The first restaurant venture of executive chef Shawn McClain (Green Zebra), Springs more than a half-decade old and still fresh. The concepts simple: clean, clever Asian-influenced seafood dishes, as in appetizers of a barbecued eel maki roll or short ribs with Japanese egg noodles and a fried quail egg in a Szechuan mushroom bouillon. The flavor of the fish dishes is usually kept pure; the corruptions confined to the splendid sides and sauces. Maine skate wing, for example, came with artichokes, cipollini onions, tagliatelle, and toasted pumpkin-seed vinaigrette; grilled Hawaiian prawns with delectable pork belly dumplings and a Thai-spiced aromatic shellfish broth. Potato ravioli tested the structural stability of potatoes, but the single seared scallop that accompanies it was pristine and a pungent mushroom-black truffle reduction is the perfect foil, like a gastronomic good cop-bad cop routine.
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