Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Food: The Brewster Inn

So for my birthday we went to the Brewster Inn in Cazenovia, NY.  I was told this place was pretty nice.  Judging from the menu on their website, I was totally stoked to go and excited to have a "fancy" dinner.  You know, cloth napkins, a wine list filled with stuff that's hard to pronounce, all in-house made foods including the salad dressing, etc.

Husband and I got dressed up into nice slacks and a button up shirt for him and nice slacks and a sweater for me.  I even wore heels, which is unheard-of for me.  I was excited.

We got there and the lobby was nothing short of magnificent.  Old mansion in gorgeous condition, and the restaurant looked beautiful.  The atmosphere was lovely, except that there was a wine bar in the restaurant filled with loud obnoxious people enjoying their wine so much that the husband and I couldn't talk much.  Not even close to the romantic whisperings I was hoping for on my birthday, for Pete's sake.

But the food!  In a word, delicious.  All made in-house from scratch.  And you could tell.  It was wonderful.

We ordered the following:

  • lump crab cake with tangy tomato butter (split as an appetizer)
  • house salad with honey mustard dressing (me)
  • smoked duck salad with wild greens, chevre, walnuts, and raspberry vinaigrette (husband)
  • pan-seared tournedos of beef (medium-rare) with a Burgundy cream sauce and chantilly potatoes (me)
  • black angus strip steak with sauteed mushrooms and sherry glazed onions and chantilly potatoes (husband)
  • Zabaglione with blueberries (husband)
  • chocolate mousse (me)
The crab cake was phenomenal.  I could have eaten 3 of them myself, but we split just the one.  The house salad was entirely satisfactory and the dressing was completely homemade, but I had a better one at The Clipper Inn in Clayton, NY a while back.  Husband loved the duck salad, because he loves duck. (I hate duck, for the record.)

So what are tournedos of beef?  I'll still be darned if I know.  It looked like small pieces of beef that had been pan-seared.  I'd guess it was a tenderloin cut because it was darn tender (and cooked to perfection at the just right amount of redness!).  The burgundy cream sauce was strong but I could have licked it up off the plate.  I settled for mopping it all up with my potatoes, which were spectacular.  Flavorful, creamy, cheesy mashed potatoes.  If I had the recipe, I'd do these for Thanksgiving instead of just mashing potatoes, but that's a whole 'nother ball of wax.

The strip steak was a huge hunk of beef, that looked like it had been cooked to perfection, smothered in onions and I couldn't find any mushrooms anywhere, but I was also a little distracted by my cute little tournedos.

Dessert was lovely.  I like chocolate mousse and I enjoyed this mousse just fine, though I was expecting fireworks, and I only got tingles.  The only disappointment was the dessert.  The 2 glasses of Malbec I had during dinner made me really happy - strong, robust, red, and everything I like in a red wine.

And alas, dear readers, I have no photographs.  It just didn't seem classy to take out my phone and snap photos of our meals after I read the "PLEASE SILENCE YOUR CELL PHONES" sign on the entrance to the restaurant.

But all in all, I had a lovely time, and I definitely look forward to going back again!

The Brewster Inn's Webpage for your perusal.

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