Piedmont restaurant is a Durham staple that has made its reputation off the modern farm-to-table experience. It was one of the classic spots I hadn't tried out so I thought I would visit with my Durham dining crew comprising of Ms. Millz and Ms. Brasiliana. Luckily, it wasn't too difficult to reserve a table because we dined there on a weekday evening.
I admired the restaurant's outdoor minimalist design and it's more farmhouse-like interior; it seemed like they were keeping true to the entire concept of a rustic dining experience.
I started off with the Pan Seared Scallops ($14). The scallops were cooked perfectly, evident by the tenderness. The rosemary cream provided some earthy tones that nicely contrasted the sweetness from the bacon jam and the umami from the oyster mushrooms. Overall, a very rich and well- balanced starter.
I opted for the Striped Bass as my main ($28). This was a decent-tasting dish but it didn't blow me away. The fish was slightly overcooked and the 'forbidden rice' lacked some flavour. The dish was nicely presented (it literally looked like an explosion on a plate) but unfortunately, there wasn't much else to it.
My dessert was a Chocolate Sponge ($8). This was excellent. The chocolate sponge was fluffy and warm, the candied peanut immediately melted in my mouth, the apricot jam provided a pop of acidity and the popcorn gave the dish some bite.
In summary, I would say that Piedmont exemplifies hints of refined cooking and top-notch presentation, although there's still room for improvement. The main dish fell short and the ambience is nothing to cry home about but I was very impressed by the starter and the dessert. I applaud the restaurateurs for abiding by a farm-to-table ethos and I can only hope for a better meal when I return to sample their menu next season.
401 Foster St
Durham NC, 27701
Would I recommend? Yes