We had a different sort of dining experience recently at Nectar, in Mt. Lookout. A piece was recently done on this restaurant in the eating-local-mag EDIBLE), and an acquaintance of ours talked them up.
We happened upon to visit Nectar during one of their periodic Dinner Club events. On these nights dinner is a single event with a set menu, designed around a certain theme, the menu is prepared with seasonal, locally farmed ingredients. We happened upon them for "Products of the Hive," a dinner event designed around the central theme of honey.
I don't know that I would have sought out goat cheese beignets in my life before this experience, but I now know that I should have. By god, I should have. I can't remember being more pleasantly surprised by some unassuming looking dish. I shamed myself by not allowing the waiter to take away the table's shared plate until I'd eaten no less than three. I blame the steroids (allergic reaction, long story). The salad was no great shakes for me, and the dessert wasn't my thing (D loved them both though), but truly a delight was the "local poisson, " which has got to be "poissin" misspelled because I was expecting, no, dreading a honeyed-fish and instead I got this awesome, moist and flavorful wee chicken.
Eh, french stuff. Who can be expected to spell correctly, am I right?
|they sent us off with a comb to enjoy at home|
They announced that their next theme event will be garlic. I love me some garlic, so I'm tempted to try the next Dinner Club event. It was a long evening, much longer than your normal dining experience would be, so you have to expect that that, that is, the eating, is your entire evening. And the price is steep, or seems so to me. Then again, we eat in a lot. And pricey is pretty much what one might expect from a touted "culinary event."
I can say I'd be interested in trying the normal fare. I'm not one to be impressed or put off by decor, but I can say that in matters of decor, as well as in matters of general enjoyableness of the food and experience, it was the opposite of the experience we had at Cumin. The decor at Cumin accosts the eye with its trendiness and the food made me yak in the parking lot of the nearby police station on our way home (*I was not cited for illegal dumping). The decor at Nectar was... goats and stuff. Yeah. But I kept my meal, thanks, which is the way I prefer it.
I enjoyed that the local farmer/apiarist spoke about his (newly learned) trade before the dinner. How the bees sieve off the pollen from their catch-pouches, how many flower-visits go into making pollen. Bees made the news in the big mysterious population die-offs a few years ago that were never thoroughly explained by science. The apiarist told us that there have been several historical die-offs of bees in the past, not so many as to be cyclical, not so few as to be entirely shocking. Bees are pretty special. They got some press with that Bee movie a few years ago, but don't get their due often enough.
I learned from that movie that bees are so un-aerodynamic that science can't fully explain how they are able to fly in the first place. Not a great film, but I learned something.
Personally, I think its sugar-power. After dinner I was humming on honey-energy myself. I was so buzzed I half-expected to fly home.