Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Oktoberfest at Harvest

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Recently, we were invited to the Harvest restaurant at Pheasant Run Resort & Spa to experience their Oktoberfest beer menu, offered every Thursday. We were lucky enough to enjoy Executive Chef Tiffany's gourmet cuisine in a warm and inviting atmosphere where the menu includes the finest grade of aged beef, exceptional seafood, extraordinary game selections and seasonal dishes inspired by fresh ingredients available in local markets.

Explore the dinner menu with us through photos and tasting notes:

First Course
Diver Sea Scallop: Bacon Wrapped Diver Scallop with an Apricot Glaze

Stella Artois LagerFull flavored lager with a hoppy aroma and hint of fruit followed by a crisp, mild bitter lemon finish      

Notes: I have always been timid about scallops due to the texture but Lisa persuaded me to step outside my box and give them a try and I'm very glad I did. I should have figured that anything wrapped in bacon with an apricot glaze should not be questioned...the scallops were light, airy and a perfect lead in to the rest of the courses. 

Second Course
Pheasant Run Wedge Salad: Crisp Iceberg Lettuce with Applewood Smoked Bacon, Heirloom Tomatoes Marinated with Herb Vinaigrette and Buttermilk Bleu Cheese Dressing

ChiTown Pier Pale AleA fragrant bouquet of hops with a mild fruity flavor and a crisp clean finish that is the hall mark of pale ale’s 

Notes: Who knew a wedge salad could be so tasty? Often thought of as the "leftover lettuce," a wedge isn't typically as desirable as say, an organic spinach salad but this one was different. The bacon and tomatoes together were a savory + sweet combination but the bleu cheese dressing made the meal...absolutely loved the flavors here.

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Third Course
Wild Mushroom Crusted Filet Mignon: Grilled Black Angus Tenderloin of Beef with Spinach Risotto, Oven Roasted Asparagus and Fresh Herb Demi Glaze

Pheasant Run Ringneck Red Lager: A rich, deep amber color with soft hop and fruit flavors followed by a lingering clean finish. This beer is made by Leinenkugel specifically for Pheasant Run and is not available anywhere else

Notes: Everything worked here - the combination of the spinach risotto and asparagus worked so well with the filet and not to mention, was beautiful in presentation. The steak was cooked to perfection...we both prefer our meat cooked medium rare and Chef Tiffany did not miss a beat.

This beer was by far our favorite of the night. We both immediately "mmm'd" after trying it and discussed how we needed to make a stop at Binny's so we could bring it home to our husbands. Too bad it's exclusive to the restaurant, but I guess that just means we'll have to come back even sooner ;)

Fourth Course
Kilauea Chocolate Molten Lava Cake: Fresh House Made Dark Chocolate Cake Filled with Warm, Decadent Chocolate Magma Topped with Crème Anglaise

Guinness StoutAromas of roasted malt give way to caramel and cocoa flavors that make this the perfect partner for chocolate

Notes: If loving this cake is wrong, we don't want to be right. The cake was delicious on its own but add warm chocolate magma topping and dessert has officially won. The pairing with the Guinness was fantastic and totally unpredictable. We had both experienced Guinness in similar settings years ago (traveling overseas) but never tried it in combination with sweets so that was refreshing and a satisfying way to end a fantastic evening.

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The Oktoberfest Special runs every Thursday through October. Here's what you need to know to make a reservation:

Executive Chef Tiffany Tooker
Four-Course Beer Pairing Menu
$35 per person, excluding tax and gratuity
Dining Room Hours: 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Address: 4051 E. Main Street, St. Charles, IL
Reservations: (630) 584-6300