Southern European Bistro

By Carol & Joe Davis
Dining Detectives

We have always enjoyed going to Blackhawk Plaza in Danville to dine and shop but had not been there in well over a year. We knew there were some new restaurants, so we decided that since it was overcast and 60 degrees in the City a ride to where it was warm would be very welcome. Blackhawk Plaza has had its ups and downs over the past twenty years but this time we could feel that there was a Renaissance happening.

There were lots of diners in the new restaurants, people were strolling around the lovely lake which runs through the plaza and most of the shops were full. Yes, we accomplished our goal as it was over 80 degrees at 6:00 PM so many people were enjoying dining outdoors.

click on image to enlarge & get caption

Laurus, which was opened by Executive Chef Matthew Silverman, in November 2009 is a Southern European Bistro featuring the cuisine of France, Italy and Spain. The interior décor is quite stylish with a beautiful bar area, fabulous tiered pendant Moroccan inspired glass lighting, large botanical prints and an open exhibition kitchen with a pizza oven. They have booths and tables indoor, as well as a terrace with outdoor dining overlooking the lake. We decided to sit inside in the center of the restaurant, to get the full effect including the view of the lake but many of the diners opted for outside as it was such a beautiful night.

Our server was very knowledgeable and professional. He knew the menu well and reviewed it with us in perfect detail. We were in the mood for cocktails and ordered a refreshing Cosmopolitan with fresh lime and Grey Goose Vodka and a tasty Paul's Kamikaze made with Absolut Vanilla Vodka, triple sec and lime. We began our dinner with their Truffled Cauliflower Bisque with sweet corn-pancetta relish and chives. The flavors were complex and complimented the exquisite flavor of the cauliflower puree.

This is one of our favorite soups! Next, we had their Treviso Caesar Salad wrapped in prosciutto, with hard boiled quail egg and parmesan reggiano which was lightly dressed and tasted extra fresh. The presentation was beautiful! You must have the Moroccan Spiced Lamb Spare Ribs with apricot glaze and spicy carrot-almond slaw. The spices were fantastic and the meat fell off the bone. The portion was large enough that this could be an entrée. We also liked the Wood-Fired Flatbread which was a spicy White Shrimp Pizza with padrone peppers, roasted red peppers, garlic-leek confit and cilantro.

The Entrees that we enjoyed were the Veal Scaloppini with crimini mushrooms, lemon, Marsala and capellini aglio olio and the Pan Seared Diver Scallops with excellent white corn succotash-risotto, English peas, peppers, and yellow tomatoes. On a future trip, we will have to try their Mesquite Grill entrees which feature chicken and steaks. The wine list includes wines by the glass which are served in a carafe, so you can enjoy them at your own pace. The Caposaldo Prosseco Brut Vento paired well with our starters and the 2007 Domaine Arlaud Roncevie Pinot Noir Bourgogne paired well with the Veal.

The Desserts that we tasted included a fabulous Caramelized Pineapple Tart served with vanilla gelato, whipped cream and caramel sauce which was reminiscent of a pineapple upside down cake and a decadent Banana Cream Pie made with chocolate butter mousse, caramelized bananas and whipped cream. A Double Espresso and a 2007 Banyuls chapoutier vin du naturel dessert wine were the perfect finish to a very enjoyable dinner. Laurus has all the elements of a destination restaurant with excellent cuisine, friendly service and very appealing ambiance!

Laurus Restaurant
3483 Blackhawk Plaza Circle
Danville, CA. 94506


 Food & Beverage International | |  NutraFoodies |  California the Magazine
Home |  Food |  Wine |  Chefs |  Restaurants |  Advertisers |  Recipes
Travel |  Slide-Shows |  Whos News |  Directories | 
Events  |  Newsletters |  About Us |  Media Kit

©2000 - 2010 Food and Beverage International
All Rights Reserved. | Contact Us |