Black Market Bistro gets my vote as “Best Restaurant in Garrett Park.” Then again, I’m pretty sure it might be the only restaurant in Garrett Park. No matter – it’s a wonderful place, and understandably overlooked in the online restaurant community (because it’s hidden in a hamlet few people know about, even though it’s just a few minutes from Strathmore Hall).
Every time I dine here, I kick myself for not coming more often, but they’re certainly not hurting for business, at least on weekends – it was pretty crowded with locals fairly late on a Saturday night.
On the menu, there will be a little insert with the daily specials, and you’ll do well to take a close look. Black Market Bistro (like it’s “sister” restaurant, Addie’s) pays ample respect to local farms, and will often have fresh produce that they don’t have time to place on the regular menu.
I took a look at the daily specials, and decided to make a meal of them. Going a step further, I decided to make it vegetarian because everything looked so appealing (plus I’d just eaten a slice of Dominic’s pizza and felt mildly guilty).
They have a pretty nice selection of beers here, and I was in the mood for a Red Seal Ale ($6.75) which went well with the pepitas in my Butternut Squash Soup ($4 for a cup), mingling with a pool of crème fraîche. A very pure and mild soup, this benefitted greatly from a couple shakes of salt.
For my main course, I went with the Vegetable Plate ($17), and I’m so glad I did because it was fantastic, and a very good deal at the price. It was big plate, full of farmer’s market-fresh grilled haricots verts, Brussels sprouts, roasted cauliflower, marinated beets (terrific), baby carrots, and also an unadvertised bonus, some baby bok choy. By the time I’d finished, I was stuffed, but it was a guilt-free, healthy stuffed, the kind that makes you feel really good about what you just ate.
So of course I ruined it by getting the Toffee Pecan Cake ($8), a lovely dessert served with butter pecan ice cream, caramel, and chocolate sauce. I plowed through this, and it was gone within minutes. No regrets, either.