White Dog Cafe....

image courtesy of the website
When hunger strikes, we have to act fast, especially when I am involved, or there will be a problem. We all worked up an appetite after watching the crew sprints, and enjoying the intermittent sun and Philadelphia traffic. Most every time we visit my sister at UPenn, we encounter the meal dilemma, today was no different.  We walked down the street, Sansom Street, where we have had a few meals at the various restaurants before. This time we stopped at White Dog Cafe, with reluctance and hesitation, due to our lack luster apparel.  No dress code granted us access to the best meal I have had out in a while.
the room we sat in -image courtesy of the website
The Hostess led us through a maze of dinning rooms, each with a different feel. Finally we reached our lavish table ( I say lavish because the room we sat in a room that was decorated with rich reds and warm golden yellows with dim individual unique light fixtures and the booth was a handsome green…. I really could go on).

image courtesy of the website
On top of the professionalism and the friendly disposition of the staff, the food was amazing. The menu, though not extensive, had a certain depth of options variety and an appeal to each of the senses. It incorporated very generic items and ingredients with the unexpected, to create dishes to tickle the tastebuds.

My Father had steelhead trout, accompanied by grilled fennel and an asparagus and lump crab meat salad. He said later on " Being an old baltomoron,  I am not sure about that lump crab, though.” I was not able to get a picture of his meal, but it was well presented, the pink steelhead tuna (reminiscent of salmon, as the waitress pointed out) rested atop the fennel, while the salad combination was placed on the side. All in all my dad concluded;  “Steelhead trout, a new experience, a lot like salmon.  It was quite tasty.”
Mommie's pasta special
My Mother chose one of the specials that night. The waitress had to explain it twice as it had so many ingredients. She described it as a parpadelle pasta with roasted tomatoes, wild mushrooms, Amish pulled chicken, grilled zucchini and squash, topped with a curry cream sauce. Well it is a mouthful, though she said my sister and I had it perfect in the end. Mommie initially said when I asked if she had anything to say about the dinner, "just that it was really good." But she really did have more to say, and continued, "The description of the dish didn't do it justice. it really didn't taste like "curry" but was really mellow and the oven dried tomatoes weren't like the "sun dried" kind you get in a jar, they were sweeter. The mushrooms were meaty and earthy. The chicken was really nice, the Amish chickens must have lived a good life... yes, they were tasty."
Alix's Porkchop special

Alix, my sister also had one of the specials for the evening. Her's was a pork chop marinated and cooked in a glaze combination of soy sauce and orange. The meat was served on top of a bed of kale cooked with bacon. The vegetable side had pieces of bacon strewed in it, evidence of their time cooked together. My dad, looking at Alix's plate asked what the sauce was. She and I both tasted it with eyes closed, and she came to the conclusion that it was "some kind of reduction." Alix has real skill with food, as she is an excellent cook and baker. Both she and my mother (and maybe me) have acute taste buds, and the rare ability to articulate what it is they taste. When I asked her what she thought she said "it was tasty." However, she was not completely satisfied, "The pork was a little too sweet maybe... and over cooked on one side ( but not too bad )."

Spicy Lamb Bolognese
I chose to save the best for last (well in my very biased opinion). I ordered one of the pasta dishes on the regular menu. This was the Spicy Lamb Bolognese. The menu describes it as "Meadow Run Farms Lamb, Severino Rigatoni, Whipped Basil Ricotta, Organic Baby Spinach" while my sister described it as "BANG." That happens to be the word I would use as well. It was amazing.... After my tragic meal at Court Street in Hoboken, I was afraid to eat out again. But this is how food in restaurants should be. It was very meaty, which I definitely can appreciate (meat is very important to me). It also had a lovely kick to it, as it is described as spicy. The rigatoni were cooked to a perfect al dente, and littered with wilted spinach, and topped with flaked Parmesan cheese. The whipped ricotta with the basil, was just the metaphorical icing on the cake. Its thick and creamy texture added an element of silky richness to the mosaic of my pasta dish. Chewing this concoction created fireworks in my mouth, and will forever be imprinted in the memory of my tastebuds. The dish was a lavish combination of hot (spice) and cold (basil ricotta), crunch (rigatoni) and smooth (wilted spinach).

The pictures I snapped right before my famished family members began to eat do not do the food justice, at all. And I am not sure any picture could, as each dish was accompanied by tastes, aromas, textures and feelings no image could convey....

Such a great meal!

No comments:

Post a Comment

leave me some love