Sherman's Food Adventures: Say Mercy!

Say Mercy!

You know, I never quite understood the Dark Manor Inn.  From the time I walked in there...  almost into a wall...  because it was so freakin' dark!  Yah, I got the idea.  It was a spooky place with aptly named cocktails to match.  Well, it didn't last despite being related to the more successful Tiki Room in the Waldorf.  Now we find that the location was more than a haunted dark room.  With floor to ceiling windows and gasp, light, the place has transformed into Say Mercy! brought to you by the good folks from the MacKenzie RoomJacqueline and I hit up the place recently to check out what Italian and American BBQ have in common.

We decided to get a taste of the menu by opting for the "Jesus Takes the Wheel" menu ($55.00pp).  This way, we got one item from every section of the menu beginning with the Dorado Crudo sporting scallion & chili dressing, sun dried olive, Meyer lemon, blood orange, endive and mint.  We really enjoyed the buttery fish as it had a good mouth feel and was supremely fresh being naturally sweet.  There was a bit too much salt though as it overpowered the citrus.  When we added the olive into each bite, the combined saltiness was a bit overwhelming.  I loved the crunch of the endive as it added texture and despite the saltiness, I did get the freshness of the mint at the end.  The best dish of the night was no doubt the Barbeque Bolognese with spaghetti, pancetta, smoked pork butt and grana padano.  As much as the al dente pasta was perfect, the real star was the bolgonese.  It was sweet, savoury, smokey and spicy which created layers of impactful flavours.  Combined with the meatiness of the pork, this was hearty and addictive.

Onto the meat of the meal, we were served the Beef Rib with a Dr. Pepper spiced glaze and dirty farro .  There is no other descriptor than "perfect" for the beef rib.  It fell off the bone being succulent and moist.  Although there was a lack of penetrated flavours, the glaze made up for that with a sticky sweetness accented by smoke and light spice.  Underneath, the farro was equally delicious with tender bits of mortadella, meaty chicken hearts and livers as well as crispy oyster mushroom.  On the side, we got the Fresh Bread consisting of Parker House Rolls and focaccia.  This was a perfect accompaniment to the pasta as there was so much meat, we could make sandwiches with it.  The rich flavours of the bolognese helped bring the bread alive.  I particularly liked the rolls as they were soft while having a firmness to them.  Great to soak up the sauce.

Our side was very rich being the Roasted Cabbage with fontina cream sauce, crispy shallots and chives.  Cheesy and heavy, the slightly salt sauce was best soaked up by the bread rather than used purely for the tender and smoky cabbage.  There was more than enough on top already.  Loved the crunch of the aromatic shallots.  Onto dessert, we were served the Lingonberry Jam Beignet.  For me, it was more like a regular jelly donut rather than a beignet.  Not that is not a bad thing as it was a good donut.  It was a bit denser than I would've liked, but it was hardly a deal-breaker.  Loved the filling as it was fruity while not being overwhelmingly sweet.  There was also lots of it so every bite of donut was full of lingonberry jam.  Overall, we enjoyed out meal at Say Mercy!.   The place is definitely lively as the tables are packed tightly.  Service was on point and we thought the prices were reasonable.

The Good:
- Solid eats that mesh BBQ and Italian together
- On point service
- Reasonable pricing

The Bad:
- Seating is packed tightly
- Dining room is loud (but we didn't mind)

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