Saturday, December 12, 2009

Andy’s Birthday Dinner at Heron’s Restaurant

We had a phenomenal birthday celebration last night at The Umstead Hotel and Spas’ : Herons Restaurant. The environment was lovely, we were well attended to by the wait staff, and the food was fantastic.

I took lots of photos, so I’ll let them speak for themselves…

Gorgeous flower table setting: the bottom had a few smooth stone rocks with crystal clear water, then the live flower and greenery.

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I enjoyed a Hummingbird Nectar cocktail: Prosecco with a hint of Limoncello

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While Andy got his standard Bombay gin martini, up high, dirty with two olives

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We placed our order…

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and were then treated to an amuse bouche of salmon tartar with thyme and mango – this certainly got our taste buds dancing.

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Followed by two petite breads – multi-grain baguette and a savory pimento cheese scone. Both were fantastic and the prefect amount, especially the scone.

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His appetizer: Vanilla Poached Lobster - Parsnip Puree, Warm Buttered Tangerine, Almonds (blurry photo). This was possibly his favorite thing of the evening, it was a uniquely and perfectly paired dish.

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Her appetizer: Autumn Mushroom Soup
White Truffle Custard, Pine Nuts, Pickled Shallot. This was so velvety and exquisite, it was pleasurable to eat.

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The petite breads were so good we both requested just a bit more, this time I went with the regular baguette and another pimento cheese scone that was shared by the two of us.

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Her salad: Oak Lettuce - White Figs, Duck Prosciutto, Hazelnuts, Banyuls Vinegar. It was delicious I loved the sweet vinegar dressing and the crunch of the toasted hazelnuts, my very favorite nut.

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His salad: Herons Signature Caesar - Parmesan Crackers, Fresh Anchovy, Crispy Poached Egg. He had quite the fancy display.

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His entrée: Spice Crusted Venison loin - Sweet Potato, Glazed Quince, Black Trumpet Mushrooms. His venison was very tender, the quince was like spiced apples and the sweet potatoes were the prefect pairing.

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Her entrée: Seared Organic Salmon - Braised Fennel, Toasted Sunchoke Butter, Chanterelles. Cooked to the chefs recommendation of medium-rare the salmon was tender, moist, and flakey. I enjoyed pairing my bites with a slice of fennel and a dip of sunchoke butter – so good.

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This girl’s meal can’t be complete without a taste of something sweet – they all sounded great…

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He went with a 20-yr tawny port: I tasted cinnamon, vanilla, and a caramel-molasses. He also enjoyed a regular coffee.

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I got a decaf latté and…

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Creamed Cheese Donuts, Smoked Vanilla Parfait with Apple Sauce “Grand-mere”. The bottle layer was warm spiced, sautéed apples, then a chilled parfait layer (similar to vanilla ice cream), topped with warm, crunchy donuts with a apple cider glaze.

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To conclude the meal we were treated to an after dinner choice of three sweets: he got the handmade bon bon and I got the pecan praline.

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We both had a phenomenal time and towards the end of the meal found ourselves discussing upcoming celebrations that we could use as an excuse to come back soon.

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Catherine said...

Eveything looked fantastic! The food look delicious and the table setting is beautiful!

sarah said...

that looks wonderful -- so unique and fun!!! i can't wait to try it out sometime soon.