Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Dinner at Castle Hill Inn - A 40th Anniversary Celebration

On Friday, I mentioned on Facebook (Hey, are you following me on Facebook?) that this past weekend was going to be a special one for Husband J's side of the family. This weekend we celebrated my mother and father-in-law's 40th wedding anniversary at Castle Hill Inn in Newport, Rhode Island. I have to say that 40 years is a rare and beautiful thing in 2012. Congratulations to them!

I've actually written a little about a previous experience at Castle Hill Inn. This hotel and restaurant are perched on a great spot in Newport. Many people don't even bother to stay or eat here. They just come for the views of the water and cocktails.

The Castle Hill Inn Lawn 

Boats pass right by Castle Hill Inn's gorgeous lawn. It's a nice place for boat watching. 

By the way, I think it's time for my once per year "Please allow me to show you that I actually have some sense of style" picture.

Husband J cleans up well, too. Yes, I am taller than him in wedge heels.

While it was fun being waterside, we also came to get our grub on; and we sure did. The Castle Hill Inn has three types of menus: a three course, five course or eight course tasting with the possibility of wine pairings for each course. We kept it simple with the three course. 

By the way, I have to shout out to my family for always asking, "Hey, Terri. Did you get your picture?" before eating. They are too sweet. Plus, my sister-in-law J ( Sis-L J), I think gave some people the side eye when they remarked about me taking pics of food. It's good when the family helps out the cause. :)

We received an amuse bouche to start. 

Can I say that I didn't get the entire description that the waiter gave, so just trust me. I wasn't sure how I felt about this amuse bouche. It's actually a watermelon gelee, but it was a little rubbery. You don't really get the full watermelon flavor. I did like the parmesan.

We each ordered very different appetizers.

Pan-Seared Foie Gras 
 Pinto Noir cake, green grapes, foie gras ice cream, vincotto

Someone ((ahem!) got foie gras, but it was primarily because of the ice cream, which was really did taste like sweet foie gras. I would never think of cake and foie gras going together either, but it was really nice for all of the different textures and tastes in this dish (sweet, tart, and savory). Do you see the pop rocks underneath the ice cream? That was a super cool surprise. Many times I just let them pop on my tongue.

Confit of Wild Boar
 applewood smoked, yakitori glaze, candied citrus fruit, shaved radish

The small taste I got of this was awesome. What made it really special was the play between the smokiness and the sweetness of the glaze. Plus, the boar was really just buttery tender. 

Cheese Plate
with fruit jam, Marcona almonds, honey, and grilled bread

I can't believe this was supposed to be for one person. We all chipped in to help out Sis-L J.  

Three of us ended up with the same main course. We were in Newport where the fish is fresh. 

Pan seared Native Fluke
with a bouillabaisse, lobster "sausage", confit potato, and braised leeks 

I had to try the lobster sausage. It had a sweet finish. While not a traditional bouillabaisee, it was still nice to have the soup-like broth that was comforting for a cool, early evening on the water. 

Herb Roasted Elysian Fields Lamb
with Merguez sausage, falafel, spring bean ragout, Lucques olives

Duck Rohan 
roasted with gooseberries, foie gras and quinoa

I snagged a small piece of Husband J's duck, and it was cooked beautifully.

Since we were celebrating, we had to have dessert. 

Tres Leches Cake 
caramel corn, toasted marshmallows, popcorn ice cream

What you're not seeing are the pop rocks (again!). They were underneath the smaller pieces of cake, which had been drenched with thick dulce del leche-like cream. I even thought the little pieces of parsley actually added to the dish giving it an earthy edge. 

Belgian Chocolate Terrine
Cocoa nib coulis, caramelized white chocolate creme, feuilletine

Creme Brulee
Vanilla & Meyer lemon custard on top with poppyseed cake on the bottom, blueberry coulis

Not a bad way to celebrate....

I asked my mother-in-law the secret to staying happily married for a long time. In her opinion, she told me that she thought there were two things that have helped her and my father-in-law all these years:

1. Have a sense of humor - Be able to laugh with one another and at one another. I definitely have no problems laughing at Husband J. :)

2. Grow together, not apart - Over the course of time, we all change. Taking into account each other's best interests through the years and staying connected is important.

Great advice, no? 

Happy Anniversary to them!

Castle Hill Inn
590 Ocean Avenue
Newport, Rhode Island 


BigAppleNosh said...

Looks like a fantastic meal! Happy Anniverary to your in-laws!

Tanya said...

Food porn indeed! It looks like y'all left with happy and satisfied tummies.

And those tips are important. Thanks for sharing and happy anniversary to your in-laws!

Monica Williams said...

That food looks amazing--and at a stunning site. Happy anniversary to the in-laws!


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