by freshness, availability and his whim. But changing the menu is tough to do when a designer and printer need to get involved every time.

“The old style of menu made it tough to keep changing things up. Now we are doing them in house and people will see it constantly changing and evolving based on the seasons and what is available,” Lyonnais said.

Lyonnias has just put out a menu that he feels is perfect for warm-weather dining.

“I can’t really label the menu. I think it is fun, it eats light and it screams spring,” Lyonnais said.

Lyonnais has added flavors from South America and the Caribbean to the mix. The combination of ginger and sweet potatoes appears twice on the menu, as fries with the small plate of sweet and spicy short ribs ($12) and with the pink pepper yellow fin tuna ($27), where a ginger tomato confit escorts a sweet potato spring roll as the side dish.

More fusion — a small plate of PEI mussels ($9) gets dressed with coco lopez, sambal, cilantro and lime and Korean style shrimp ($22) is served with a ginger cilantro jasmine rice and a jicama mang slaw.

“The new menu has a global feel. I have paella from Spain along with local Chatham cod and Massachusetts clams,” Lyonnais said.

In terms of keeping things light, Lyonnais switched up orzo for mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes for Russets and even the hanger steak ($24) is getting an airy gorgonzola potato hash, a less heavy option in the warm months.

While fish is the focus at Commercial Street Fishery, there are a couple of well-executed plates that cater to the chicken and beef crowd.

There is the forementiond short ribs ($12), a balsamic grilled chicken breast ($19) served with a fresh mozzarella, and tomato lasagna with a calamata olive puree. Lyonnias says that the lasagna is very light, not a hefty chunk of oil-heavy pasta and cheese, mainly because it has no ricotta and it is made to order.

The grilled Hanger steak ($24) has been popular since the place opened.

“I put it on the first menu and haven’t looked back,” said Lyonnias. For spring this steak gets served with the hash, grilled asparagus and a tomato bourbom demi.

A French breakfast
The French Bistro adds brunch & new entrees

Zoltan Kosa is sprung about spring.

The French Bistro’s sunny patio has just been opened along with the quaint, walk-up ice cream shop. Sunday brunch, new at The French Bistro, has come to life and chef Kosa has even put out a new menu with a focus on lighter spring flavors.

“It is a very exciting time right now. The weather is warm and everything that we have going on reflects all of these changes,” Kosa said.

Kosa explained that loyal customers have long been requesting a Sunday brunch. At its debut last week, brunch had more reservations than the Saturday evening prior.

“We are really looking forward to brunch. It is so great to stretch,” Kosa said.

There is a three-course brunch, the cost based on the entrée you choose: French toast with a pineapple-walnut compote ($14.95), pancake with maple syrup and crème fraiche ($14.95), Hanger steak with grits, an egg any style and maple pork sausage ($18.95) and salmon with spinach salad, pickled onion and tomato ($18.95).

Along with your entrée, you choose appetizers such as French onion soup gratinee, house-cured salmon or duck rillette with frisee. Your meal comes with a basket full of crossaints, baguette and jam and choice of homemade desserts such as vanilla crème brulee, Key Lime pie and the crepe of the day.
The French chef has also put together a menu of classic egg dishes, such as eggs Benedict, eggs Cocotte, poached eggs with crab hash and Maltaise sauce and an omelet with ham mushroom and chive.

The bistro’s dinner menu got a spring lift with the addition of many light dishes and the subtraction of heavy braised meals. Spring peas get the star treatment in the St. Jacques Poelees ($21.95), which is scallops with pea Cavatelli, radish, carrots and a pea sauce. Asparagus gets paired with langoustine in the Lagoustine aux Asperges starter ($11.95).

Hit The Deck
Derryfield offers dining and fresh air

If you’ve spent any time in Manchester, it is likely that you have sipped cold drinks and noshed on appetizers on the deck at The Derryfield Restaurant.

Overlooking the 6th fairway, The Deck — as locals call it — has been the summer place to see and be seen for years. A makeover in late 2005 brought more space (pictured above in a photo courtesy of the Derryfield) and a highly functional center bar. Today, the menu has been vamped up and the deck and adjacent restaurant is going strong.

“The deck here at the Derryfield is so popular because it really has the best scenery round, a fun, lively atmosphere and great food,” said manager Jeff Plamondon.

The golf course is owned by the city of Manchester, and the restaurant is co-owned by Billy LeBerge, of Billy’s Sports Bar, and Mike Lanoie.

The Derryfield’s menu covers everything from quick snacks to hot entrees. A bargain dinner special runs Sunday through Thursday offering dinner for two (total cost: $13.95) and you have a choice of eight entrees and a salad.

The menu is presented in a cork binder and it is huge. The Derryfield has struck the fine balance between country club favorites, pub snacks and hearty New England meals.

For starters, look for a crab dip ($7.95) made with lump crab meat and cheeses and served with pita points and a sliced baguette; spicy quesadillas ($7.95) in chicken or beef with all the fixins’; and ahi seared tuna with sesame ($7.95). The Derryfield is known for its nachos — regular ($7.95) and the ultimate ($8.75).

There is a selection of soups and salads, including a Caesar ($5.95) or with grilled chicken ($8.25) or steak tips ($9.25) and chili ($4.95) topped with jack cheese and served with tortilla chips. For sandwiches, look for a Rueben ($6.50), French dip ($8.95), hot pastrami ($5.50) and The Greens Keeper ($6.95) a treat  made of a grilled chicken breast with Swiss cheese, roasted red pepper and prosciutto. Beef burgers are 8 ounces here and include the popular, low-cholesterol  bison burger ($6.95).

The owners, along with the kitchen have put together an entrée menu that is full of classics, like chicken picatta ($13.95), chicken marsala (13.95), pork tenderloin ($16.95) or marinated steak tips ($13.95). There is a 16 ounce cut of prime rib ($18.95) on Fridays and Saturdays until it is gone and fish choices like grilled swordfish ($16.95) with a cracked pepper Boursin sauce and a pan seared haddock ($13.95) served topped with a crab veloute.


Commercial Street Fishery
33 S. Commercial St., Manchester, 296-0706

The French Bistro
15 Elm St., Milford, 249-9605,
www.thefrenchbistro.com

The Derryfield Restaurant & Lounge
625 Mammoth Road, Manchester, 623-2880,
www.thederryfield.com.


4/26/2007 Pho sure

4/19/2007 Cakes, cow-free
4/12/2007 Serving up the first square
4/5/2007 More than just a chocolate bunny
3/29/2007 New 'nuches
3/22/2007 A taste of genuine sweetness
3/15/2007 From homemade to home business
3/8/2007 Shop the farmers' market year round
3/1/2007 Feeding Mama Kicks
2/22/2007 Keepers of the vino
2/15/2007 Noodly comfort food
2/8/2007 The luxury of osso bucco
2/1/2007 Super platters for the Super Bowl
1/25/2007 It's a wrap
1/18/2007 The writing foodie
1/11/2007 Where the beef is, piled high and hot
1/04/2007 The healthy foodie
12/28/2006 The return of pasta and fall of the diet: the year in eats
12/21/2006 Organic on the ice
12/14/2006 French but not fussy
12/07/2006 Southeast U.S. culture, in sandwich form
11/30/2006 Bites of comfort with chips of happiness
11/23/2006 Cityside adds class to conveniece
11/16/2006 Easier-to-enjoy Thanksgiving feasts
11/9/2006 The new classic
10/26/2006 Whip up a quiche
10/19/2006 A new way to crepe
10/12/2006 Comfort food for blokes and birds
10/05/2006 Smaller crop but still red and delicious
09/28/2006 The crunchier, lighter, healthier wrap
09/21/2006 City bagels in suburbia
09/14/2006 Cracking the custard code
09/07/2006 Eat your way down the block
08/31/2006 New flavors for an old summer dish
08/24/2006 Way down south in Hollis
08/17/2006 Frappe vs. milkshake
08/10/2006 Enjoy the bluest month
08/03/2006 Death of Toro
07/27/2006 Vacation on a plate
07/20/2006 Hitting barbecue big time
07/13/2006 Relishing the raspberry
07/06/2006 Are your edible souveneirs kosher?
06/29/2006 Fish, upscale
06/22/2006 Sweet rosey taste of summer
06/15/2006 When to pull out the EVOO
06/08/2006 What can you grill?
06/01/2006 Taste of downtown Nashua
05/25/2006 Deulge at farms
05/18/2006 Adorable and delicious
05/11/2006 Rub down
05/04/2006 Pinot to go
04/27/2006 A bit Italian, a bit egg foo young
04/20/2006 Meatier than breakfast...
04/13/2006 Let yourself eat cake
04/06/2006 Fear not the Risotto
03/30/2006 Making Friday a fishy delight
03/23/2006 The Thin Mints are here
03/16/2006 Divining your personality from pizza
03/09/2006 Cooking up a big bowl of comfort
03/02/2006 Dumplings demystified
02/23/2006 Carbs and comfort all the way
02/16/2006 She sells sushi by the sea shore
2/09/2006 Biting into the burger with bling
02/02/2006 Forget formal dining, head to the bar
01/26/2006 Goodbye rooster, hello year of the dog
01/19/2006 The secret lives of chefs
01/12/2006 Cooking up a pot of delayed gratification
01/05/2006 A sunny Italian side dish
A year of eats

All-you-can-read guide to breakfast
A bagel by any other l
abel
A picnic — it’s romance with ants
A sweet burst of summer, in stages
Beef, It's What's For Dinner, Lunch, And Dessert
Be it ever so humble, the burger rules
Blockbuster snacks for your movie
Box Of Chocolates
C Is For Cookie And Christmas And Cool Combo
Celebrating A Holiday For The Rest Of Us
Celebrate Easter In A Sugar Coma
Chat And Chew

Chinese soup is magic
Chocolate cake makes everything better
Chocolate, Part II
Competition flows like chocolate
Corn Flake Chicken, Honeycomb Salad
Dining at the "Your House Bistro"
Don't Dread The Bread
Dress Up Your Next Meal
Drinking Out Of The Box
Eating Your Way Back To Health
Empanadas
Enter Soup
Experiments With Very Bad Brownies
Feeding A Crowd The Morning After
Follow the cider house rules
Fresh Herbs
Go ahead — run silent, run deep
Goodbye corn syrup, hello organic oatmeal
Go Indian for Thanksgiving
Grilled Cheese Junkie

Halloween candy for grown-ups
Have a Happy Meal and a happier wallet
Holiday Cookies - The Easy Way
Holiday Potluck 101-Tips For The Kitchen Novice
Home-Based Date
How do you like them apples?
In-A-Pinch Love Feast
It's not easy to be cheesy
It’s not Christmas without tamales
Lest We Forget The Humble Squash
Keeping your cool while you eat
Living through your salad days

Looking Beyond The Hot Dog Stand
Lunching your way to a less toxic you
Meat's meat and a man's gotta eat

Moist and delicious chicken — no, really
Oatmeal Cookies, The Miracle Cure
Oscar Night, When The Stars Come Out To Eat

Offering Up A Slice Of Teriyaki Pie
Pot Pies Are Darn Tasty
Pumpkin-Flavored Treats
Small Plates Are The Next Big Thing
Speedy 'za not pie in the sky
Steak: it’s what’s for dinner, again
Summer coolers, just add sunlight
Summer Squash
Super Bowl Grub
Take A Walk On The Dark Side
Taste of Manchester Event
The Cosmopolitan
The joys of a simple oatmeal breakfast
The return of comfort food
The One-Note Cook Book
The New American Plate Cookbook
The Stickiest, Hottest & Sweetest Of Love's Labors
The taste of retro
The Unheralded Peanut Butter Cookies
The union of sweet and heat
The Weekly Dish (12-16-04)
The Weekly Dish (12-23-04)

The Weekly Dish [1-13-05]
There's a Barbecue Bonanza Next Door
Week Four: Adding Diet To The Mix
What Was Hot And Haute In 2004
When $$ trumps urge to dine out
When in doubt, go for the organic
When nothing else will cool, Slurp it
You Say Potato, She'll Say Potato,Too
You say tomato, writer says lunch