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Cafe Soleil, Farragut West Metro

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Limited, reasonably priced wine list -- we ordered a Gruner and a zin, but were served a cab from the same vineyard. The red was not opened immediately as requested, and they had no decanter, so we asked for a pitcher and decanted it ourselves. Baked brie sub-par, rubbery rind, domestic? Smoked salmon supermarket-like, but nice presentation. Pistachio crusted salmon fine; lamb shank needed a bit more braising time, but acceptable. Frites excellent. Mashed potatoes crusted from sitting under warmer too long, not good.

Well-meaning server overheard that it was my birthday (we were grabbing dinner before an Improv show) and brought us unbidden a small chocolate cake with candle -- I HATE THAT! It offends me no end. And to top it off, the cake was awful -- ate one bite and quit. We never got to see the dessert menu. We will probably never go back for dinner.

Note to restaurants: Please ditch the birthday cakes. Some of us don't appreciate it at all. If we wanted something special done, we'd arrange it with the restaurant beforehand. If we can afford two bottles of wine, we can afford to buy our own desserts.

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