|A tasty summer martini!|
Thankfully, the cocktail list was more exciting (and reasonably priced.) Mr. Nomadreader and I both started with the same cocktail (the horror!), which involved muddled basil, gin and lemonade (I think; my notes are a little blurry.) Regardless, it was fresh and delicious, and a delightful summer treat. I appreciate stemless martini glasses, and this one was the perfect weight in my hand.
|(Top) asparagus salad; (bottom) seared scallops|
|Chive potato gnocchi with prawns|
|Hanger steak with Chorizo frites|
Mr. Nomadreader opted for the hanger steak frites. The steak, like the rest of our meal, was cooked perfectly (rare). The frites at Alba are Chorizo frites. They were tasty, but the portion was huge. I especially enjoyed the fresh scallions on top, but I could have lived without the chorizo (or the frites, really).
I'm not much of a dessert eater, and I was quite full, but Mr. Nomadreader ordered the apple beignets. They were tasty, but he jokingly disdained them as apple fritters rather than apple beignets; I agreed. I would have loved an herbacious creme freche dipping sauce with them too.
Overall, the meal was nice, but it wasn't nice enough to entice me back frequently. I appreciated the use of seasonal ingredients, and I would like to revisit in autumn, which is my favorite time of year for seasonal eating and drinking. The service was good. It was a relatively slow night with only one server, but the manager was prompt in refilling waters. The pacing was nice, and we were never in need of anything. In another city, Alba might shine more than it does in Des Moines. The wine list needs attention. The food is perfectly executed, but only one dish wowed me with its flavor combinations.
Service: 4 stars (out of 5)
Food: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
Next week in Loving the Des Moines Life: a recap of the Des Moines Arts Festival