The Late Summer/Early Fall Gastronaut’s Menu at the Inn at Little Washington

We went with some friends who are being transferred to Singapore to the Inn at Little Washington a couple of weeks ago.  We opted to select the Gastronaut’s Menu, the tasting menu being offered.

This time of year is a tough time for restaurants using local ingredients, as summer is drawing to an end but the fall produce isn’t quite fully harvested yet.  Not surprisingly, the Inn managed to combine the best of both and create yet another stunning meal.

We started off with truffle popcorn and Parmesan tuiles.  Honestly, I could eat vats of truffle popcorn and call it one of the finest meals I’ve ever had.  It’s very addicting.

The first official course was eggs in an egg on an egg.  It consisted of Osetra caviar on top of scrambled eggs in a ¾ eggshell.  Simply delightful.

egg on an egg in an egg

The next course was poached Maine lobster with citrus jelly.  The citrus jelly was just acidic enough to counteract the richness of the lobster but not so sour as to detract from the shellfish.  Yum!

poached Maine lobster in citrus sauce

Next up was chicken fried frog legs.  I actually would really like frog legs, if I could get over the fact that they were frog legs.  The meat is rich and flavorful (tastes like (dark meat) chicken!), but we’re still talking an amphibian.  They were delicious if you could get yourself mentally past what you were eating.

chicken fried frog legs

One of the best dishes of the menu was next—the Asian infused black cod.  The cod had been marinated in miso, and it was perfectly cooked—by which I mean that it was cooked all the way through but so delicately that the fish flaked off with a fork.  It was amazing!

Asian infused black cod

Pappardelle pasta with mushrooms and Virginia ham was next.  The mushrooms and the ham gave the dish a “meaty” texture, even though there was not an overwhelming amount of meat.  It was a perfect introduction to the beginning of fall.

papardelle pasta with Virginia ham & mushrooms

The final main course was duck served with fig au jus.  I love duck, so this dish ranked among my favorites that night.  But even Jim, who is not nearly as fond of duck as I am, thought this dish stood out.  The duck was slightly smoky and the fig sauce counterbalanced the heartiness of the duck nicely while not being cloyingly sweet.  It was an outstanding dish.

duck with fig sauce

The palate cleanser was plum sorbet served with a slice of plum on top.  The sorbet made it seem like summer while the plum flavor is definitely a late summer/early fall taste.

plum sorbet

Dessert was blueberry cobbler and lemon pudding cake served alongside a cherry sorbet.  The blueberry cobbler was just the perfect balance of sweet and tart while the lemon pudding cake was divine with its zesty citrus taste combined with the delicate but rich cake.

blueberry cobbler & lemon pudding cake

Another fabulous meal by the Inn!

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