September 14, 2010

Getting Off the Farm Part 1: The Food


Dressing Up

Last Friday night, My Baby and I got all gussied up, got off the farm and went out on a big date. A real date, where the man wears a jacket and tie and the lady wears heels, perfume and fancy undergarments. We are quite attached to our end-of-the-week routine of baking a pretty good pizza and curling up together to watch Washington Week in Review. It had to be a pretty enticing reason to dislodge us from our comfortable habit.

King Estate Winery hosted their annual Tower Club Harvest Moon Celebration, which is billed as their most special event of the year. The menu is what captured my attention:
Menu
Sea Scallops Cooked on Himalayan Rock Slab
Lamb Lollipops
Cured Salmon with Pickled Red Onions & Capers
Squash Ravioli with Nuts & Dried Fruits
Grilled Portobello Mushroom with Apricot Sauce
Assorted Harvest Pizzettes
~
Breast of Veal Stuffed with Pine Nuts & Raisins
Grilled Quail with Balsamic Glaze
Wild Mushroom Risotto with Lemon Cream
Roasted Carrots & Cauliflower
~
Croquembouche
Assorted Harvest Desserts

King Estate has many things going for it, one of which is the wonderful restaurant and food they serve. Every morsel is thoughtfully prepared with many ingredients coming directly from their own organic farm. This menu, we had a strong hunch, was going to be dynamite and we didn't want to miss it.
The evening was enchanting. Every detail was attended to. My apologies now for the quality of some of these photos. The low lighting and my camera skills aren't on even par yet, but I still want you to see how special this time was.

May I say how much I appreciate a proper greeting upon arrival? King Estate always extends a a warm welcome and makes sure that you have a glass in your hand right away, as though they really expected your company. You immediately sense that you are in good hands, and that things will be fun.
Everywhere we looked, there were pretty vases of estate-grown flowers, harvest arrangements of fruits and vegetables, and lots and lots of beautiful warm candlelight.
We first moved outdoors under tents for our first delicious nibbles. The stunning local and imported cheeses wowed me from the beginning.
Bellwether Farms Carmody, Miramont French Brie, Rogue Creamery Smoked Blue, La Mariposa Chubut, and Ferns Edge Fresh Chevre

From cheeses, we moved on to King Estate's house-cured salmon with colorful heirloom tomatoes from their farm, pickled onions and capers. With it's extraordinary vivid colors, visually, this was my favorite dish of the night.

House Cured Salmon

My favorite dish for flavor and dramatic flair was the sea scallops cooked to order on Himalayan Pink Salt Slabs. The slabs were subjected to high heated from below, turning into a griddle of sorts. The pink salt just barely "melts" into the scallop, offering a subtle brine to the sweet scallops. I confess that My Baby and I ate more than our fair share of these delicacies.

Sea Scallops on Himalayan Pink Salt Slabs
Or maybe this was my favorite...
Duck Liver Pate with Brandy and Oranges, and Terrine of Oxtail, Estate Vegetables and Pinot Noir

There were many dishes that I didn't get nice photos of, but you should at least know that the stuffed veal, lamb-chop "lollipops" and grilled quail were complete treats.

The squash ravioli topped with glazed nuts and dried fruits was inspired.

Assorted Desserts
Croquembouche, la Piece de Resistance

I'd only seen croquembouche in books and on television. It really is as stunning and delectable as I'd imagined.
Croquembouche "Topknot" of Spun Sugar

So as you can imagine, the setting and the food were spectacular. We were meeting some interesting people as well, listening to some terrific music, drinking some fine wines, and the evening ended with a magical, unexpected surprise. For that, stay tuned to Getting Off the Farm Part 2: The Wine Experience...

25 comments:

  1. I have never seen a Croquembouche at a restaurant! dang, amazing meal - I bet a great time. Great blog.

    ReplyDelete
  2. What an outstanding meal! Looks like you had a fabulous time :o)

    ReplyDelete
  3. WOW!!! The Croquembouche....wow! How amazing! This looks like such a great time!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. It looks like a beautiful and tasty night, worthy of a suit, tie, dress & high heels! Glad you had a great time. Theresa

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank you for joining us at the winery for the Tower Club Harvest Moon Celebration. We are glad you were so pleased with the experience. Thank you for sharing your photos and stories, it is great to see the event through the eyes of one of our honored guests. We hope to see you again soon. - Sasha

    ReplyDelete
  6. Ooooh oxtail confit? Never had it and it sounds wonderful! Yep the croquembouche certainly is stunning! Looks like you had fun :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh my goodness how stunning this all looks! It's so nice to have a real date night every now and then! I actually received some Himalayan salt plates for a gift recently (these are from Sustainable Sourcing https://secure.sustainablesourcing.com) and they have been really fun to use. Thanks for sharing your great night!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Wow, that looks like an incredible night. The food all looks delicious. What a special treat!

    ReplyDelete
  9. That looks like a great reason to break your usual Friday night routine! Everything looks amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  10. This makes us even more excited to spend your wedding day with You and Scott at King Estate Winery. It's not every day that a lady has the opportunity to enjoy such pleasurable dining and get a wonderful, loving son-in-law all on her 70th birthday. Thanks for sharing your love for life and fine eating with us. We'll see you there in 26 days.
    Love, Mom

    ReplyDelete
  11. Very well written and a fun read. Bradshaw Vineyards are proud to be grape growers for King Estate. They are a first class operation.
    Sorry to have missed this event but it is a long drive home to Jackson Hole, Wyoming. (The vineyards are in Oregon not on the Grand Teton.) Jim Bradshaw

    ReplyDelete
  12. Ohhh! The scallops are amazing! i want some now.

    ReplyDelete
  13. OHHHHHH....I am jealous. I must admit. I was just saying to the hubs the other day that we need to book a babysitter and get outta here! Well, at least to a nice dinner and maybe a movie if we can prop our eyelids open. This looks like soooo much fun! So unique and extravagant. I love that you share about places you go and things you do. It's such a nice little escape for us readers. That Croquembouche is stunning! I've seen them made on t.v. many times but never tasted one. Just lovely! Cheers, my dear!

    ReplyDelete
  14. That croquembouche looks amazing!!! It looks like you had a wonderful and appetizing date night!

    ReplyDelete
  15. All I can say is . . . HOLY, MOLY!!!!!
    Now that's what I call a date! What fun!

    ReplyDelete
  16. What an amazing spread! I love everything on that menu. Sounds and looks like such a beautiful date. It's so fun to get dressed up and be a part of something as nice as this.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Sounds like you had a lovely evening! Although your typical Friday night sounds like something we like to do to, I also understand the importance of stepping out of a comfort zone from time to time. My best to you!

    ReplyDelete
  18. I LOVE your visual tour! Thanks so much for sharing. I have to admit that the cheese bar is the one that made me swoon the most. Well, that and the scallops on the Himalayan pink salt. Wow.

    ReplyDelete
  19. What a wonderful evening! Your photos once again made me feel like I was there. These evening are so far and few between (at least for me!) that they become such a treat when they come around. So glad you had such a nice night!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Oh my goodness...Look at all of this fantastic food...and those pink sea salt slabs are amazing. I have never seen anything like that, but boy would I like to. Great post :)

    ReplyDelete
  21. Wow, wish I was there! I don't know what was my favorite or the crostini! Beautiful, I can only imagine what a great evening it must of been! Thanks for sharing it!
    -Gina-

    ReplyDelete
  22. What an amazing looking night. I wasn't there so of course the aromas and tastes are only second-hand!

    What I can say is that I am not surprised at all. When we tried the King Estate wines in May we were very impressed with them. This commitment to a first rate experience comes through in your photos and descriptions of the harvest dinner.

    How many days left?

    Thank You

    Jason

    ReplyDelete
  23. Hi m sam parker i am a designiner and now m working on blogs i m learn about the blogs when m searching blogs on google then i found your bolg its good for me because your bolg is very good your blogs desigin is very good i like it its realy help me to get an idea about how to design a blog

    ReplyDelete

Quick Linker