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“Inventive, outstanding fine dining!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of State & Lemp

State & Lemp
2870 W. State Street, Boise, ID 83702
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Ranked #16 of 612 Restaurants in Boise
Price range: $50 - $50
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Lemp
Transit: Valley stop in front of building.
Top Contributor
79 reviews 79 reviews
51 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
“Inventive, outstanding fine dining!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2014

What an amazing experience we had. Called last minute and got lucky enough to get a reservation for two (seating is 22 for two seatings a night on weekends, I believe). It is a Prix-Fixe menu, and it's ingredients and combinations of flavors does stretch the imagination and the excite the palate!

As it is communal seating, you will have a lot of great conversation and maybe make a new friend who shares your love of good food.

Do not wait for a special occasion. This is a Foodie delight; you are worth the money you spend on this dining experience! This is the restaurant that we must patronize to ensure it is around for a long, long time! Boise rejoice, we have a Portland-worthy restaurant!

  • Visited May 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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24 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Boise, Idaho
Top Contributor
127 reviews 127 reviews
84 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 55 cities Reviews in 55 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
“Just perfect”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2013 via mobile

We came together with friends. It is definitely a different experience compared to eating at the regular restaurant. Everything is just perfect: food, service, quantity and quality of good and wines.
Wonderful experience , good luck to the owners and staff. Highly recommended
We will be back.

  • Visited December 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boise, Idaho
Top Contributor
371 reviews 371 reviews
208 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 171 cities Reviews in 171 cities
404 helpful votes 404 helpful votes
“Fine Prix-Fixe Dining; Reservations Required”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 14, 2013

One thing Boise has been lacking since the loss of Mortimer's is a place that does a tasting menu - a series of chef's choice selections with small portions designed to showcase the quality ingredients and the talents of the chef. Although Boise has some fine dining restaurants, there is little menu rotation....so State & Lemp is a lovely new concept for Boise. Menus change frequently, the goal is every three weeks. You make a reservation (Opentable or otherwise) - they can only accommodate about 24 people max - and dinner is served for everyone at the same time. The set price is currently $75 per person for food and wine pairings for an additional $30. Although the price is high, it is not too much to ask for a truly quality fine dining menu. However, for that price I expect a chef to be able to show me things with food that are new and interesting, to be able to play with texture, develop flavor, provide some unique pairings, give me food I can't make at home, and provide good presentation and service. Stat & Lemp did not disappoint.

As there is such limited space, going with some friends may be more comfortable than being so close to strangers...but as we did not know what to expect we just booked for two. They do the best they can with the limited space but the table is basically about 2 inches from the next one so it's very urban, more so than anyplace else in Boise. The exterior and interior of the restaurant are really well done and it is clear that a ton of time, energy, attention to detail (and no shortage of money) was spent on creating a small, exclusive dining place that is upscale yet comfortable and modern. Currently serving dinner W-Sat.

Service was excellent, with a busy staff that whisks away each course, explains each course, and pays attention to all the details so quietly you hardly notice - which is the best you can ask for anyplace in my opinion.

As the menu changes all the time, the details of the particular meal are not likely to be helpful to future diners - but it was clear that the chef can do some creative things with flavor and texture, and we both enjoyed the entire menu. As always some dishes were better than others but the first course was so excellent it rivaled any dish we'd had anywhere and made us decide that regardless of what followed, we'd be back to try more - because the chef has a lot of potential. There were elements of each course that were very good, even excellent - and even dessert was very good (so often a disappointment in a tasting menu). The menu is five courses not counting an amuse bouche. The wine pairings were a mix of local and imported with some nice selections.

The music levels and the small space made conversation a little bit challenging at times, but that was the only negative, I am happy to report. Overall you can tell that they are new, enthusiastic, paying attention to every detail, and really trying to make a prix-fixe concept work in Boise. If you have food allergies or special requests you need to call ahead and see if they can be accommodated. I inquired and they do plan to offer some vegetarian and vegan meals at some point and that would be REALLY awesome (I can't think of anything more impressive than a chef who can do a fabulous vegan menu).

The focus is on quality ingredients, local and organic...I actually heard about this place from some of the market vendors who provide the produce. I hope the word gets out and that the Treasure Valley is big enough to support this fabulous new venture for the long haul. Finally, a place to eat out in Boise and not get bored with the same old offerings. Great for a special occasion, but also a great place to gather with family or fellow foodies for a fabulous meal....the kind where everyone is talking about the details (those pickled mustard seeds...the carrot puree....etc). Enjoy!

  • Visited November 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
77 reviews 77 reviews
53 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Number 1 with a bullet- Truly Special”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

Recently opened in a transformed space on State street, State & Lemp sets a new bar for Boise cuisine. A different concept for Boise dining- a single prix fixe menu-you have to give yourself over to the experience. Service for about 20 in a single seating is done at a pair of tables so you get to meet new friends over your meal as well as share it with a companion. The facility, which has been many things over the years, has been uniquely renovated with repurposed items throughout. Service is attentive and impeccable. Food is both creative and accessible, Probably best described as contemporary American dining the focus is on local providers and seasonal foods. Hot parsnip soup with dumplings and fennel aint like nothing you get anywhere else. Scallops on a cauliflower puree, and rack of lamb with pistachios were some of the highlights of this menu. Boise restaurant quality has been improving greatly over the past couple of years and State & Lemp stands easily with the great Desert Sage and Andrae's as among the best dining the town has ever offered. Go here as often as you can, thats all I can say. Reservations are required and dont be surprised if, as word gets out, you have to plan for your evening.

  • Visited October 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boise, Idaho
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Boise's dining scene just went up a notch...or three”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2013

The past few years, there's been a lot of doom and gloom. Heartbreaking stories of lost jobs, businesses and homes. Perhaps that's what makes it all the more special when two guys go out on a limb and open not only a new restaurant, but a totally new concept to the Boise dining scene. Those two men are Rami McManus and Jay Henry and the restaurant is State & Lemp.

The concept is a set menu – one offering of a five course prix fixe menu. We made our reservation online, but shortly after Remi followed up with a phone call to confirm the reservation and also ask if there were any dietary restrictions that they could accommodate. My friend, while not religious about being gluten free prefers to limit it when possible, so that note was made.

The restaurant space is sort of a strange triangle shaped building on a busy road – State Street. It has been a multitude of things including a hot dog shop, a couple Mexican restaurants, and most recently a wine store. To say that they have transpired the space might be the understatement of the year. Long wiped away are the terra cotta tiles and yellow walls, replaced by warm gray tones and artistic touches everywhere from the Edison light bulbs on the ceiling to the original artwork throughout. There has been attention to detail all around. The gorgeous wood tables and chairs were made locally from salvaged wood. If you look closely, note that the grain continuously flows from one table to the next. There is a collection of sparkling lead glass pitchers and decanters all gathered from local thrift stores that have been given a second life. And once inside, you sort of don't feel like you're in Boise, let alone just feet from a busy thoroughfare.
We are greeted at the door, coats are taken and champagne presented to transition us from our day into the experience ahead. The restaurant is small – only seating maybe 20 or 24 people. We chatted with fellow diners before Rami rang a crystal bell and we all took our chairs. Currently there's only one seating a night at 6:30 pm and only four nights a week – Wednesday through Saturday. I believe they will add a second seating on weekend nights beginning in November.

Chef Jay has worked to forge relationships with many local farmers and purveyors. The menu will change every 2 to 3 weeks based on what is available and seasonal to Idaho and the Pacific Northwest.

An amuse bouche arrives on a small square plate. One bite of sweet potato chip and pickled chanterelle mushroom topped with grilled corn.

We had added the wine pairing menu to our meal so the first glass was poured – 2010 Maison Kuentz-Bas, Alsace “Tradition” Gewurztraminer – and a shallow dish with a few perfect dumplings arrived, the waiter pouring hot parsnip soup over the top tableside. If I knew parsnips could taste like this, I would have been eating far more of them. The soup was creamy, the dumplings pillowy and there was the lovely crunch of some fennel found at the bottom of the bowl.

The waitstaff is so smooth you almost don't realize when dishes come and go, water is refilled and wine poured.

Locally made potato bread with honey butter appears along with the next wine – 2012 Guild Winemakers, Columbia Valley White Wine – to accompany a beet & pear salad with goat cheese and an almond tuile (candied almonds for my gluten free friend). The dish is stunning and delightfully tastes as good as it looks.

The third course was a perfectly cooked scallop sitting on cauliflower puree with smoked sunchokes topped with pickled mustard seeds. If I didn't think it improper, I may have picked up the plate and licked it. The wine pairing for this course came from one of my favorite local wineries, Cinder – their 2012 “Dry” Viognier.

Next up rack of lamb from Meadowlark Farms in Nampa. It was accompanied by sous vide carrots, eggplant and chickpeas with a tangy roasted red pepper sauce. Our wine pairing for this course was 2011 Syncline Cellars, Columbia Valley Grenache. I chased the sauce around to soak it all up with my perfectly cooked meat.

Little crystal dessert wine glasses are placed in front of us – a collection of different sizes and shapes also scored from local thrift stores – and filled with 2011 Domaine de Durban, Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise. Soon after arrive the individual apple tart for me and a gluten free apple crisp for my dining companion, both served with housemade cinnamon ice cream. There was a smoked salted caramel sauce which again left me wishing that plate licking wasn't so inappropriate.

Is the restaurant expensive? Yes – at $75 for the dinner and an additional $30 for the wine pairing it's probably not somewhere I will go monthly. But is it worth it? Without a doubt. There is truly nothing like this on the Boise dining scene. If you love really beautiful food you should go see for yourself because State & Lemp doesn't disappoint.

  • Visited October 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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