Monday, August 8, 2011

Stonewood-The Celebration Station

Ok, I'm fairly certain chef Mike Drury of Stonewood Grill & Tavern would groan and ban me from further frequenting his restaurants if he knew that I just called his fine dining but casual restaurant (does that even work? A causal fine dining establishment? eh, just go with it!) the "Celebration Station." A title I freely admit should more likely be associated with Chucky Cheese. But hang tight Mike and friends. Let me do some 'splaing.

It's my dad. See, not only is he crazy particular about what restaurants he will dine at, it was his birthday. The big number 57 in fact. So when the man chooses Stonewood (which he does every year, btw) we go. We also go for Mom's birthday, their anniversary, and pretty much any other "big occasion" I don't have control over.

But you know what? This little control freak is actually ok with the frequency in which my family, well, frequents this particular grill and tavern. I like the casual elegance of the high booths, smooth polished wood bar, and quiet jazz music pipped in seemingly through magic. (Or really well hidden speakers. Whatev.) What I like even more than the ambiance is the food. It's simple and done well. (Just like the ambiance. Hummm.)

So, if you have something to celebrate, let me give you a few ideas.

Happy Hour at the Bar:

2 for 1 dirty gin Martinis for Daddy and I (although he drinks his on the rocks...I like mine up) and Cosmos for Mum, plus an amazing round of Bleu Cheese Chips - house made potato chips drizzled with bleu cheese aioli, lightly baked and served with bleu cheese crumbles, then drizzled with a balsamic reduction for the table


We ordered a lovely Alamos Malbec.

Now, if you can break away from admiring how handsome my father is you might notice something interesting about the wine label. It's not Alamos, in fact it's not even a Malbec. (and super unfortunate, it wasn't close to the same price point of the wine we ordered. Yipes.)

This whoops was not only on the waitress' part, but on the patron's part for not actually inspecting the wine when it was presented. Learned my lesson on that one: read the label, regardless of the fact that you had two martinis at happy hour. (In case you were wondering, the manager was great about the whole situation since our server was still in training; he billed us for the wine we ordered and we enjoyed the Gott Cab, as it was already uncorked.)

In spite of the wine snafu, we had a lovely dinner.

My plate*:

Oak Grilled Pork Chops - Thick, center-cut boneless pork chops, marinated in a blend of citrus-infused olive oil, honey, soy and spices, and served with Granny Smith apple chutney with a side of creamed spinach, which is divine, and a baked potato.

The chutney really made this dish for me. So many flavors in every bite, and I may or may not have cleaned my plate. A girl never pigs out kisses and tells. 

Both Mom and Dad both got the Petite Filet.

Dad's plate, with the creamed spinach and seasonal vegetables.

Needless to say, the only dessert we had was to polish off the Joel Gott. (I mean, when in the land of polished wood, why not?

Thanks again Stonewood, for being our tried and true Celebration Station.

Love to all,
~the "control freak who loves pork chops with chutney" gal, Jess

*these out of focus photos are driving me insane. I still struggle to get good photos in dim lighting...I need to figure that out if I'm ever going to have a job doing restaurant reviews.


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