I’ve been wanting to go to Jonny V’s for a while. The menu looked great and the chef is supposed to be wonderful. The inside of the restaurant is absolutely gorgeous, but it was so beautiful outside that we couldn’t pass up a patio table.
We started with a complimentary amuse bouche of garlic bread with a goat cheese spread and a small cup of smoked tomato bisque. The chef, a “diehard fan of cheese”, offers an extensive cheese menu featuring over 40 cheeses from all over the world. We chose a goat cheese, manchego, and Parmesan reggiano served with crostini, balsamic-marinated grapes, spiced pecans, and roasted garlic marinated olives. The cheese plate was the highlight of the night and we almost tackled the waiter when he tried to take it away. Sitting on the patio, we people-watched and poured over the cheese list while waiting for the food. The salad was a salad. Anything with goat cheese is A-OK in my book, but the spiced pecans seemed a tad redundant since we had just eaten a cup full of them off the cheese plate.
I tried a bite of the scallops, which were giant, perfectly cooked, and probably some of the best I’ve ever had. I also tried the salmon, which was crispy and flaky. It came with a spinach and potato gratin so delicious I would have been happy with it as my entrée. Everyone seemed to enjoy their dish. Except me. I can still taste the lingering blandness of the short ribs. This was quite possibly the grossest thing I have ever eaten. It was a huge portion of tasteless, fatty meat that was visibly crying out for salt and pepper, served on a lump of even more tasteless goat cheese mashed potatoes. I was actually surprised how bad it was and I mourned for the goat cheese. I’m not sure if I’m too picky, or that I just have bad restaurant luck. I’m pretty sure it’s the latter because that meat was inexcusable. The onion rings were large and crispy, and I imagine the brussel sprouts were good, but I was completely turned off from the food and couldn’t finish my entrée. So I sipped on my top-shelf margarita, which was delicious.
Next, dessert. We ordered the chocolate sampler and a trio of cupcakes: red velvet, tres leches, and strawberry. The restaurant apparantly kept the desserts waiting in the fridge, or freezer more likely, because by the time we got them, everything was frozen. The cakes were like little crumbly softballs, the frosting fell off in clumps because it was too hard, and the chocolate cake was so frozen it was practically inedible. Even my dad, who will eat a chocolate-covered leather shoe, didn’t understand why the desserts were served like that. However, the tres leches cake somehow managed to finagle itself away from the wrath of freezer burn because it was super moist and soft. The 5 of us fought over this poor little cupcake. We suggested to our waiter to serve the desserts room temperature, and he looked at us as if we had solved the equation for Pi. Room temp chocolate, what a concept.
I had high expectations for Jonny V’s, but it didn’t measure up. The scallops and cheese plate were fantastic, but my entrée was so awful it put a damper on the whole meal. For such an expensive, well-known restaurant, someone should have the sense to keep the dessert tray out of the freezer and toss a pinch (or two) of salt into the short rib pot. Luckily, I had great company. If you find yourself on Las Olas, try Big City Tavern, Sushi Rock, or Noodles Panini instead. Or, if you have a hankering for short ribs, save yourself $42 and buy a McRib.
- Tapas Sharing Platter: Roasted Garlic Marinated Olives, Balsamic-marinated grapes, Spicy pecans, Mahon, Manchego, Cabrales and Idiazabel Cheeses, Red Hot Tomatoes and Crispy bread
- Wild Baby Greens and Roasted Beets: Melon, Jicama, Spiced Pecans, Whipped Goat Cheese, Fig Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Grilled Whole Local Yellowtail Snapper: De-boned, Grilled Vegetables, Roasted Fingerling Potatoes, Fresh Basil, Citrus Sauce
Seasonal BBQ Glazed Wild Salmon:
Spinach and Potato Gratin, Asparagus, Apple Caramelized Onion Chutney
- Braised Boneless Beef Short Rib: Whipped Drunken Goat Cheese Potatoes, Indiana Dan’s Famous Onion Rings, Brussel Sprout Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette, Creamed Corn, Natural Demi Glace
- Chocolate Sampler: Double Chocolate Ice Cream Sandwich, Butterscotch Fudge Brownie, Chocolate Pudding with Biscotti, Chocolate Fudge Cake