We definitely took a chance driving down on a Friday night, but with so many other options in Philadelphia, we weren't worried about it in the least. Needless to say we got down there in about 40 minutes, and were lucky enough to find parking on the street less than a block away.
For years I had heard of how bad of an area "Fishtown" section of Philly was from friends, but after seeing it two weekends ago, that is the furthest from the truth! The area is eclectic, friendly, artsy, and just a cool neighborhood to hang out in. I have no idea how much revitalization has been done in this area, but there are definitely some gorgeous houses!
We walked into Sonata to find a pretty full restaurant, but there happened to be a two top open to the left of the door, and the hostess seated us there with no worries! Woo hoo! Our server came over and filled our water glasses as I pulled out Riedel's and opened a 2006 August West Rosella's Pinot Noir. Perfect pairing for the menu at Sonata, and a delicious wine!
For starters tonight, Zelda had the Corn Soup with Cilantro Corn Fritters and it was very nice. It was both sweet and savory at the same time, and the fritters were very tasty! This is my kind of spring soup, and was plenty hearty, but not over filling. The flavors worked and melded nicely together, and this was a great pick.
I couldn't resist the Crispy Pork Belly once again, with a smoked tomato marmalade on the side, served with 3 rounds of compressed apple. Again, this was delicious, and the flavors were amazing. If this were a dish, I would order it in a heartbeat, but as an app it is plenty delicious. The marmalade had great smoked flavors, and a nice sweetness to it as well. This is a winner, and worth the trip alone.
For entrees tonight, Zelda ordered the Seared Salmon, served with saffron cous cous, grilled asparagus, and a blood orange vinaigrette. The salmon was cooked nicely, and the cous cous had great flavors that paired perfectly with the vinaigrette. She did make a point that the salmon may have just been a bit fatty on the bottom, but aside from that it was very nice.
I went the fish route tonight as well with the Lemon Fish, and again, the flavors were really nice. Although the menu doesn't state, I think that this might be cooked via sous vide, as it was very delicate, and cooked absolutely perfectly, with no char or sear marks. The pea risotto was fabulous, and the tarragon butter gave it nice flavor too. Finally, the tomato cardamom broth was genius, and overall the made for a delicious entrée.
We couldn't skip dessert tonight, and Zelda had the chocolate plate consisting of Chocolate Decadence that was nice and rich, along with a Warm Chocolate Beignet that was oozing chocolate, and finally a Chocolate Hazelnut "Chipwich" that was also great.
I opted for the Caramel Banana Crème Brulee served with a super light and airy peanut butter mousse, and topped with a piece of homemade peanut brittle. What is there to say here other than heaven? This was fabulous, and had some of my favorite elements on it.
Needless to say, twice in a period of 7 days spoiled me, and I had great meals both times at Sonata. From the cozy ambiance, to the great service on both nights, to a super nice (and young) Chef Mark Tropea, we were truly impressed! Look forward to going back to visit again soon! Cheers!