Tallent - Bloomington IN
We finally made it back to one of our favorite restaurants - Tallent in Bloomington. It has been too long! As usual, it was delicious. I wasn't able to take my usual notes (we were with clients) so please forgive me!
We did the tasting menu and started with..
An amuse of tiny crab cakes with a remoulade sauce - I think everyone liked this, but Dave (oh you marvelous chef you) made for me a tiny chicken salad dressed with the remoulade so that I would have a similar taste but it wouldn't kill me. I appreciate so much that sort of effort, to make something special like that, but not make a big fuss over it.
Next was the Tartare and Carpaccio - a King River Salmon tartare with an avocado and a tomato beignet, and American snapper carpaccio with pickled onion and an herb salad on top. The tartare was so good with the avocado and the beignets were just silly good - truly I could have eaten a plate of those. The snapper carpaccio was loved by us all (especially Mr CF) and made me realise how much I miss a similar dish from a closed restaurant in Indy - sigh... wow.
Goat cheese ravioli served over sweet corn, chanterelle mushrooms and cherry tomatoes. I also think there was a bit of bacon in this. The mushrooms were almost like bacon in themselves, the corn was so sweet (and delicious - more on this later) and then the goat cheese ravioli added this creamy tartness to the whole thing... oh my!
Next was Snapper (I think it was snapper) served over the BLT risotto - perfectly cooked fish with incredible crisp skin over the risotto with bacon and cherry tomatoes, topped with a sprinkle of lovely herbs.
Poplar Ridge Rabbit loin served over chorizo polenta and a crispy something... oh that's awful I know... but it was a crispy little thing, tasted a bit meaty and a bit hushpuppy-ish and really good. The rabbit was moist and tender, the polenta was delicious and so was the mystery yummy thingy. Oh help... what was that? This is what happens when I don't take notes!
Next was a cheese course - Yay! Capriole Farms goat cheese with 25 year old basalmic vinegar and a dab of fabulous jam.
Dessert was fun - each couple got 2 different desserts, so we could switch with each other. First was a cormeal blueberry cake with corn ice cream - yes, corn ice cream <insert dancing> - I loved this! Second was the Dark and Stormy cake - a rum soaked sponge cake topped with ginger and lime sorbet and a swirl of caramel. The sorbet was very refreshing and the cake was enjoyed by all. But the corn ice cream! Was. So. Good!
I love this place! I wish I could go more often!
Well, Cookiefiend, I've been salivating ever since I read your post. My husband, daughter, and I went last night and had the tasting menu. Yowza! Since it was the first day of their Late Summer Menu, our meal was composed of small portions of their new offerings.
Amuse: Chilled Eggplant Soup with goat cheese and fried shallot. I could have happily downed a whole bowl of this intensely flavored elixir.
1st course: BLT Risotto with mascarpone, house-smoked bacon, fried green tomatoes, and watercress salad. So many of my favorite things on one plate! This was my favorite course, and I plan to go back soon and feast on a full-sized portion.
2nd course: Panzanella Salad with heirloom tomatoes, watermelon, olives, Capriole Julianna, and a crispy, thin toast. Lovely presentation of my favorite summer produce. Heartland Farm's Mr. Stripey tomato stole the show.
3rd course: Pan-Seared Red Snapper on a bed of fregula di sarda and diced summer veggies, olive and preserved lemon tapenade and 25-year-old balsamic. This sounds very "busy" but the flavors came together perfectly to complement the crisp-skinned fish.
4th course: Rabbit boudin (rabbit loin encased in garlicky rabbit sausage) on a bed of Maque Choux. This was splendid, a close second to the risotto.
Dessert: Unfortunately, the three of us were too sated to do justice to the Summer Corn Ice Cream on Zucchini Bread with a blueberry sauce.
In short, a meal to remember.
We brought the kids and their husbands for dinner a month or so ago and we all had the tasting menu. It was all grand -- the pork belly nearly brought one son-in-law to tears.
#1 or close on the list of my favorite things I have eaten this year was the butterscotch semi freddo. FABULOUS dessert.