Thank you for an excellent meal!!!!
We had a little trouble finding Santaella in the first place but that had much more to do with the driver (me) not following the GPS well enough not with where the restaurant was located. From the moment we walked in we were struck by the eclectic decor of the cozy dining area and the cool glass facade behind the ample bar area. The staff at Santaella were welcoming even as we had to downsize our party because of no-shows and immediately found us a smaller table than they had planned for.
The service we received from Juan Carlos was second to none throughout our meal. He immediately offered to decant our bottle of wine which we had to ask special for at other restaurants in the area and offered his personal recommendations on everything from the appetizers to the main courses and desserts. He was also very capable of providing in depth descriptions of the complex menu items and specials from memory. You could really tell throughout that he felt an ownership and pride in the restaurant that is definitely not par for the course in my experience.
As for the food, we ordered the chicken croquets which came out super fast and the pistachio & almond crusted veal chops. Both were extremely tasty, especially the veal chops that came with a tamarind barbeque sauce. Our main courses were the Filet Mignon served over a sweet plantain puree and a creole sauce and a scallop special that was served over a risotto that was colored with squid ink. My filet was cooked perfectly and the sweetness of the plantain puree was balanced by the creole sauce that accompanied it. My wife's scallop special was excellent as well, the risotto was bit harsh until it was put together with the sauce on the scallops. The scallops themselves were large and cooked just as perfectly as my Filet.
The finishing touch was the grilled Nutella sandwich with Frangellica cream and covered in powdered sugar. The only word I can use to describe this amazing creation is WOW!!!!
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