... or the lack thereof, I should say!
After ordering two appetizers (for dinner), I got myself this beautiful Italian Lemon Drop, a just-right tart cocktail that ended up going so very well with my first appetizer that I ordered up another one to enjoy with the second appetizer.
My first appetizer appears below. I'm sorry to say that these are not the mushrooms that Lamont picked last week, but they are from somewhere in Oregon. The appetizer's description: Chevre crouton with Oregon mushrooms. Each bite satisfied my taste buds, from the crispy-on-the-outside, chewy-on-the-inside crouton to the smooth and creamy chevre to the delicately sauteed mushrooms. I would have licked the plate if it were an acceptable dining detail.
Here's the second appetizer, which also had me thinking about licking my plate. It's description: duck confit with white beans. Once again, each bite spoke to my soul, from the crispy skin to the tender, moist meat to the perfectly prepared beans--can you call beans al dente? They certainly felt just right to my teeth.
Well, I'll be. I just Googled "al dente to the tooth" and found this part of a Wikipedia entry: "'Al dente" also describes vegetables that are cooked to the 'tender crisp' phase - still offering resistance to the bite, but cooked through." I had no idea, but in searching my mind for the best description of the beans, I immediately thought of that term.
And now, for the final course of the evening, here's my slice of cheesecake with cherries on top and the lightest crust imaginable on the bottom. Talk about al dente. My goodness, this treasure satisfied my desire for substantial, flavorful forkfuls of pure bliss, from my teeth across my tastebuds and on into my vivid memory.
The only way it could have been better is if y'all had been there with me. Oh, and I have to report that while I did lick my fork very thoroughly after each bite of each dish, I followed acceptable dining decorum and refrained from licking each plate. After all, my older son was in the kitchen and my younger one had joined me at the bar. Plus, my Mama raised me right. I didn't want to embarrass anyone, now did I?
By the way, if you have an interest in duck hunting, you just might want to check out the Hoy7 Hunting Team blog. There's a video there which features Dave, the cheesecake man at 3 Doors Down Cafe (also owner/chef), and his tee-totally unreal hunting results. I predict you shall be laughing and clicking play more than once.