I'm just coming off one of my most important and fun meetings of the year and am finally playing catch up on my birthday week. I was floored by the outpouring of birthday wishes on Facebook and the surprise cards from dear friends in my mailbox. I feel blessed beyond measure! Monday night brought a fun surprise from my Charlie. He called me at work in the afternoon to tell me he was going to be home early, AND was taking me to the B&O Brasserie for my birthday. I was excited about a fun dinner, but honestly to have Eric home before eight o'clock has not happened for months. That was the best present ever. Elle Decor suggested the restaurant as a good spot to eat in their 2010 March issue. Our friend Amy Burke invited us to the opening for B&O over a year ago and E. hadn't been back since due to his schedule. I've been to countless business lunches and events there and love that it is so close to my office.
It was so great having a date night on a Monday. It was quiet and our server was wonderful. I asked a thousand questions and he was so knowledgeable about the menu. There is a new chef and the menu has changed just a bit. Chef Thomas Dunklin is from Portland and hails from another Kimpton property. The bread was outstanding with a soft sweet middle and crunchy crust. They ferment their own grapes for a tanic quality in the yeast. Who does that? It's called Annadama and is a traditional fishermans bread made with cornbread, molasses and flour. I found a ton of recipes for it and have to try it soon but don't have bread flour in the house. I wonder if that really makes a difference? I'm not a baker so would love an answer if anyone knows.
Eric indulged in the celebration and had a Woodford Reserve Manhattan. Oh my gracious it was delicious.
I had my signature Bombay Sapphire Dirty Martini. They also have the coolest water system for sparkling water. Can't remember what it was called but they make their own sparkling water and recycle the glass bottles. It reduces the carbon footprint of the restaurant.
I ventured out and tried the smoked frog legs and artichoke soup. Frog legs are quite the trendy little food item I think. Cityzen at Mandarin used to serve them all the time. They really do taste like chicken. E. wanted nothing to do with them but this dish was wonderful. Do not have a dirty martini with it though. A little too salty.
E. ordered the mixed grill. This little piggy comes to the table first with perfectly gray charcoal.
Then the grill is placed over the coal with an assortment of shrimp, sausage and filet.
Spinach and mashed potatoes were served as his sides. The chimichurri sauce for the beef looked amazing. It is traditionally South American and similar to pesto. Too bad our bestie living in Brazil doesn't eat meat. I'd love to have an authentic recipe.
I ordered the sugar cane skewered scallops. They were served with the best puree of pear and parsnips. I'm dying for the recipe. The kale was cooked like southern collard greens with bits of bacon. It was every bit as delicious as this photo proves. Cooked to perfection and the spice of the mustard sauce was a great balance to the sweetness of the scallops.
It was a wonderful birthday and this photo caught my wish in progress. I'm hopeful for a healthy and happy year. I love the lingering smoke off of the candle. The restaurant sent this chocolate lava cupcake as a nice finish to the meal. Thanks B&O!
Thank you too my darling Charlie for getting home early and for the wonderful birthday. I love you more than words.