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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

a review: the kitchen cafe -- gluten free + dairy free

last night my sweet valentine took me to the kitchen cafe in boulder for to the most amazing meal. seriously, hands down - this was the best meal i've ever had. i desperately wanted to take pictures of the beautiful food, however i wanted to respect my date, and other diners - so the photos i've used in this blog entry were taken from the kitchen's website. if you arent familiar with the kitchen cafe - you're missing out. its boulders go-to sustainable, eco - friendly restaurant that buys organic, local foods whenever possible.

photo from http://www.thekitchencafe.com/
to be safe - once we were seated i alerted our very attentive waiter about my food allergies - to which he responded, 'you've come to the right place' and assured me that he would take care of me through the meal. the chef set a four course prix fixe menu for the night which included bubbles & canapes, a starter, second starter, main course, and dessert. the menu also had a few extra add on for those interested - a charcuterie board, a cheese board, and maine oysters.

bubbles & canapes & other deliciousness
to start off the meal our waiter brought out two glasses of il follo presecco - clean and sweet with notes of honey. along with that came canapes of duck, fresh herbs and cheese on toasts (which i didnt eat - but mark enjoyed), as well as fresh bread (for mark) and to my surprise gluten free dairy free bread (for me)! we both ordered cocktails to keep us on cloud 9 - i ordered an extra dirty chopin (potato vodka) martini - made just right.


first course
we figured since it was valentines it would be appropriate to order the bagaduce river oysters from maine in addition to our pending feast. they arrived served with lemon and a champagne shallot mignonette - a perfect accompaniment to the ultra fresh oysters. for my starter i ordered maine scallop ceviche with pomegranate seeds and fennel sprouts, which was bright and citrusy. mark ordered freshly made gnocchi with braised ox tail – i think it’s safe to assume it was good – the large serving that could have easily been a main course was gone within minutes of its arrival.  

second course
for my second course i ordered a gem salad with blood orange and tarragon - crisp romaine served with fresh herbs including tarragon and cilantro, blood orange segments and a light citrus vinaigrette. mark ordered beet soup - served with char grilled bread topped with local chevre.
photo from http://www.thekitchencafe.com/


third course
this choice was really tough. i was tossed up between ordering more fish or a vegetarian entree. i decided since i already had so much seafood that i'd go with the vegetarian option (which i almost never do) and i'm so, so, so glad that i did. my main course was the perfect combination of roasted artichokes, sweet/savory peperonata and fresh herbs served on top of white mountain farm colorado grown quinoa - with hints of coconut and curry. this dish was absolutely incredible - it was well thoughout and well executed. many compliments to the chef. mark was between the colorado ribeye and colorado rabbit - and went with the rabbit - wrapped in prosciutto served over fresh vegetables and spaetzle.

fourth course
both desserts listed on the prix fixe menu: chocolate nemesis - a chocolate torte served with chantilly cream & candied roses, and blood orange panna cotta were made with diary. our waiter stepped up to the plate and used his resources to be sure that i had a little something sweet at the end of my meal. out with marks chocolate nemesis came my 'massive' chocolate - a dark chocolate bar with candied orange and some sort of coarse salt.

photo from http://www.thekitchencafe.com/

no question - this was the best meal i've ever eaten. service - impeccable, food - delicious, company (my valentine) - amazing, as always. i fell madly in love with the kitchen cafe on valentines day.

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