The waiter will hand you a menu as you are seated at this cozy Sacramento restaurant, just as waiters do everywhere. You’ll probably want to give it a quick scan. But don’t get too involved in it. The “real thing” is yet to come along.
The “real thing” is what happens when co-owner Adam Chaccour arrives at your table to recite the night’s specials in the remnants of his Lebanese accent. It’s the pre-dinner show.
We were there as a party of six, which happened to be the same number of fish dishes on special that night – salmon, halibut, sturgeon, Chilean sea bass, scallops and crab. Then came the meat dishes – lamb, pork, beef and veal. And there were half a dozen appetizer specials.
With six people ordering a variety of appetizers and entrees, we were able to sample enough different dishes to know Moxie is true to the slang definition of its name: know-how. This restaurant knows how to deliver the goods.
I ordered a special appetizer – ground fillet mignon wrapped in filo dough and fried like an open ended egg roll. It was sensational. It also was enough food to have been shared by three of us. Same for Jennifer’s appetizer of crab stuffed Chinese style dumplings. Either of these two first courses easily could have passed for mains. Edie’s proclaimed the crab cakes the best ever; there was enough for two people.
Jennifer’s loin of lamb was perfect – full of flavor, tender and beautifully presented. We could have split it and had plenty of food. She ate about half of what was on the plate. My veal picatta was a hefty portion of veal with a generous side of pasta and more vegetables than one should pile on a plate that already includes four healthy pieces of veal and a pile of pasta. The veal was tender and perfectly seasoned. The pasta in olive oil with garlic was a great accompaniment. The vegis went untouched. Too much food.
Here’s the dilemma: you are going to the theater after dinner; you hate to throw out food. Do you really want to leave lamb or halibut in the car to take home hours later?