Saturday, March 27, 2010

Saturday Celebration

I knew I'd be going out tonight, so purposely stayed on the light end of the food options during the day.


I woke up with a massive sweet tooth. After talking myself out of donuts, waffles and pancakes, I went for the fruit. I sliced a banana, chopped a pear and tossed in some blackberries for good measure. Then, I added some vanilla yogurt. Perfect! It was a big bowl, too, so very satisfying for not too big an impact, calorie-wise.

Afternoon snack:

I still needed a little something to hold me over (and not let my blood sugar shoot up) before dinner, so had some grapes and sundried tomato hummus with crackers.


I went out to dinner to celebrate a friend's birthday. We went to Park Avenue Spring. It's a seasonal restaurant that undergoes a complete transformation each quarter. Decor and menu are both changed for the appropriate time of year. I'd only experienced Autumn previously, but Spring was no disappointment. For some reason, a few of the pictures came out completely awful, but I've already warned you, I'm no pro when it comes to photography. It's a point-and-shoot, after all.

The bread arrived first, as you'd expect. Of course, I was so excited about their having bread I can eat (more than one kind, too!) that I completely forgot to take a picture until it was gone. I started with the corn bread with sweet red peppers and jack cheese then moved to the quinoa flat bread. The corn bread was soft and melt-in-your-mouth good. It didn't even need a drop of butter. The flat bread was crisp, crunchy and salty, more like a cracker. The empty brown bowl by the peas (below) is where the bread had been.

They brought bowls of fresh, green peas. I'm not a huge fan of peas unless a) extremely fresh (this was the case here) or b) split peas. These were tasty! Just some salt and a bit of lemon.

The first actual course, I began with the beet salad. Ordinarily, it also has a pistachio pesto, but it was left out (highly allergic to tree nuts). It was very simple: three types of beets (note the 3 colors) with crumbled bleu cheese and a drizzle of honey infused with black truffle. I started to say "no thanks, I shouldn't eat hon...", oh, with black truffle? Bring it on. I can live with a brief sugar spike. If you've never experienced it, it's an excellent flavor combination (I'd only had it previously at Otto).

For my entree, I chose the roasted branzino (sea bass) with ginger lemon spinach. The fish was beautifully cooked and had a nice, mild flavor. The spinach, however, was the star of the show, in my opinion. The lemon really brought out everything wonderful in the spinach. For the table, we also had crispy artichokes (yum!), latkes (only my favorite thing from a potato) with lavender yogurt and rhubarb, and asparagus with lemon foam. Each was very well done.

Other items of note (we shared tastings around the table) were the Thai minestrone (so fresh!), the goat cheese and the egg ravioli (if only I could eat white flour more I'd have ordered this myself).

For dessert, I let the words "fruit plate" come out of my mouth when I was very tempted to say "the chocolate cube, please". I also ordered decaf coffee (a splash of cream and splenda). The spring fruits were all beautiful. I couldn't even finish it. I did taste small bites of others' desserts, however, including the chocolate cube (filled with cinnamon and caramel mousse) and the banana and olive oil sorbet. The progression of goat cheese was also quite tempting. The menus are here, if you really want to drool on your keyboard.


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