Review: Mercantile

14 May 2017

After a few nice days spent in the lovely state of South Dakota, I sadly bid it farewell — tho not as fast as I thought, courtesy of the delayed (is there any other type?) flight from Frontier. But we made our way to Denver, a place I’ve not been in ages. Last time I was here I hooked up with a trainee mortician…

Anyway, after a very long day that took me south of the state and stuck in a stupid traffic jam in the middle of nowhere, I headed to dinner by the new airport train — albeit just from my hotel to Union Station. Mercantile is one of the popular eateries in the train station complex, and I was eager to check it out.

I got there about 20 minutes early and despite the early hour, it was not ready — Mothers Day glut I suppose. In any case, I parked myself at the bar and enjoyed a pair of well-made cocktails…

cockail - 01

Good stuff. I was then seated and as I was polishing off that second bevvy I placed my order. I chilled out and I switched to wine. But as the place was quite busy the food took awhile, and a surprising comp dish arrived.

0-farro

Farro salad with fava beans and various other things. Very west-coast stuff seemingly… Not bad, kept me going until my first course finally arrived.

1-shishito

A set of shishito peppers with pigs ears. Both done quite well, tho did not get one spicy pepper, which was disappointing. Most of the ears were done pretty well, but the sauce was probably not necessary… I keep wondering what is wrong with natural flavours? Why not just accentuate rather than adulterate?

In any case, a bit more wine and my middle course arrived, the pasta.

2-spaghetti

Ink spaghetti with squid and various chillies. This was quite nice, lovely spicy flavour. I really like when the chillies come out, and they actually flaked it to my specifications after the plate was presented. Nice touch, and gave me control over the spice. Nice, very good dish.

I was pretty happy with this dinner and with more wine my final course arrived — the short rib.

3-short rib

Now this was a hit-and-miss item. The rib was tender and nice, but the sauce was a bit intrusive. The ramps were okay but the morels were extremely salty. A line cook screwed up somewhere this Mothers Day Sunday… Anyway, an okay dish.

I was way full now, so just a liquid dessert. But they were getting busy again and the bar was full, so I just took one and settled up, knowing that with a reduced train schedule if I miss my train it’ll be a half hour before the next one, so…

But overall a rather good dinner. Denver, you are tasting pretty good.

Mercantile
Union Station
1701 Wynkoop Street
Denver, Colorado