Bullion, Dallas, 1/30/18

exterior
exterior

Bullion is a very stylish and large place on the second floor of a high-rise downtown building. The restaurant, created by Chef Bruno Davaillon, juts out as a gold rectangle protruding from the second floor, which he calls a French brasserie.  Shiny lacquered tables are outfitted with lots of banquette seating, except for the center tables, and are fairly close together. You enter on the ground level and first notice a two story art piece that looks like giant glass beads. Upstairs there is a large lounge area where you are invited to stop and have cocktails before dinner. The bar is adjacent to the dining room which provided background noise but not so much that you couldn’t easily talk at the table.  

exterior
exterior

At the table and around the restaurant many items are identified with the restaurant name or initial.  The menu is not large but there is a daily special offered in addition to the 8 main plates.  A group of appetizers is identified as plates to share. Service was friendly but slightly disorganized and pacing was not good.  For example, on plates to share no utensil was brought that would be suitable for serving, clean plates nor utensils were brought between courses and the promised visit from the sommelier never happened.  Servers all wear long leather aprons and tennis shoes.

entry
entry
interesting sculpture in entry
interesting sculpture in entry
bar
bar
IMG_1110
dining room
menu
menu
Frankie admired the named napkin
Frankie admired the named napkin
table set up
table set up
Beginning sparkler
Beginning sparkler

 

Three types of bread arrive in the table’s bread basket.  A brioche which was soft and buttery was the best of the lot.  The white had a nice chew but was slightly dried out due to pre-cutting.  The baguette was cottony and bland.

bread basket
bread basket
another angle
another angle
Frankie liked the initialed plates
Frankie liked the initialed plates

 

We split a Steak Tartare that came with smoked cream, radish and crispy farro.  The meat was in a chunk cut rather than fine dice.  It went very well with the smoked cream for a nice combination of flavors and textures.

tartar
Steak Tartare with smoked cream, radish, crispy farro
closer
little closer
wine
wine
Frankie checked out the little table lamp
Frankie checked out the little table lamp

 

We had a side order of fried potatoes with a tarragon dipping sauce.  The fries had a wonderful crisp exterior and creamy center.  The dipping sauce was well flavored with tarragon and the fries were nicely pre-salted.

fries
Pommes Frites with tarragon dijonnaise
Frankie looked toward the bar from the dining room
Frankie looked toward the bar from the dining room

 

The Poireax was leeks, goat cheese, and hazelnuts with a truffle vinaigrette.  Some parts of the leeks were quite tender while others you could barely cut.  The truffles were tasteless.  This was acceptable but I’ve had way better examples.

leeks
Poireaux: leeks, goat cheese, hazelnuts, truffle vinaigrette
closer
closer
Frankie checked out the table flowers
Frankie checked out the table flowers

 

The L’Oeuf Poché was billed as a poached egg, wild mushrooms and vin jaune.  The mushrooms did not appear to be wild but rather ones easily obtained at a nice grocery store.  The egg was cooked to runny which certainly was intended to be part of the sauce but no spoon was served to portion it out or to eat with.  The bread was too dry to use to soak it up.  Otherwise it was quite tasty.  In their defense the manager did come by to apologize for the lack of service detail, which was very unexpected in this caliber restaurant.

mushroom
L’oeuf Poché: poached egg, wild mushroom, vin jaune
closer
closer
Frankie likes flowers
Frankie likes flowers

 

For main plates we tried the daily special of veal sweetbreads.  They were cooked nicely with a tasty sauce.  I would order them again.

sweetbreads
Ris de Veau sauce diable: veal sweetbreads, sherry vinegar-peppercorn jus
closer
closer
Frankie liked the light fixture
Frankie liked the light fixture

 

The Orange Duck was plated with parsnips, endive and orange marmalade.  It was cooked nicely rare with most of the fat already rendered.  It had a bit of seasoning on the crispy skin and was surrounded by a nice brown sauce.  It was good.

meat
Canard a la Orange: duck, parsnips, endive, orange marmalade
closer
closer
meat closer
duck closer
Frankie admired the initialed hand towels
Frankie admired the initialed hand towels

 

For dessert the Baba au Rhum was a rum syrup soaked brioche served with chantilly cream and exotic fruits, which were never specified.  A wonderful fruit compote topped the soaked bread which worked nicely with the cream.  The bread (cake) had a tad too dry crumb which turned to grit in your throat.  I ate the fruit but some of the brioche got left.

dessert menu
dessert menu
dessert
Baba au Rhum: rum syrup soaked brioche, chantilly cream, exotic fruits
another angle
another angle
closer
closer
part of kitchen
part of kitchen
Frankie was fascinated with the tiles
Frankie was fascinated with the tiles
construction photo
construction photo
construction photo
construction photo
bar area
bar area
Frankie checked out the table flowers
Frankie checked out the table flowers

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