The Grey Plume’s 2013 Rainier Cherry Dinner


The Grey Plume Outside ViewThe Grey Plume was selected for the nationwide Tree-To-Table program by Northwest Cherries for the third year! TGP is one of 50 restaurants (one per state) that was provided the ultra-sweet Rainier Cherries to feature on their menu.

Last year, FoodMeOmaha and boyfriend Brian had a memorable Rainier cherry dinner at TGP (See last year’s post). Thus, on Saturday, July 13th, 2013, we came back for another cherry journey.

The Grey Plume had 3-courses centered on the Rainier cherry for $40 and wine pairings for an additional $20. Yes, please! Brian opted for no wine since he is not a big wine drinker. I happily dined and wined.

IMG_3328The Grey Plume's Rainier Cherry Butter

We started out with complimentary bread with Rainier Cherry butter. The smooth, fresh, light, Rainier Cherry butter was an instant hit! The bread’s only purpose was for the beautiful butter, by far, superior over store-bought butter.

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Our waiter easily enticed me with the special Rainier Cherry lemonade cocktail. I knew I already had three happy drinks in the line up, but I couldn’t resist. It was a cold, refreshing, semi-sweet and slightly tart beverage to enjoy.

IMG_3335The Grey Plume's Amuse Bouche

An amuse bouche to amuse the taste buds. This was an interesting mix of concentrated chocolate, sweet and tart cherry, light airy whipped texture, crunch, salt, and slight bitterness all in one bite. The amuse bouche was intriguing but didn’t make sense on my palette.

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Drink 1: Sattler St. Laurent Reserve, Burgenland, Austria, 2010. The sommelier had sophisticated descriptions of each wine. I wish I had the distinguished palette to describe the wines! Alas, I liked this red. This is a well-rounded, medium-body red that warmed my insides and paired well with the mushrooms.

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Course 1: Nebraska Blue Oyster Mushrooms & Cherry Four Ways (smoke, gastrique, leather/dehydrated, tartare). The savory, subtle woody mushrooms were a joy. The dehydrated and tartare cherry applications entertained my taste buds but did not wow. The smoked cherry wowed us with the amazing burst of smokey, cherry goodness.

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Drink 2: Prieler Blaufrankish Johanneshohe, Burgenland, Austria, 2010. Another well-rounded, medium-bodied red (slightly heavier) that complemented the beef. The happy spirits continues!

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Course 2: Majinola Ranch Wagyu Beef with fennel, cherry marmalade, braised cherry, basil, and beef tongue. Glorious Wagyu beef and tongue!!! The tender tongue melted in the mouth and rocked our taste buds. Brian exclaimed, “It’s like French kissing a cow in the best possible way!”

Oh, yeah… We were feeling fireworks with the cow!

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We were enthralled with each bite of the Wagyu beef dipped in the creamy basil sauce.

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Drink 3: Kopke Ruby Port and Course 3: Rainer Cherry and Chocolate Spatzle (cherry many ways and white chocolate)

The cherry journey was finished with a port and my first spatzle dessert. Spatzle is a German egg noodle or dumpling pasta. I enjoyed trying something new but I had a mental barrier with the chocolate pasta as dessert. The thick gnocchi-like texture overpowered my palette and the chocolate was out of place. We both only had a few bites. Fun to try, but not for me.

This year, the Rainier cherry dinner had some rockstar hits and some intriguing misses. The pinnacle, glorious highlight was “French kissing a cow in the best possible way”!

2013 Tree-To-Table Rainier Cherry Dinner

  • Description: Three course dinner featuring the Rainier cherry.
  • Price: $40.00, additional $20.00 for three wine pairings
  • FoodMe YUM Rating: 7.75 out of 10
  • FoodMe Value Rating: 7.75 out of 10

Note: The overall rating is an average of individual components throughout the Rainier cherry dinner. There was some rockstar hits and some intriguing misses. For example, the FoodME YUM rating for the unique spatzle was a 4.0; whereas, the glorious Wagyu beef and tongue was a 9.75. 

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