Monday, September 24, 2012

1620 Savoy

"A new experience in fine dining."

1620 Market Street, Little Rock, Arkansas

After closing for a complete remodel and change of ownership, 1620 is now 1620 Savoy.  Same location, everything else is new.  While some may lament not having some of the old items on the menu, few will miss the old dark decor that was 1620.  And if it was the food after all that kept you coming back, you will not be disappointed in the new offerings. 

As you enter through the neon illuminated Art Deco entry, you are swept into a bright, black and white marble dining area with elegant seating and immediate bar access.  Designer/Manager Rick Qualls has done this up in a Paris style reminiscent of a Deco establishment in post-war France.  There are nooks and niches for privacy and intimate dining and drinking, and larger, elegant dining rooms for larger parties.  Two tastefully stocked bars are conveniently at hand.

On Fridays and Saturdays, after the restaurant's normal closing hours, it will convert to Club Savoy to continue the party until two in the morning.  Sunday brunch will begin October 7th.

Chefs Payne Harding, Tim Morton and John Masching have combined rare talents to form a striking and varied menu.  You can see the complete menu here:  1620 Savoy Menu.  We tried the Crispy Calamari and decided that is was the most perfectly prepared calamari we had ever tasted.  Crispy with none of the rubbery chewiness you often encounter in the big chains.  With a hint of  lime zest, the flavor was a home run and I could have eaten a pound or more of it.  The Phyllo Dough Pizza was a nice appetizer with buffalo mozzarella, roasted chiles, shitake mushrooms, and herbed tomato coulis all on a crisp phyllo dough crust.  Typically not a duck fan, I was bowled away by the Duck Savoy which was  juicy, flavorful medallions of duck with braised collard greens and roasted turnips.  I would try it again.

I look forward to trying some of the other dishes on the menu such as Miso-glazed Tasmanian Salmon, Spicy Cioppino and any one (or more) of the exquisite steak selections.

So, whether you were an old regular at the previous 1620, or have never been, this will certainly become part of your regular rotation.