Everything from the mayonnaise and the stock, to cutting the chips and French fries, is done from scratch at Restaurant Maison.
New owner Chef Adam Dagne, a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu in San Francisco, opened the restaurant at 436 W. Goodwin Street in October. He and his staff, which includes Chef de Cuisine Harley Guy and manager Charlie Kanobbe, believe in creating a unique, comfortable dining experience for patrons. But it's not just the local community that frequents the new restaurant. Travelers have sought out the restaurant, and its European Riviera offerings, from Seattle and as far away as New York. In French, Maison means "home."
Dagne has known he would work in the restaurant industry since the age of eight.
"My family has always congregated in the kitchen," he said. "My dad's side of the family is Polish and Italian. Family reunions always revolved around food and cooking. I grew up with a love of food and it's something I'm good at."
Dagne and his staff bring a long list of experience to the restaurant, which includes years of restaurant work both locally and overseas. Dagne and Guy work together to add a touch of artistic flair and creative technical experience to the Maison menu. Kanobbe brings a wealth of wine knowledge.
"In the same way our menu is concise and thought out, it's the same way with how he does his wine list," Guy said. "We're very proud of that."
For Guy, who said he's always loved music and art, culinary arts is akin to creating a masterpiece.
"When I'm creating with Adam, it almost feels like we're painting," he said.
"Our concept is kind of European Riviera. It's a little bit of France, a little bit of Spain and a little bit of Italy," Dagne said.
Four-course dinners are offered in the evening hours. A four-course dinner is $55, though individual courses, hot or cold, can also be purchased for $15. Courses are designed, however, for a full dining experience. Popular dinner choices include the Confit Salad, which features duck confit, arugula, frisee, spinach, port cherries, warm goat cheese and whole grain vinaigrette. Another popular dish is the Oyster Crudo, which features blue point oysters, mignonette, citrus pearls, horseradish oyster liquor foam and tomato oil. Other courses include Panzanella, Octopus, Foie Gras, Sea Bass, Risotto, Poached Pear dessert, chocolate tort and carrot confit. A full bar and wine list is also available.
"All of our food is very concise, prepared and intentional. The environment and the service is casual and comfortable. We want the idea that's it's home and it's comfortable, with over-the-top food," Dagne said. "Most of our food is geared to taste good with the other courses as an experience. We do encourage people to try at least three courses."
Lunches include the popular Duck Pastrami sandwich, which features pulled duck pastrami, French brie, tart apple compote, artisan greens, roasted tomatoes, on a brioche bun, with whole grain aioli; and the Maison Burger, with burgers made from 75 percent house ground chuck and 25 percent duck breast, with roasted tomatoes, artisan greens, marinated shallots on a brioche bun with roasted garlic aioli. Other lunch choices include the tart flambee, BLT, turkey, crispy shrimp, spinach and grilled pear, and other offerings.
Whenever possible, the restaurant uses local, organic and seasonal ingredients.