|Thankfully, Katy is still on the bar.|
Wappingers Falls, NY 12590
Lunch: Monday ~ Friday
Dinner: Monday ~ Saturday
Some rumored changes at Le Express Bistro prompted us to visit, and our Wednesday night crew stopped in last night for dinner. John Lekic, who was one of the original owners, has bought out his partner and made some changes in the kitchen. (Thankfully Katy is still on the bar.) Chef Tibor Kogler has been brought in to run the kitchen, and his influences can already be seen on the revamped menu, which now has a genuine tapas flavor. I recognized Chef Kogler's name from a former stint at Aroma Thyme in Ellenville, which enjoys a wonderful reputation for their healthy, locally sourced menu. Hints of Le Express's planned tapas menu made appearances last night, as our group of six stood at the bar for a few hours and tried everything on the menu, and then some.
We started with plates of home made ravioli, stuffed with a poached pheasant egg from Quattro's, some Coach Farm goat cheese, and topped with toasted chanterelle mushrooms and specks of sauteed arugula. If this was the chef's version of culinary shock and awe, it worked. It was fantastic - savory and sultry from the slightly poached egg, with just an essence of earthiness from the mushrooms. It was totally unexpected if for no other reason that one of the items on the menu was chicken wings, and sorry - call me a snob - I just don't expect dishes like this from a kitchen that also makes chicken wings. The poached lobster was every bit as good ~ you need to try some of these.
A tiny sliver of roasted pork belly came out to the bar dripping with a spoonful of candied fresh blueberries. It was one of those dishes that made me smile before I even tasted it. A house made chicken liver pate was plated with toasted baguette slices, course grained mustard, and sprinkled with pickled ramps. Delicious.
I am hoping the lamb sausage remains on the menu, along with the duck confit. They are two of my favorite dishes here.