As new resident to New Haven I am still working my way down the restaurant list, and Zinc had been on my to-do for some time. Today was the day, an early dinner with my daughter. What first catches your eye entering zinc is - not much. The decor is dark, in I guess what is described as a minimalist/modern touch with dark wood, mirrors and of course some obligatory zinc. With some candles and flowers it might exude some sex appeal in the later evening...but without it the atmosphere does not exude much character at all. It is restaurant week in New Haven, and as this was my first Zinc stop, I'm not sure what impact this had on the menu offering. We chose the 3 course menu, and had a glass of open steel chardonnay from the list. A good start. For me it was grilled shrimp first - 3 good sized and very tasty ones served with some minced red beet and seasoning. As a main course we both had the braised beef - served on french string beans, with a "pistachio -bernaise" creme sauce - interesting - and again perfectly seasoned, prepared and very tasty. My dessert was an apple crisp with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream - this was a bore - not bad, but heavy on the sugar and nothing else to set it apart. My daughter had the chocolate mousse cake, which was likewise good - but not to write home about. The coffee was excellent - I mention this as I am fussy with my coffee after living 30 years in Europe. Service was friendly, not overbearing and attentive - my only complaint here is that at least in the evenings, a waiter should not serve the bill in the middle of dessert - wait until it is asked for if your guests are obviously in no rush - don't make them feel you can't wait for their table to be free !! Some of us like to relax at dinner - have espresso or coffee afterwards, and maybe even an after dinner drink. Overall a solid culinary performance, but in my estimation more effort may be required to compete with that volatile Frenchman a block down the street.
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