Proving Des Moines is NOT boring

Why Eat at a Chain Wednesday: Table 128 Bistro & Bar

I assume wizards work in the kitchen at Table 128 Bistro & Bar. How could I have eaten cold, cooked Brussels sprouts and absolutely love every bite. It’s the wizardry of simple ingredients and great execution that make the dishes at Table 128 stand out.

20140222_142535A few friends and I went to the restaurant for lunch after hearing good things about the new inhabitant of Tartine in Clive. Tartine’s owners Lynn and Sarah Pritchard decided to ditch the weekday breakfasts and instead focus on lunch and dinner in their new endeavor Table 128 Bistro and Bar. For those Tartine fans, a few dishes made it back onto the menu as well their locally sourced products.

The menu is broken down into appetizers, soup & salad, burgers, sandwiches as well as a substantial wine list. The appetizers included hearty options like mussels, rosemary + truffle fries as well as easily sharable dishes bread & butter, cheese plate and chips & dip options. Their salad selection had some interesting variations including Brussels sprouts, roasted beet, kale caesar and crab cake salad.

20140222_142529Burgers seem to be a mainstay for Table128 with one namesake burger and 4 other options with great sides such as soup, salad, chips or fries. Their sandwich selection included crab cake, chicken, ham and shrimp variations as well as a vegetarian.

After we asked for recommendations, our waitress animatedly recommended her personal favorite: the Brussel sprouts salad as well as the crab cake sandwich and the daily special: grilled herb chicken carbonara on pappardelle noodles.

After her spiel, my friends had opted out of their soup and salad combos and each got one of the recommended dishes.

My brussel sprout salad consisted of La Quercia prosciutto, almond, manchego and champagne vinaigrette. Despite the simple list of ingredients my salad was amazing. It was also huge. I took some for leftovers the next day. My friend loved her crab cake sandwich, but wasn’t as fond of the kale salad. The special of the day had savory pappardelle noodles with a good amount of chicken.

20140222_142543Prices ranged from $9-$14 which were not unreasonable for the size and quality of the dishes.

The atmosphere was warmer and more sophisticated than café-like Tartine. The upcycled wine-bottle water glasses were a nice touch and a nod to the restaurant’s great wine selection.