Sunday, December 20, 2009

Dark Days - Meal 5

My local meal this week almost got ruined by a blizzard, but we prevailed and made it to our planned meal at the White Dog Cafe in Philadelphia, PA.  We had planned our little weekend trip to Philly well in advance and were not going to let the forecast of a little snow stop us from going.  However, we did not expect the near 2 feet that came down!

The only change in the end was the fact that we had to order off the bar & grill menu rather than the full dinner menu - which was great, since some other stores and restaurants outright closed, and the bar & grill menu was still quite extensive.

Here's why this meal counts for the Dark Days Challenge:
On their website: "The White Dog Cafe's support of sustainable agriculture is driven by both taste and food politics. Seasonal, local, and organically grown ingredients taste better. Humane and sustainable agriculture produces safe, wholesome food in a manner that is ecologically sound, economically viable, equitable, humane, and provides a healthy and safe environment for the present and future generations."

Dave and I tried to choose meals that were local enough to fall within the 150 mile range.  Here's an ultra grainy photo of me enjoying a pint of Troeg's Rugged Trail Ale, from Harrisburgh, PA (94 miles from Philly):

We then split the Artisan Cheese Plate:

Birchrun Hills Farm Blue served with pomegranate seeds, Shellbark Farms Chevre with Slow Roasted Pecans and Pennsylvania Noble Cave Aged Cheddar with a spicy apricot sauce.  So delicious.  The Chevre was my favorite.

Then for dinner, I ordered the Wild Mushroom Soup with Grilled Amish Chicken and Truffle Chive Creme Fraiche, which Dave informed me was really an appetizer and I wouldn't get enough to eat.  I reasoned that with the beer and cheese and the thought that dessert would likely follow, I would be just fine, thank you!  The chicken in the soup was indeed more of a garnish, but the soup was still very rich and creamy.

Dave got the Amish Grassfed Veal Meatloaf served over grilled escarole with homemade marinara sauce.  I took a bite and informed Dave that my meatballs from DD meal one were way better.  I think he felt I was a little harsh in my judgment, but his meatloaf was a bit dry - and my meatballs were certainly not!

Here's where we went off the local boat: dessert.  Chocolate and Oranges - totally not local.  But I have a thing for chocolate cakes.  Maybe once I make one of these molten suckers at home, the novelty of gooey chocolate cake will wear off, but for now - I love me some chocolate cake.  And even when most of the other desserts appeared to be sourced locally, I ordered me some chocolate cake.  Warm Molten Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Sorbet, Cocoa Nib Tuile, Candied Orange and Orange Campari Syrup to be exact.  It was beautiful, and heavenly to eat.  See how the dark chocolate under the cake was painted on with a brush?  I scraped it all off with my fork it was so delish.

So if you find yourself in Philly, even in the middle of the Blizzard of 2009 - stop by the White Dog Cafe and get yourself some SOLE food!

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