A Wintry Mix of Satisfaction and Comfort at Lana:
by Robin Riebman
If you haven't had duck then you may expect it to taste gamey, or funky, but it doesn't. Duck is mild and tender, and the crispy cap of fat makes it seem like pork belly and filet mignon melded together to make a new hybrid meat. Just try to refrain from wanting to eat that.
Chef John Ondo has offered duck on the menu at Lana for all of the nine years he has been in business. This season a confited leg tantalizingly leans on braised kale, and roasted root vegetables, while the breast is fanned out atop a sweet potato puree opposite a sweet cherry gastrique.
All of the dishes on Lana's menu are “old-world” inspired with a dramatic presentation. New seasonal preparations include a housemade potato gnocchi and Italian sausage with Calabrese peppers, shaved parmesan, broccoli and toasted bread crumbs, Short Rib prepared with roasted cauliflower and a red wine jus, a Shrimp “Cassoulet”, and Scallops with bagna cauda.
Traditional flavor combinations and fresh ingredients prepared with care are guaranteed to please.
It might be easy to skip Lana when looking for a restaurant downtown since it sits just off the main drag at Rutledge and Cannon, but you shouldn't. Lana's cozy atmosphere and prices that actually match the portion size are well worth the walk, especially when you can easily find street parking in a three block radius. Expect comfort when dining at Lana and you won't be let down.