I really like this sorta hipster coffee shop upscale dinner scene. For the sake of a fair review, you should know I went for a private (but free) Strangers with Style event. This spot is very trendy, serving several styles of Counter Culture coffee – which is currently my favorite roaster out of North Carolina. To my surprise they also have a decent wine and beer selection; I love that they have local selection like Public Works & Union Craft. I wasn’t there for coffee, but I will be…
I chose the Conde Vilar Rosé. I am a little addicted to rosé right now. This is not your mama’s white zinfandel, which is very sugary wine-cooleresque; they are red grape wines that spend less time with the grape skins, usually only a few days. And depending on the winery and the wine maker they range from sweet to dark and also light to dark pink. This rosé is made in Portugal with Espadeiro grapes. I really enjoyed it and might try to add it to my small collection (I wonder if the Wine Source sells it??). It was a little darker than I expected, but not heavy at all, actually quite a smooth finish. I found the fruity aromas to be a perfect complement for the acidity.
Now, onto Dooby’s. I was rather impressed. There were probably 100 or more people in this place, all arriving at the same time, and they managed to provide enough food for everyone to have a taste of everything. We started with a tomato bisque served dip style with some crostini. The flavor was completely unexpected; I found it rather sweet and went back and forth between loving and hating it.
Next, they served their kimchi fried rice with some cucumbers and carrots in a sushi roll. I have no idea how they made the rolls into a tear drop shape, but they came on a tray in cute little daisy shaped flowers. Not my favorite either, but great texture and presentation. I am also not a huge fan of kimchi or even fried rice, so don’t skip it on my review.
We were able to try a version of their mushroom melt – we had a mix of marinated portobello, shiitake, & button mushrooms served on a crostini and topped with a little Gruyère. I liked these and apparently so did everyone else, because they flew off the app trays super super fast.
Dooby’s took turns putting out the next trays of food, and I am super glad because even though I missed the first round, I was still able to try their pork buns and the burger. The pork belly was a little thick and chewy and served on a traditional soft Chinese pork bun with sriracha aioli, soy-caramel & kimchi. The kimchi was rather mellow so I found the flavor spot on. I had a few grisly pieces of pork, which made some bits a little difficult considering we were standing and also holding drinks. The sliders were also great – served on a pretzel bun. The juicy burger was topped with an aged, sharp cheddar and dressed greens. I am a fan and can’t fault them too much for my crusty crumbly pretzel bun as they were making 60 slider-sized buns at one time.
I think we all agreed on our favorite nugget of the night – the Earl Grey frozen chocolate ganache covered in white chocolate crumbles. My dairy free friend even decided it was worth the cheat and possible discomfort. The tea flavor was appealing and absolutely not overpowering. I believe I made a comment about the big bites reminding me that my teeth are a little sensitive.
The fact that Dooby’s could cater that size a party and provide incredibly tasteful morsels throughout the entire night means I will be heading back for a regular dinner or brunch type meal. I can’t wait.