The renovation has the feel of a quiet, modernized update while somehow retaining the simple elegance that original founders Ron and Peggy Weiss and operating partner Jeffrey Weinberger created back in 1975. The bar seems more open and a little more plush with the addition of tufted blue suede settees and detailed finishing touches like contemporary chandeliers and sconces. The general layout is the same with a series of dining areas that flow across the building, but with the added detail of new wallpaper here, new artwork there, making it fresh and reinvented. The warm, welcoming feeling that is the hallmark of Jeffrey's was ever present. Long time server, Johnny Guffey, (who has been on staff for over 30 years) is still there, which brings that special feeling of the original establishment.
We sat in the farthest dining room close to the window that allows diners to catch a view of the chefs in action. With Larry McGuire working alongside his staff, including chef de cuisine, Josh Hines, and pastry chef, Rebecca Meeker, we knew we were in good hands. Among the 4 of us, we ordered a variety of items. The Starlite Warm Spinach Salad consisting of poached egg, roasted fingerlings, melted cambozola and maple bacon vinaigrette, is an incarnation of the famous delicious salad served at Starlite (sadly now closed), a restaurant where both Hines and McGuire worked. We sampled a bacon thyme scone and a butter croissant from the pastry cart, served with strawberry black pepper jam and lemon apricot kumquat marmalade. I tried the scone which had a wonderful texture (feathery on the inside, crispy on the outside), subtle flavor and paired well with both spreads. The marmalade was a standout, described by my son as "an explosion of flavor".
I ordered the Lamb Sausage and White Bean Sofrito with baked eggs, herbs and radish salad with a grilled baguette. This was an egg dish I never tried before--the combination worked well and was very filling. One of my sons had the Spelt and Brown Butter Waffle with house made mascarpone, hazelnuts, pickled strawberries and maple syrup. The bite I had was sweet and savory. The Wood Oven Baked 9 Grain Pancake with roasted grapefruit syrup and clotted cream was ordered by my husband and came a tad late to the table since the chef was not happy with the result of the first one made, so it was offered as a complimentary item. Once it arrived, we were all impressed with its massive size and its wonderful taste--it had a nutty quality and sweetness from the grapefruit. My husband noted it was almost like bread pudding. The Duck Confit Crepe with leek and potato griddle cake, morrels, currants, sunny up egg and duck demi glace was a stand out ordered by my youngest son. The morrels, the griddle cake and the crepe with the duck were a genius combination that harmonized so well. Everyone wanted a second bite. Dessert was out of the question since the portions here are so generous. We received a nice treat with our Stumptown coffee ordered at the end of the meal. Our attentive waiter brought us a selection of chocolates ranging from pistachio to salted caramel. Jeffery's is back in a big way and I predict it has a long life ahead. (Cathy)