Mandiferous' Blog

Aug. 11, 2011 at 8:35am

Marrow: A Review

Best dinner I've had in a long time

Tuesday was my 29th birthday. I spent most of the day at a conference in Mukilteo so I didn't make it back to Tacoma in time for dinner. Last night my parents took me to a new restaurant in Tacoma: Marrow Kitchen Bar on 6th Ave. Their soft opening was July 30th so it hasn't been open long but the initial reviews have been very positive. Thought I'd check it out for myself. First off, I love the decor. Lots of IKEA furniture, but classy IKEA, not MTV Real World IKEA if you know what I mean. Owner Jason Jones built the clustered bare bulb light fixtures. I couldn't stop staring.

Lots of mirrors and cork along the walls, as well as a neat "wall" of glass whiskey bottles on wires.
Photo by Ron Swarner, Weekly Volcano

I arrived much earlier than my parents and treated myself to a cocktail. Just about all their cocktails are named after women: Betty, Wilma, Ophelia, etc. I had a Betty. I don't remember all the ingredients but it tasted like orange and deliciousness.

Behold the Betty. I had two.

I was also brought bread and butter to snack on. I believe it was potato bread. Nothing super special but the butter was sprinkled with black sea salt, which I'd never had before. Each time I bit into a grain of salt it was a little explosion of flavor that complemented the butter really well.

And it looked snazzy.

My parents arrived and we tackled the menu. It was pinned to a sheet of cork board (another fun touch but I didn't get a pic). One side (Marrow) featured all the meat-centric dishes, the other (Arrow) was all vegetarian entrees. We started with the spicy onion ale soup. The spicyness of the fennel was a little much for me but for the most part I really enjoyed it.

All three of us opted for the Marrow menu. My mom ordered the duck with broccolini and a potato puree. The plate was finished with a pistachio dust which was a festive touch but didn't really affect the dish flavor-wise.

That's a russet chip sticking out of the potatoes.

I'm not a big fan of duck, but that was probably the best I've ever had. The broccolini was al dente with a great crunch. The potatoes were pretty mild, but worked very well to balance out the richness of the duck.

My dad ordered the 8oz ribeye with wild mushrooms, potato puree and some sort of greens (spinach?) on top. The steak was a little lightly seasoned for my taste but was incredibly tender. Having a lap band, I often can't eat steak because it's too dense. I didn't have any problem with this.

I ordered the escargot. I'd never had snails before but had always been curious. 
Ho. Lee. Crap. It was amazing. Soft and chewy but not at all rubbery, with a rich (I hesitate to say "earthy" for fear of sounding pretentious but that's the word that came to mind) flavor. Cooked with chunks of bacon in a garlic and basil butter sauce with a little lemon zest for a nice citrus-y bite. I swear I spent half my meal with my eyes closed, it was that good. The bacon itself was pretty rubbery when you chewed on it, but the infusion of flavor was incredible. The bread was a nice touch for soaking up the leftover butter. The frisee with a balsamic vinaigrette was meh. I suppose the acidity of the vinaigrette was supposed to balance out the richness of the escargot but I was enjoying the snails and butter too much to care.

See that bowl on the left. It's full of magic. Magic and butter and bacon.

I think the serving sizes were just right for the varying richness of the dishes. The three of us had just enough room to split a dessert. There were only three dessert choices and we opted for the poached pear with fresh berries and hazelnut mascarpone. The pear was poached in cinnamon, cloves and probably some sort of simple syrup. I'm not normally one for fruity desserts but this was pretty damn good. Like extra-firm cinnamon applesauce. The mascarpone had chunks of hazelnuts mixed in which added an unexpected but tasty crunch. A sliced strawberry and a couple raspberries finished the dish off nicely.

I left Marrow wanting to have its babies. Will definitely come back and explore the vegetarian side of the menu soon. Here are a couple more pics just for fun.

My water came with cucumber. I would have preferred ice but it was a cute touch.

One of the art installations. Like coasters on steroids, but I kinda dug it.

comments [11]  |  posted under Marrow, restaurants, reviews, Tacoma


by tacoma1 on 8/11/2011 @ 10:16am
I'm always on the lookout for a veg friendly restaurant in T Town. Where's it at?

by Mandiferous on 8/11/2011 @ 10:28am
2717 6th Avenue. On the corner of 6th and Anderson.

by Erik on 8/11/2011 @ 11:07am
Marrow is an amazing place. Great review.

by KevinFreitas on 8/11/2011 @ 12:30pm
"I left Marrow wanting to have its babies." Haha! Thanks so much for the review and well done! I can't wait to stop by and try them out soon!

by tacoma1 on 8/11/2011 @ 12:42pm
I can't wait to stop in either. It is actually within walking distance for me. Thanks for the heads up.

by sophiavanslyke on 8/11/2011 @ 6:00pm
We went to the soft opening, the rib eye and marrow burger is what we ordered, the food was to die for. Might be headed that way tonight after thinking of that food!

by Jesse on 8/11/2011 @ 7:58pm
If the food is half as good as it looks, they'll do great! This place is now on my to do list

by seejane on 8/11/2011 @ 8:51pm
they seemed pretty busy when I walked by around 8:00 Thursday night

by NSHDscott on 8/11/2011 @ 11:08pm
Do they have a happy hour?

by Mandiferous on 8/12/2011 @ 8:17am
They have a late night happy hour. 10pm until about 1am. Cheap drinks and a $5 rotating food menu.

by Erik on 8/12/2011 @ 11:55am
Volcano reviews Marrow:


I'm Mandi. I've lived in the Tacoma area my whole life and I love it. I'm not a very prolific blogger but I do what I can.

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