You had me at Cucumber Martini! Seriously, though—Five-Sixty, Wolfgang Puck’s new culinary venture in Dallas, is a surprising treat for vegetarians and vegans alike. My friend Sara and I visited the hotspot atop Reunion Tower last night with the intentions of catching up over a nice bottle of wine and light finger foods. After reviewing the pricey wine list (even normally dirt-cheap Spanish wines were nearing the $100 mark), we settled on a couple of Cucumber Martinis instead. Made with muddled cucumbers and basil, the mojito-style gin martinis were, for lack of a better word, über-smart!
In truth, Five-Sixty’s dinner menu was not at all vegan or vegetarian friendly, but the sushi menu proved feast enough for both of us. We decided to start our martini munchies with a vegetable maki roll and an order of tempura eggplant. While the eggplant’s miso sauce was deliciously jammy and tart, the eggplant itself was slightly undercooked. Then we were given the news that the sushi bar ran out of rice, so there would be a long wait for our maki roll. So far…not impressed. But while we waited for our maki roll, Sara and I enjoyed several other delightful dishes. Much like Spanish Pimientos Padrón, our sautéed Asian peppers were nicely prepared and fun to eat (you never know when you’ll get a hot one), and the tempura green beans were fabulous when dipped in the accompanying house soy sauce!
Sushi chef, Hiroyuki Fujino, visited with us to explain the rice situation and offered us a complimentary platter of assorted vegetables. The tasty dish included house pickled cucumbers, eggplant, and fresh asparagus. Creamy in taste and texture, the pickled eggplant was, hands down, the best part of the platter. And although I really didn’t need any more food, I had to sample the maki roll that did finally make it to our table. The modest looking roll appeared average, but there were definitely some interesting new flavors I hadn’t experienced in a vegetable maki roll before. I picked one slice apart to try to figure out its contents but, admittedly, I had already imbibed too much of my martini to make a fair analysis (no judgment, please). Regardless, it was wonderful and well worth the wait!
Throughout the evening, Sara and I continued to comment on the great service at Five-Sixty. It’s no secret that Dallas diners can be high-maintenance, and for such a busy night, we were impressed to have received such warm and special attention. Amid the motley crew of businessmen and plastic divas, it’s nice to know a couple of thirty-somethings can enjoy a fabulous vegan dining experience at one of the city’s new “it” places!
300 Reunion Blvd