what: Pan-Seared Blueline Tilefish
where: The Oak Table, 1221 Main St., 563-5066
This week’s Bite is one of my favorites on the current menu at Oak Table for many reasons: It’s modern, light and Spanish-influenced, but at the top of the list, it’s a study in contrasts. Chef Nathan Moody’s deceptively simple-looking presentation is centered around a pan-seared filet of blueline tilefish, a species with big, luxuriously soft flakes of meat. (I like big flakes and I cannot lie.) The dish is served with asparagus, which when I had it, was of the white variety — the veal of the vegetable world, as my high school biology teacher once called it. The contrast comes into the mix with the rest of the set: a smoky romesco sauce for the asparagus, juxtaposed with a bright and cool green gazpacho of apple, cucumber, lime, serrano peppers and cilantro. Successfully pulling off contrasts in texture and temperature within the same dish, while matching flavors and seasonality is no easy task. This week might be your last chance to check out this particular version of the dish, since blueline tilefish season is coming to a close, and the summer menu at Oak Table will be rolling away soon.— Jonathan Sharpe
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