Dinner with friends is always a special treat for us. Whether it’s having a beer at a dive bar, gorging ourselves on Mediterranean food or an intimate dinner in, the evening always contains lots of love and laughter. Last night was another one of those evenings. Duane and Prudy took us to dinner at a restaurant called Pairings. We’d never been there, but it’s a favorite of theirs and they wanted to share the experience. Pairings is located just outside Springfield in a Frank Lloyd Wright-styled house. I didn’t care if we ate; I wanted to live there. We began the evening in the downstairs lounge where the bartender helped Steve celebrate by making him a special shot called a Sea Monkey. I have no idea what was in it, but it tasted like fruity Play-Doh. Not my style. Owner Rebecca Flynn knows Duane and Prudy so she took us on a personal tour of the restaurant and told us that it used to be her house. She even showed us the private upstairs bathroom that’s larger than our bedroom!
Dinner is designed so you can order flights of wine specially chosen to compliment your food. Steve was the only one brave enough to order the five-course meal with the complete flight. Somebody had to drive so I quite drinking before dinner. Besides, I wanted to be sober to enjoy the food. Duane and I chose the five-course meal without the wine and Prudy chose three courses. Everything was delicious! What’s nice about the courses is that they are very small so you end up with one medium-sized meal at the end. I didn’t feel overly full, but I felt very satisfied. Here’s what I had:
Baby beet and micro cress salad with asparagus, Easter egg radish, crater lake blue cheese in a watermelon, tomato and lemon basil vinaigrette.
Baby butter bibb lettuce salad with buttermilk and tarragon vinaigrette and house made croutons. (Note: these two salads together didn’t add up to one “restaurant sized” salad. They were small, but very tasty)
Cavillon melon sorbet (This was about a tablespoon of sorbet. It tasted like very sweet cantaloup.)
Sauteed Atlantic salmon with black lentils, brussels sprouts in a red wine and mousserone demi (this was a nice portion. I got about 4 oz of salmon and 1/4 cup of lentils)
Olive oil and rosemary cake with spiced pear sorbet (This was about the size of a 1/4 slice of pound cake with about a tablespoon of pear sorbet. I chose it because it sounded different and it was! Good, but a bit weird)
The cost of this particular meal without the wine is $40 per person. A bit pricy, but since it’s a celebration and the food is more exotic, I didn’t think it was out of line. Thank you Duane and Prudy for an incredible evening!