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Cherry Street's In 'Gastronomical Purgatory'; Is 'Quaint' Russian House's Menu Too Ambitious?

In the last week, the Austin American-Statesman's Matthew Odam reviews Cherry Street, the Italian restaurant in downtown no-man's-land from Péché's Rob Pate and chef Jason Dodge, while the Austin Chronicle visits Russian House.

Odam finds Cherry Street in "gastronomical purgatory" between U.T. and the Capitol, but loves the "savory wood-roasted pork and veal meatballs" and praises the pizzas, a "a fluffy-chewy balance of yeast and salt," despite some clunky toppings. He gets "salt overload" from a brie and prosciutto panino and a pasta puttanesca that "tasted like it had been dropped on a Sicilian beach." Odam's rating? A 6.5 out of 10 that "will need to execute with more precision" to succeed in the area.

Meanwhile, a few blocks south of Cherry Street, the Austin Chronicle's Rachel Feit visits Russian House, where "nightclub meets little-old-lady quaint." Feit finds the early-dinner, late-late-dancing vibe "immensely appealing," but the huge menu "tries to cover too much ground." She does find favorites, however, including the Ukranian borscht ("truly worth getting to know") and the cabbage dishes, the "next best thing to a trip to Moscow." For dessert, she recommends the "positively medieval" stuffed, baked apple, as its "sticky simplicity makes a fine end to a meaty Russian meal."

· Cherry Street tries to draw dinner crowd to area between Capitol and UT [Austin360]
· Review: Russian House [Austin Chronicle]

[Photo: Cherry Street/Facebook]

Cherry Street

1612 Lavaca St Austin, TX 78701