by Steven Doyle
We met up with a very enthusiastic Michael Martensen, owner of Proof + Pantry in One Arts Plaza, who was pleased to chat up his new menu which is all about Thai cuisine and we couldn’t have been more pleased.
Now in its third year on the plaza Proof + Pantry seems to have unlocked the code for sustaining a good business model at a location which has had its moments in restaurant history. The key is obviously a fantastic cocktail program, which Martensen has this shining ability to perform, and one seriously good menu which offers staples that will most likely never be removed. These items include their tenderloin with truffled whipped potatoes, a crazy good dish of mussels, burrata, you get the idea. But the seasonal side of the menu is where all the fun begins.
Last season guests witnessed a host of offerings from Italy including fresh pastas such as a brown butter gnocchi and a linguine bolognese. Rich and hearty fare to carry you through the cooler months like only an osso bucco may provide.
This season is all about light and fresh but with bold flavors of Thailand. Consider a Pork Loin, Fried Vermicelli, Green Papaya, Bell Pepper and Fish Sauce, or a Soft Shell Crab, White Mushroom, Fried Rice and Green Curry. Both delicious and fresh.
Then there is a Crispy Pork Belly, Cucumber, Sticky Rice, Scallion, with Fish Sauce that is seriously delicious with its crisped skin of the pork and tender under layers of rich meatiness. The sticky rice makes a cooling and comfortable accompaniment.
As we approach opera season and with the many fantastic series of musicals in the Arts District gearing up it will be a perfect time to check in a Proof + Pantry once again.