I am a terrible friend and have been remiss in not reporting on the splendiferous dinner to which Melissa (here she’s professional; here she’s casual) invited Sherry and I two Sundays ago.

Melissa has a delightful tradition wherein she invites friends to a fancypants dinner for her birthday (which was on the 22nd of last month). And this year the location of choice was Langdon Hall.

We arrived early-ish for dinner, and spent a few moments warming ourselves by the fire while they took our coats and whatnot. Mmm… fire… (Really, it’s not possible to look good AND be really warm on a frosty winter’s evening…)

The dining room is as lovely as the rest of the place, and the view from the surrounding windows is very peaceful (even if we were there during late winter, which is not known for its aesthetic value).

We joked a couple times during the course of the meal at how stereotypically Canadian everyone was being. Every time one of the staff came by the table, each of us thanked them, and they thanked each of us. (I remembered to keep my elbows off the table, too.) 🙂

The wine list was a vast tome, though with the sommelier’s assistance and Sherry’s thorough perusal, we ended up with a lovely Three Gardens by Langmeil Winery. Fortunately, all three of us are of a mind about our reds, and fruit is always welcome.

The amuse bouche was duck for Sherry and I, and a “soused” tomato for Melissa. The duck was interesting and quite tasty, though not what I expected and the texture put me in mind of my grandpa’s head cheese.

I started with the Sesame Tuna, which was as delicious as it was intriguing to look at. Sherry had the Tartar of King Prawns, which was equally delicious and had some fascinating disparate elements. Melissa had the Roasted Garden Beets, but I won’t let my lack of love for the beet make me judge her. 🙂

For dinner I had the Beef Tenderloin, and everything on the plate was incredible. (And you could have cut the beef by blowing on it.) I bet Sherry’s choice was going to be between the Bison Mignon and the Lamb. She went with the bison. I had a schnibble of that (as my Dad would say), and it was fabulous. Melissa had the vegetarian tasting menu, which had all manner of fascinating elements, and pulses done waaaaaay fancier than I’ve ever tried.

For dessert I had the Tortoni, and it was beyond wonderful. (Especially after not eating sugar for a month — long story.) Sherry had the Three Textures, which did some really fantastic things with apples (especially the sorbet) and a scotch. (We were amused when they offered to send the sommelier over to help her choose one.) Melissa had the Chocolate, Hot and Cold, so needless to say there was sharing among plates.

(Dinner menu)

All in all, a thoroughly wonderful dinner with the finest of company. It was also kinda funny how it worked out that every time one of the staff came by the table, we were talking about something that made us sound incredibly pretentious. Like when Melissa describing her ultimate alternative career. Heh.

Having someone else fetch my car was great, and made much more fun by the fact that he brought in a pair of Bernese Mountain Dogs with him when he came back. 🙂 Our lack of familiarity with the 401 in that area resulted in some… detouring on the way home. (Note to self: never attempt a shortcut if you don’t know EXACTLY where you’re going.) But hey, we got to see a truck stop near Drumbo and drive through Guelph. Ahem.

Sadly, though, our next birthday opportunity for fancypants dining isn’t til June. I’m sure we’ll find some excuse before then…

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