Tuesday, July 22, 2014

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Pine Creek Nursery - Tastes from the Garden

It was Michelle Newell that introduced me to Pine Creek Nursery via a Facebook post. I practically drive by it every day but never really noticed it before. I decided to visit one day after work a few months ago and picked up a few flowers for a container. While there, I signed up for their mailing list and I got my first newsletter a few weeks ago. They have lots of events from concerts to dinners.  Mark took me to their "Tastes from the Garden" four course meal (technically it was five courses) for a late birthday present. The dinner was outside, straight through the store on a lovely stamped concrete patio. They have a hardscaped stage surrounded by flowers and trees where they must have the bands play. There were several tables set up with place settings topped with a bouquet of rosemary and lavender. We didn't notice until we left that there were name tags on the tables so we didn't actually sit where we were supposed to but apparently the table we sat at was not reserved because it didn't have one on it.
Place Setting Pine Creek Nursery Outdoor Stage

Each table was served a plate of homemade artisan bread with a bowl of compound butter which didn't count as one of the courses. It wasn't gluten free bread so I didn't eat much of it but I did have a little taste just to try it and it was good. Soon after the bread was served, someone from Gregarious Cellars came by with a bottle of white wine. It's not a winery I've ever heard of and probably very few people have. As far as I know the only place you can get it is at the nursery. They have a tasting room there that's open Sat/Sun 12-5. Mark and I are not fans of white wines but it was the first wine that was brought around. You get one glass with dinner and we wanted to save it for a red so we didn't get a full glass of the white but we did get a taste and we were pleasantly surprised. It was probably the best white wine we've had. It was a 2011 Roussanne wine which is a French grape that I'd never heard of. It was so good that Mark bought a bottle on the way out. Even though we really enjoyed the tasting of white we both decided to try the Syrah which is my favorite red wine and it didn't disappoint; it had a strong pepper finish which is just the way I like it. We also got a glass of the red blend which was also good but we both liked the Syrah better.
Fresh Artisan Bread Gregarious Cellars Roussanne

Chef Aaron Brown presented each dish and answered questions about each one. After everyone was served he would also go around to each table answering more questions and asking how everything was.
Chef Aaron Brown

I enjoyed everything and most of the dishes were presented well with the exception of the main course. It wasn't very consistently plated and if it were me I would have presented the chicken on top of the bed of rice. Mark's was plated with the chicken and rice on opposite ends of the plate with about 2 inches separating them. Most of the dishes were made from scratch (except for the yogurt) and most of the ingredients were local (except for the chicken) with most of the vegetables coming from Willie Greens Organic Farm in Monroe.
Grilled Vegetables with Beef Chorizo Green Salad with Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette Ceviche Chicken and Rice with Dill Cream Sauce Berries and Vanilla Yogurt

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