Would we go back:
15000 Minnetonka Blvd
• Artisan Cheese Plate (shared) $8.00
• Pan Roasted Halibut $14.95 (shared)
• Molten chocolate cake/Flourless Torte (shared)
First off I probably should confess that I do know the chef of this restaurant and we work together on a committee. So we have been meaning to go the Marsh for some time, but we finally found an opportunity to go.
I think the night we went there was a bad night to show up, there was a wedding and so most of the staff and resources were going to that. I know this is really not an excuse, but my understanding is that there is usually not a big weekend dinner service, they do most of their business during the week. So the dining room was pretty empty, which made it nice and quiet and it really does have a beautiful view.
I thought the meal was very good, my pan roasted halibut, was really as good as I have had any where else in the city for a fraction of the price. The desserts were both very nice (and comped because we were recognized which was a fun experience). The service was a little rough, but I think the person assigned to the dining room was a little inexperienced since everyone else was working the wedding.
A couple of weeks later we went to a wine dinner there, which we found out about when we were there that Saturday, and that was a totally different experience, first the dining room was packed, the service was outstanding, and the food was a set menu and everything was excellent and it was really reasonable for a five course meal with wine. I will definitely go back for a wine dinner.
Overall if you live in the area, I would check it out. However, even if you don't live in the area, I would check out one of the wine dinners.
• Baby back ribs $15.95
The Marsh is a strange place, but overall they do a decent job. We reviewed the restaurant on a normal Saturday night and returned for a wine dinner about two weeks later. The Marsh was like two totally different places. I would definitely go back for a wine dinner, but the regular menu is less impressive.
The Marsh is a strange place because they are a spa and wellness facility with club memberships in the west metro area. There motto is "a center for Balance and Fitness." That would lead you to expect a health conscious menu. But, in another example of give-'em-what-they-want, the menu is much more American dining out than New Age. So, I had to order the baby back ribs. They were alright, nothing outstanding, but not too bad either. We heard that the sous chef had recently left the restaurant, so it is understandable that the executive chef has his hands full in maintaining a high quality operation.
I was a little disappointed that the artisan cheese plate only had one kind of cheese on the plate, which I believe is a first for us. The desserts were nothing outstanding, but they didn't fall flat, either. The ambiance was something like a hotel breakfast room with a spectacular suburban marsh view. The service was below average because one server was trying to handle too many tables for her experience level.
The wine dinner that was about two weeks later was much better - the food, the service, the wine, everything was impeccable. This is the real opportunity to see the executive chef's and the entire staff's real talents and abilities. If you're willing to hold out for these special occasions, do not hesitate to go to The Marsh to see what they're really capable of.
September 2, 2006