Opening soon at the old Stella space at Hotel Provincial is Angeline, opened by well-regarded chef Alex Harrell, last found at Sylvain, which earned 3 Beans in the T-P review (and here is my “review” too). We certainly needed another mid-priced restaurant with a creative menu and an ambitious chef for locals and for savvy visitors. I’ll look forward to making a reservation and will report back here of course.
The Angeline menu will include butter bean tortellini with redeye gravy; sherry-glazed shrimp with fried Meyer lemons and shaved radishes; and fried quail over hoecakes with local honey and hot sauce. The average price of the entrees will be $20
“I don’t want to price out the neighborhood and local business,” he said. “I want it to be a place where people feel comfortable coming in multiple times a week, maybe grab a starter and a glass of wine after work.”
Angeline is the middle name of Harrell’s mother. He wants his restaurant to reflect her personality.
“When I thought what I want the restaurant to be,” he said, “I want it to have that Southern charm. I want it to be friendly and inviting. Those are things that I associate with my mother.”
Went last week with writer pals Nancy and Bill and we had a grand time, excellent service and lovely food. We were originally seated in the lovely main dining room, but one of us wanted to sit in the front room (not me!) and we were immediately seated there. Unfortunately, that front room is low on personality and is a little like sitting in an waiting room, although having access to viewing the street is a plus. (Maybe they can knock down the wall that separates it from the bar and make that all one area, which I think would work very well. If they can’t knock it down completely, then even cutting a “window” between it and the bar would help.)
The main room looked great and two of us eyed it wistfully when we left! I guarantee we’ll sit there next time.
as for food:
I had two of the “starters” of southern fried quail made with local honey, their own hot sauce on a hoe cake and the crispy cauliflower (olivade aioli, sheep’s milk cheese); both were very good. One of us enjoyed the fish entree which had a goodly amount of fish (at first glance, it seemed small but was not). The last had two other starters and loved them as well-one was the chicken livers and arugula (with pickled blue berries, shaved red onion, Angeline buttermilk) and I think the other was the squash blossoms, but I was too busy with my quail. We all shared a nice brothy black eyed pea and collard green soup which was made with bourbon, bacon, smoky pork broth.
Drinks were good-one had asked for sherry and had the good luck of catching the general manager (I think?) on his way out who then stayed for a lively 20 minutes at our table discussing sherry, sent out a flight of choices for tasting and their own copy of the sherry bible to peruse as well as invitations to meet their sherry contacts in Spain for the two of us often there (not me!)
I had a gin drink which was tasty, well presented and a healthy size; the good size is so unusual for a restaurant these days (I’m getting tired of 10.00 cocktails that don’t match their description or are hastily or lightly poured- that is not the case at Angeline, I can assure you.)
Long story short- good menu with robust flavors using many locally sourced ingredients. Staff lovely and pleasant. Ambience good, but stick to main dining room.
yes will be back- after all, it is one of my neighborhood restaurants.