Since moving to El Paso almost two years ago, we had heard a lot about the restaurant Crave. Richard and I were finally had the opportunity to check out Crave for ourselves this weekend. Crave has locations on both the Eastside and Westside, and we visited the Eastside location on a Saturday evening. As we walked inside, we were immediately greeted by a friendly hostess and led out to a beautiful table on the patio. It was a fantastic evening for patio dining, and Crave has a really great patio setting. A little later on in the evening, the staff lit a fire pit which made the patio an even more beautiful and inviting setting! The downside was that we weren’t able to get many food photos, due to the rather dark outside setting. But take our word for it….Crave was quite a treat!
The decor at Crave is quite modern with clean lines, with very interesting metal tables and chairs. The decor perfectly suits the place and the menu, and it felt very urban. Not long after we sat down, our server arrived and took our beverage order. He made some excellent wine recommendations during our meal and we soon were able to relax on that lovely patio with some tasty Malbec.
Richard could not resist ordering the Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp as an appetizer. This dish soon arrived, very attractively arranged and topped with a smoked paprika aioli. Richard absolutely loved this dish and stated it was some of the best bacon-wrapped shrimp he has ever had (and he’s sampled quite a variety of them).
There were lots of great-sounding menu items. I’d heard good things about the Buttermilk-Fried Chicken and Waffles as well as the burgers. But Richard and I both were in a steak mood. Richard loves his ribeyes, so he ordered the Ribeye with an ancho-espresso rub, along with sides of French fries and the sweet and spicy cucumber salad. I went with the Beef Tenderloin (which is pan roasted with thyme and brown butter), with the roasted wild mushrooms and the green chile mac and cheese as sides.
While waiting for our entrees, we enjoyed taking in the scene on the patio. There were plenty of people there throughout the evening, but tables were nicely spaced and it never seemed loud or noisy. It was so nice and relaxing! We also were visited during the evening by the assistant manager, who was going from table to table and talking with all the restaurant customers about their meals and their experiences thus far. In addition, the restaurant manager (J.C.) came by our table to make sure that we were enjoying our time at Crave. We were so impressed with the level of service that we received. We usually note the names of servers and all the staff who visit our table and hate that we missed some names on this visit. But to J.C. as well as our server and the assistant manager….our hats are off to you. You all did a great job!
Once our meals arrived, we dug in. And wow…this was some good stuff! Richard loved the rub on the ribeye, and he said that the fries were perfectly seasoned. The cucumber salad blew him away, and he said that it reminded him of the cucumber salad he used to get back in New York City….it had a bite to it! Our server said that not that many people tend to order that side dish, but I know that Richard will likely be ordering it on every visit! As for my meal, the beef tenderloin was delicious and the thyme and brown butter was the perfect complement to the steak. The roasted ‘shrooms were excellent, and oh my….the mac ‘n cheese. I do love me some good mac ‘n cheese and this was some tasty stuff. I was told that the green chiles were Hatch chiles, and this mac ‘n cheese had a good kick to it. Mmmmmm!
Richard was too full for dessert, but you know me…..no such thing! I was ready for something good ‘n sweet, and I ordered up the Barely Baked Cookie with Vanilla Bean Gelato. It came cooked up in a little skillet, and it truly was a “barely baked” choco-chip-type cookie that was nice and gooey. That good gooey hot cookie dough combined with the gelato….now that is my idea of a dessert! It was so good! I can see more of that dessert in my future! But I must admit that there were several other tempting things on the dessert menu, as well (like the Pear Upsidedown Cake…. and the “Pot Brownie with Vanilla Bean Gelato….. and Homemade Caramel Sauce and the Chocolate and Hazelnut Cheesecake….and…and…I’ll force myself to stop now).
We both thoroughly enjoyed our dinner at Crave. Everything was just so good, from the nice patio seating to the excellent service and the delicious food. From what we’ve heard, Crave will be opening some new restaurants in the near future on the Westside (including a restaurant specializing in burgers as well as a steakhouse). We can’t wait to try those out!
Crave Kitchen and Bar is located on the eastside at 11990 Rojas Dr. El Paso, TX 79936