I recently had dinner at the Mustard Seed Bistro in Plantation, there are two locations, the other is in Cooper City. This hidden gem is a bustling mecca of locals. Seems as if everyone knows each other here in West Broward or at least at The Mustard Seed Bistro. Chef owner Tim Boyd and his wife Lara are working owners; they greet guests, Tim is on the line cooking and expediting orders, Lara bakes the famous Mustard Seed Bistro Cupcakes and just like their namesake the Mustard Seed Bistro has grown from the smallest of seeds into the largest of trees.
Tim Boyd has been around the South Florida (and beyond) culinary scene for over 20 years always keeping that low profile. Slow and steady. Not seeking the limelight, not showy, not into all the PR hype. Tim cooks. Period. The Boyd’s story is the true “build it and they will come” dream come true. Talent, hard work, faith and a loyal team is the fuel that makes this great machine work. Sit in the dining room at The Mustard Seed Bistro and watch all this go on around you; you can feel the positive energy envelope you. I actually said that to Tim while I was having dinner. His servers are positive and upbeat; none of that edgy attitude that you catch at other restaurants. It’s actually pleasant to sit there to eat, drink and spend money. That is the key to this restaurant’s success. The locals I swear come in by the bus load I’ve never seen anything like it. Granted it’s a small bistro but one minute the restaurant is empty and bam! it fills up like gushing water from a broken dam.
The menu is Bistro style food with a European flair and a whole lot of Americana thrown in for good taste. I was there for dinner this particular night and opted to throw caution to the wind and let Tim and his Chef de Cuisine, Noam surprise me with their daily tasting menu. A tasting menu at the Mustard Seed Bistro is a multi-course experience created at the whim of the chef. It’s always a surprise, and tonight it was a delight. If you eat out a lot tasting menus break up the monotony of same ole, same ole.
My dinner was four courses with a wine pairing for each course. The starter was a sweet and spicy tuna sashimi with green beans artistically presented in a crispy wanton-esque cone. This was fun to eat so many textures and flavors going on it was one of those dishes you wanted to last while sipping your sauvignon blanc. This inventive starter was a deliciously fantastic segue into the next course of a blackened sea scallop served atop of a black bean cake with a “bursting with flavor” warm tomato salad and a yellow chili butter sauce. This dish my my mouth dance! The flavors were full of zip and awakening, I said to Tim, “do you have a straw so I can suck up all that extra sauce?” (he just looked at me and laughed!) at this point I was totally digging this tasting menu. For the meat dish I was served an herb smoked duck breast with a pork gastrique, purple peruvian potatoes and steamed broccoli rabe garnished with a poached pear. This dish had the perfect balance of all things that create harmonious flavor. There was something about the broccoli rabe, when I asked Noam what it was I knew that’s why it was so completely different from all other sauteed rabe dishes. Not going to tell you what it is, you’ll have to go to the Mustard Seed Bistro and find out for yourself.
For dessert I had the famous Mustard Seed Bistro chocolate caramel cupcake. I know baked goods. I know “really good” baked goods. This was the best cupcake I have ever had. It was like eating air, definitely not a belly buster! Yes it’s about the mix and how you mix it but the frosting always makes or breaks the cake or cupcake in this case. This too just like the broccoli rabe, Lara has a secret. The secret is always in the ‘sauce’ this frosting is not some derivative of hardened butter cream but light, creamy and airy, so much so you’ll actually eat it. Lara makes about 70 cupcakes daily, three to four different types and usually sells out by the end of the day. You can stop in to buy one or one dozen but I do recommend you call ahead and place an order lest you find yourself cupcake-less when you need one the most. Click here to view photos of the dinner.
Mustard Seed Bistro 256 S University Dr, Plantation FL 33324 954-533-9326