Inox: Game Tasting Dinner
Friday, November 13 was a lucky day for the 30 of us who attended Inox Restaurant's first Game Tasting Dinner. My husband and I had learned about the special meal through an email; however the event was publicized on the restaurant's web site, on the "Events" page. (The detailed menu is still posted on the web site. To save me the effort of re-typing the detailed menu, I recommend interested folks look at the web site.)
The meal was a seven-course meal; seven dishes were paired with four different wines.
Here's the executive summary of the experience: Fantastic food and wine. Superb and inventive preparations. Gracious atmosphere coupled with an earnest effort to educate us about both the food and wine. (The somelier was particularly earnest and remarked that he had to reign in his wine geekiness and not overwhelm everyone with too much detail about wine production.)
Now for some details...
The dinner was served in a private room with diners seated at three tables. We did not know anyone at our table, but the conversation flowed easily. Not surprisingly, the primary topics were food and other restaurants.
In spite of the banquet conditions, the food was as tasty as if each dish had been individually prepared. The degree of doneness was correct. The presentation was appealing. The seasoning was spot on. Definite kudos for that major achievement! I've eaten plenty of indifferent food in private dinners in top restaurants.
My husband's and my favorite dish of the night was the soup course: Walnut soup was enriched with squab confit, Swiss chard, and lentils. This was, in turn, topped by a roasted squab breast. Our second favorite was the crowd's favorite: Bacon-wrapped boar loin. (When the chef spoke to the group near the end of the meal, he took a survey.)
Definitely a stellar experience. Incidentally, this was our third meal at Inox. Our first meal was a dinner ordered off the regular menu. The food was good, but not an indication of the heights of which the restaurant is capable. The second dinner was the special menu highlighting food from Julia Child's MASTERING THE ART (Volume 1). I wrote about that meal on the following thread:
Last night's meal will long linger in our memories!
Here's the link to the full menu on Inox's web site:
Incidentally, I realize that my original post doesn't have a lot of practical utility. The game dinner has taken place, and, except for the venison and foie gras dish, there's no overlap based on the regular menu that's now online. However, the Inox folks led everyone to believe there would be other game tasting dinners.
Funny you should ask. I'm on medicine that only "officially" allows me to have a glass of wine daily. When I dine out, I've been known to push that amount to the equivalent of 1 1/2 glasses.
When we signed up for the dinner, we asked about a non-alcohol option with the intention of my ordering one of the suggested wines. We were told that the cost would only be reduced by $25. With such a small difference, we decided that I would sign up for the full-wine version and sip as little of each type as I wanted. That's exactly what I did. The pairings definitely enhanced my experience that evening; I enjoyed the variety and the pairings. However, when we looked at the final bill, we noticed that the wine pairings, in fact, had cost $40 per person. At $40, I really wouldn't have made the decision I had made.
I'll never know if the wrong information I got was the result of the employee's error or if the person supplying the answer was winging an estimate. After all, this was Inox's first such dinner, and I may have been the first person asking that question.
The evening was memorable enough that this discovery did not ruin the experience.