Rumor has it that after opening SixOneSix, the Eagle-based sequel to the acclaimed Boise eatery The Dish, owner and chef Jered Couch bought a house about a 7-iron away from the new restaurant and drives a golf cart to work. After two lengthy, decadent meals there last week, I'm considering giving into temptation, buying a three-wheel scooter and commuting alongside him.
Fans of The Dish may have heard that Couch's sweet potato pancakes and baked macaroni and cheese have migrated to SixOneSix. It's true, and couples of a frugal bent can order both, a salad, wine and dessert for a reasonable two-digit bill. However, I advise setting aside a chunk of money and time to explore SixOneSix's traditional French dishes like foie gras and coq au vin, and numerous more newfangled, long-titled dishes.
A few eyes probably stopped cold on the words "foie gras." Couch has a unique take on this controversial dish, which is a soft spread made from the liver of an overfed goose or duck. It's smooth, fatty and not at all liver-y, and the pickled cherries on the side are a brilliant complement. However, diners who have any interest in ordering the appetizer are advised to take a date who is also comfortable with it--not to avoid fights, but because it comes in a four-ounce sealed jar, and nobody, ever, anywhere, is advised to eat that much fatty foie gras by him or herself.
On the first night, a seasoned foie graduate and I split the great-as-ever potato pancakes and some disappointingly over-herbed escargots with a confusing but pleasant Caesar salad in a chipotle-lime dressing. He raved about the tart, earthy coq au vin served with mushroom ragout, truffle roasted polenta and red wine reduction. I preferred my slow-cooked lamb shank served with truffle potato puree, braised red cabbage and carrot flan--one of many unique pairings on the menu. On the next night, an open-minded foodie who was radiating a FFG (friend to foie gras) vibe joined me in a jar of the taboo goodness, alongside a delicately stacked arugula salad that thought it was a spinach salad, with red onion, pear, walnuts, blue cheese and bacon vinaigrette dressing. We further shortened our lifespans with bacon-wrapped scallops on an amazingly smooth parsnip puree, a pork chop and a salty and satisfying prosciutto-wrapped monkfish. Our lone health food was a bottle of local Hells Canyon syrah from the expansive wine list--local-heavy and all American, surprising given Couch's obvious taste for French cuisine. Then we napped.
The next day, I walked around the office with the remains of a pork chop poking out of my mouth like a chew toy. My co-workers gawked, but I made no apology. SixOneSix's food is too special to have to justify.
--Nicholas Collias prefers the Pacesaver scooter to the Zip'r.