Last night, I was at Fuel for their Stoney Paradise Farms Dinner with Blackwood Lane Winery. The place was teeming with restaurant regulars and occasional gourmands. Also in attendance, but on the outside looking/glaring in, were a total of, oh, five demonstrators on hand to protest the fact that: a) our main course was a whole suckling pig b) stuffed with foie gras and c) I was scheduled to box a kangaroo as part of the pre-dessert entertainment. In the end, dinner was spectacular, I scored a TKO in the fifth, and those forlorn protesters completed yet another in a looooong line of a fruitless demonstrations. This one, by the way, was particularly pointless as the placed was packed, EVERYONE ate foie gras, and the room was so raucous and lively that the indignant shrieks of placard-toting idiots went relatively unnoticed. Like most militant vegetarians, they grew quickly weary following a few hours of vigorous holier-than-thou chastising and headed home to their lentil pot pies and hair weave pillows. Anyway, while they were there, outside, satisfying their egos with their self-absorbed theatrics, we were inside satisfying out appetites with an amazing five course dinner comprised of…
As the name implies, a little amusement for the mouth. Actually, more “somewhat interesting” than amusing.
Showing off some of the fresh produce from Stoney Paradise Farms. Clockwise from left to right – 1) Slicked tomatoes with shaved pecorino. Fondy and I were of two minds on this one. I really enjoyed the dish. Fondy wasn’t a fan. 2) Three luscious, sweet little tomatoes in tomato consomme and basil oil. By far our favorite. 3) Green tomato. Simple but excellent. This one was served with a lovely glass of white wine – Blackwood Lane Chenin Blanc 2008.
Holy smokes! Did this course take us by surprise. I was looking ahead to the suckling main course and was thoroughly blown away by this heavenly marriage of eggplant, zucchini, pasta and peppers. A creation of Chef Ted’s, it’s a dish I wouldn’t hesitate to order if it was on the regular menu. This was served with another glass of white, a Blackwood Lane Chardonnay 2005 that was offensively oaky. One sip was enough to pucker my eyeballs. As it turns out, the wine was corked.
They paraded the main course around the room before toting it back to the kitchen for carving.
Tender, crispy, and utterly delicious. In case you’re wondering, that’s the ear on the upper left. Alas, it made for tough eating. The rest of the pig was sublime though. It was served with a lovely glass of red, the Black Lane Reference 2006.
This is a dessert I normally wouldn’t order provided there was anything else on the menu – and yet, I enjoyed it immensely. The cheesecake had a wonderful little kick while the grape sorbet was a revelation. This course was accompanied by a Blackwood Lane “Merlot” Port 2oo8 that both Fondy and I loved.
So a good time was had by all. Looking forward to the next big foodie feast.
Well, I find myself in a position where I am forced to make a public apology to our ever-lovable Executive Producer’s Assistant Ashleigh. For what? I’m not entirely sure. Something to do with a jacket, a monkey, and a size 8 text message. To be honest, I wouldn’t at all be surprised if she had misheard and attributed somebody else’s passing comment to me. Y’know, it happens all the time. Someone walks by and says something while I’m doing my afternoon mouth exercises. My lips are moving and, to the casual observer, it may look like I’m talking – but I’m actually not. Anyway, in the interest of maintaining inter-office peace and being gentlemanly and ensuring that she doesn’t adulterate any of my future lunch orders, I’d like to take this opportunity to offer my sincerest official apologies.
And to post some silly pictures of her.