Thanks to Jon Christensen for a terrific review in the Dispatch this week! He’s a fan of our schnitzel, spaetzle, chicken paprikash and beef stroganoff!
Restaurant Review: Mozart’s venue change reinvigorates entrees
By Jon Christensen
In July, Mozart’s Bakery & Piano Cafe moved into a new space on N. High Street, north of its previous location in the Clintonville neighborhood.
Mozart’s, which opened in 1995, still offers breakfast, lunch, dinner, afternoon tea, pastries and coffee. This is a look at the new location’s dinner menu, which has been significantly revised.
Some of the standards can still be found, including the veal ($15.95) and chicken ($14.95) schnitzels. But they seem better than ever, with a top-notch butter-sauteed crust. Interestingly, the chicken version provides as much flavor as the veal.
They’re both served with fresh vegetables and choice of spaetzle, mashed potatoes or basmati rice.
The spaetzle, like the schnitzels, are better here than they had been down the street, because the cooked miniature dumplings are sauteed briefly in butter over high heat.
The mashed potatoes taste real. Enriched with cream, they’re seasoned simply, and to good effect, with salt and pepper.
New entrees include chicken paprikash ($13.95). A boneless, partially skin-on breast is sauteed and finished with an excellent sauce of sweet paprika, cream and chicken stock that tastes house-made.
Another new item is beef stroganoff ($13.95). Cubes of beef (some of which need better trimming) are cooked in a reduction of red wine and meat stock. Given the rich flavors, the dollop of sour cream on top is almost irrelevant.
Two new savory strudels are available. The salmon strudel ($12.95) is wrapped in a flaky strudel casing along with a bit of rice and broccoli. It is given a cream sauce seasoned with dill and a smattering of grated cheese. It is accompanied by mixed salad greens with a competent balsamic vinaigrette served on the side.
The same salad accompanies the chicken strudel ($12.95), which is said to be made with white- and dark-meat pieces of Ohio-raised chicken. The chicken is wrapped in strudel with ham, mushroom and Ohio Swiss cheese. The dominant flavor is chicken, with the rest of the ingredients acting as a supporting cast. The large strudel is placed on a bed of simply made mushroom sauce.
The house-made coffee ice cream is said to be made with some Kahlua. What’s important is the variety of coffee flavors. Compared to a one-note coffee ice cream, this is a chord.
The strawberry-champagne ice cream, which is also made on the premises, is rich but elegant. It features frozen pieces of strawberry.
The new plum tart (zwetschgenkuchen, $3.50 a slice) is notable for the use of slices of fresh plum instead of the more common plum jam. They’re held attractively in a cake seasoned with almond and a bit of cinnamon. A streusel topping provides sweetness.
The wine list is one of the most food-friendly and consumer-friendly in the region.
A 2011 Givry is estate-bottled for $25, an astoundingly low price for a real Burgundy. Pinot-noir lovers can choose a regional Burgundy, light-bodied and fragrant, for only $22 a bottle, or $6 a glass.
Whites include a true white Bordeaux for $5 a glass or $19 a bottle, with nice herbaceous aromas of sauvignon blanc and semillon and excellent acidity.
The bottom line is that there are quite a number of food-appropriate wines of good quality for less than $20 a bottle. There is even a grower-produced Champagne for $49 a bottle — close to half the norm.