Hatfield's - Tasting menu?
I will be at Hatfield's tomorrow for dinner. I called to inquire about the items I could expect on the menu. I was met with a bit of ambiguity and secrecy as if I were a spy trying to uncover a master plan. I was told a fish, bird & meat course, but no details nor any other info. Is there a cheese course, how many apps, etc... The young lady answering the phone would not give anymore details. This all has to do with an attempt to bring a few bottles from my collection to pair. I don't get all the top secret stuff...
So, if any of you could detail any recent tasting menus at Hatfield's, I would be ever so grateful. Despite the restaurants animosity, I am looking forward to our dinner.
Thank all for your thoughtful replies. To clarify, the young lady answering the phone in the day seemed rather unhelpful and unresponsive. She remarked that I would not be able to get anymore specific information from anyone else.
I'm aware of the spirit behind tastings and the rotation of fresh products. I was interested in examples of courses and not the specifics of our particular menu. If there was a fois gras course I wanted to be able to bring a Sauternes. That said, I had a delightful coversation with Karen yesterday and all is well. She was able to convey a sense of what I could expect, precisely what I was seeking.
Here's what I have on que:
'90 Dom Perignon
'05 Von Hovel Oberemmeler Hutte Spatlese
'98 Arnoux Vosne Romanee Suchots
'01 Font de Michelle "Etienne Gonnet" Chateauneuf du Pape
I enjoyed my tasting menu at Hatfield's, but my critique would be that it lacked a bit of creativity in the sense that there was too much overlap between the courses. I don't want to color your impression by giving specific examples, but a general example would be a dinner party where the host decides to use hoisin sauce for his duck, for his BBQ ribs, and for the salmon glaze.
I think there's still value in being surprised, as it also allows the chef to improvise. That being said, if you want to scope out what I had, here's the full report off my blog:
friday is a great day to have the tasting menu at hatfield's. thats usually the day the chef goes to the fish market in the morning and brings back the freshest most amazing fish for the first course crudo.
my friends were delighted by the flight they had a few weeks ago.
normally there isnt a cheese course and i too am surprised by your experience with the reservationist. i am sure she wasnt trying to be secretive. it is true that the menu changes depending on whats freshly available, perhaps she didnt want you to expect something specific and then be surprised when you arrived that day.
as for wine pairings i would leave myself in the hands of the knowledgeable staff. plus i believe corkage can be a bit much.
have a lovely dinner!
Carter here, bring medium weight wines, burgundy-focused, and you will be fine.
Their food is very good, yet seldom heavy in nature.
The hesitancy probably has to do with what they find at the market, veggie-wise, and then of course the saucing that Quinn decides to put with the entrees.
Seldom is a cab needed in my experience. Stick to the Burgs, medium-weight whites, and I think you will be just fine.
You might look at their wine list, and get an idea of where that list tends to go, and I am sure they will be pairing food to some of those wines.
www.hatfieldsrestaurant.com for that info.
ps - never done their tasting menu while having had about 5 meals there.
Hatfield's tasting menu is an excellent way to go. We eat at Hatfield's at least once a month, but tend to order ala carte or go with the always good (and well-priced) daily market menu. But we threw caution to the wind on New Year's Eve and decided to go in for the tasting menu. New Year's Eve tends to be an evening during which most restaurants phone it in -- but not Hatfield's. It rocked. For details of that meal (the "Menu Luxe" tasting menu), check out: http://infinitefress.blogspot.com/200...
They don't do a cheese course, but you'll probably have a few amuse bouches and perhaps two or more appetizers. While they do tend to include some samplings of items on the regular menu, there are surprises in store, which I suspect have everything to do with what's locally available that day and with what Quinn and Karen feel like doing in the kitchen.
And although you may want to bring wine, don't hesitate to hand yourself over to the whole Hatfield's experience of their selected wine pairings with your meal. As oenophiles, my husband and I have never been disappointed.
I am surprised that you found any animosity at Hatfield's. Seriously, the Hatfields and their employees could not be any friendlier. Enjoy!
Depending on how far ahead they plan out their tasting menu, they may not know until the day of - so try again tomorrow. (Josie, for example, plan their Wed. tasting menus based on what they acquire at Farmer's market that very day.)
Bug generally, short of a spontaneous tasting like Opus -- tasting menus should be available ahead of time so folks with dietary restrictions or allergies can opt out. And even at Opus, they'll accomodate any restrictions the diner may have.
Lucky you going to Hatfields. I loved my meal there -- somewhat minimalist/austere environment but the food was excellent. Did the tasting menu and it was for the most part just smaller versions of what they offered on the regular menu -- so the mysterious attitude is a bit bewildering, unless they've developed a new approach to the tasting menu.