I consider myself as an average guy so I felt a little uncomfortable walking into Needless Markups . . . I mean Neiman Marcus. So why was I there in the first place? Well, you may or not know that there is a restaurant on the fourth floor of the department store called The Rotunda. Yes, it is kind of frou-frou, but the bottom line is that the food is awesome!
I started with some mango iced tea. It’s not sweetened, but I really liked it and how it came in a nice big bottle. It cost as much as Celine Dion water in Las Vegas, but I guess it was expected when you look at where you are eating.
To start, we were given nice, warm pop over and strawberry butter. I personally like it better than Wayfare Tavern’s just because of the strawberry butter alone. The butter is sweet, but not jammy. I love how it just melts when it hits the warm pop over which is light and fluffy. It was so good, I had to ask for another one.
My appetizer was the lobster bisque. This is by far the best lobster bisque I have ever had! Also, at $9.00, I think it is reasonably priced for what you get. First, it was served in a nice big bow, and second, it was loaded with big chunks of lobster meat. I know some places put alcohol in their bisque, but I don’t think this one had any, or at least it was very light, which I like. The soup base itself, was very flavorful and creamy. I cleaned my bowl up!
The other appetizer we had was the lobster spring rolls. This was my least favorite dish just because I don’t think this was worth the price for what we got. What I really found disappointing was that the crispy wrapper. The outside was fine, but the rice paper wrapping on the inside was still limp and didn’t get crispy at all. I don’t know if it was supposed to be like that or if it was under-fried and not crispy all the way. As for the filling, that was good, but it kind of got overwhelmed by the sweet chili sauce (which is just from a bottle, bought from any Asian market).
I don’t know if our waiter forgot to bring us the consume, but we had to ask for it. What makes this so awesome is that the liquid is so clear, but it is full of flavor. If you are not familiar with what this consume is, it basically is watered down chicken stock, but this was not salty at all. Plus, it came with a tiny biscuit to nibble on. It was nice and flaky on the inside and kind of looks like a tiny empanada without meat.
For my main dish, I had the braised rosemary lamb shank and was served with some greens and risotto. The lamb shank itself was awesome! It was cooked to perfection and was very tender. You don’t even need a knife to cut into it. Honestly, I have no idea how they are able to plate the lamb shank without it falling apart. The meat was juicy and came with au jus that didn’t overpower the taste of the meat. Also, the portion of this dish is huge. With everything else I ate before this, I only managed to finish my vegetables and eat only half of the lamb shank. This only thing I didn’t care for was the risotto. I felt that it lacked taste. I guess a little salt could have helped, but I usually don’t like adding that in. I also thought that it was a little watery. I would have preferred it to be a little heavier and creamier and would have liked a longer grain of the rice. I think adding mushrooms to it to make it more textural and to add some flavor would have made this a spectacular dish.
The other dishes we had was the lobster club and the mushroom ravioli. The lobster club was pretty much a BLT with lobster and avocados. I love how there are chunks of lobster in the sandwich andI think it was definitely worth the price for what you get. As for the mushroom ravioli, it was nice and light for someone who wasn’t too hungry. I wish there was more sauce to make it a little heavier, but it was still good.
Lastly, for dessert, we ended with a box of cookies. They were served in a nice silver box and came with the recipe card so you can make them at home. I really liked these cookies because the chocolate chips were espresso flavored which added a nice little kick to them. They were crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside, just how I like them.
Overall, having lunch at The Rotunda was very nice. The only thing I would change is sitting around people who have had one too many plastic surgeries in their life. It’s kind of gross seeing a lot of women with faces that are so tight, you can’t tell what their expression is. Plus most of the people there are kind of flashy, so I don’t feel entirely comfortable there. but for the experience and the food, I would definitely recommend you try it at least once in your life. If you don’t like, then you don’t have to go back. I know what will make me go back is the lobster bisque on its own, but that just me.
Food: 4.35 / 5
Service: 3.5 / 5
Atmosphere: 4 / 5 (I like the dome area, but you have to sit by the window for the best seats, but then I don’t really feel comfortable in this setting feels a little uptight)