Friday was my birthday. I was a bit ambivalent about the whole thing, it is just a number, right? But, my husband and family made sure it was a birthday I would not soon forget.
My husband and I dropped our daughter and the dog off at my parents’ around lunchtime on Friday. From there we headed to Washington, Va for a night at The Inn at Little Washington. We went there for my birthday once before, and my husband has declared it a treat for every five years.
Last time we went, it was a spur of the moment trip. My husband got tied up in meetings and a long weekend trip to New Orleans for my birthday had to be postponed. He felt bad, rang around and was able to get us dinner reservations at the Inn at Little Washington but not a room at the Inn…it was booked. But, they referred us to a wonderful little B&B across the street, called The Heritage House. We loved the quaint little inn, and the proprietors Gary and Michelle are just great. Not to mention, the breakfast is to die for. So, we chose to stay at Heritage House again and walked across to Inn at Little Washington for dinner.
We started out the evening with martinis in the bar, where we had the pleasure of meeting chef/proprietor, Patrick O’Connell. I’ll even admit I was a bit tongue tied….any foodie will appreciate he ranks up there with the best of the best.
Dinner was amazing, I started with “From our Hen House: Spinach and Cheese Filled Ravioli with Molten-Gold Center.” The ravioli was so perfectly thin and my husband and I were trying to figure out how a perfectly cooked egg yolk was placed so delicately inside. Mmmmm, so delicious.
From there, I had “Our Homemade Boudin Blanc (White Sausage) with Sauerkraut Braised in Riesling and Mustard Scented Apple Coulis.“ It was very good, although perhaps a bit much for me. Luckily my husband was happy to finish it.
Finally, I had “Beef Two Ways: A Pecan Crusted Barbequed Short Rib Paired with a Minature Filet Mignon Wrapped in Swiss Chard.” All I can say is I will be dreaming about this one. My husband cooks amazing short ribs and they are always a dinner party hit, but these….spectacular.
My husband indulged in seafood….starting with “A Mélange of Spicy Big Eye Tuna with Mango, Avocado, Crispy Shallots and Sake-Yuzu Sorbet.” I am not much of a seafood eater, but I’ll tell you this tuna was delicious! He then had a “Maine Diver’s Scallop Sauteed with Capers, Brown Butter and Lemon with Tiny Tomato Gnocchi.” He rounded out his main course with “Pan Roasted Maine Lobster with Braised Baby Bok Choy in a Fragrant Coconut Sauce Perfumed with Lemongrass.” Yummmm.
As if this was not all enough, for dessert I had “Southern Butter Pecan Ice Cream Sandwich with Hot Caramel Sauce” while Chris had “Ferdinand Point’s Classic “Marjolaine” Cake: Layers of Chocolate and Hazelnut Meringue with Raspberries.”
I am kicking myself this morning that I did not take pictures of the spectacular Inn and kitchen while I was there. The decor is beautiful having been created by Joyce Evans, a London stage and set designer. The dining room was comfortable yet spectacular. From the velvet banquettes and silk lampshades over top of each table, to the exquisite fabrics draped from the ceilings, it was the perfect refuge from a busy week and the bitter cold outside. Next time, there will be pictures!
As we were leaving town, I did manage to snap two quick photos. The first, the Heritage House where we stayed. The second, the front of Inn at Little Washington.
You’ll see from the pictures above that we got a bit of snow yesterday (about 5 inches) and the drive home was less than relaxing. But, we made it home safe and sound and then headed over to my parents’ house where we played cards and visited for the afternoon. My mom made my traditional birthday dinner that I’ve requested every year since I was little. A standing rib roast, roasted potatoes, popovers and salad and vegetable. My sister made my mom’s famous chocolate cake from scratch. Maddie is really understanding things better than she was at Christmas and had fun opening all of my presents…a new word which she was happy to repeat again and again. In all, it was an awesome birthday. Thanks to my wonderful husband and family! Now, back to the real world….