The only words I can use to describe my Poste Roast experience is "ridiculously amazing." It wasn't until after I went to a Food Bloggers Happy Hour and talked to Macheesmo and Savory Reviews that I realized that I haven't written this post. I had every intention of doing it but it just never happened. A lot has been going on so I'm not going to beat myself up too much about it.
My cousin Stephanie (the family "social director") sent out an email with this info from Poste:
"Family Style -- With summer and outdoor dining on everyone's mind, Poste Moderne Brasserie and Chef Robert Weland have introduced a new farm-to-table dinner concept, called 'Poste Roasts.' Available every night but Thursday at the chef's table in the Poste Garden, the new dinner will feature spit-roasted meat sourced from local farmers and summer-inspired sides, all served family-style. Meat options, selected personally by Weland and sourced from a local farmer, include goat, pig, duck, brisket, lamb and squab. All cuts are spit-roasted over hickory wood on the newly installed courtyard grill, and served with fresh seasonal sides featuring ingredients from the restaurant's organic vegetable and herb garden. 'Poste Roasts' are served at the new outdoor chef's table, handcrafted with local Virginia stone and sustainable teak wood. Guests must book one week in advance, and upon reserving select one animal of choice to be roasted. Chef-selected pairings of Virginia wines are also available with roasts. The dinner is available for a minimum of six people and maximum of 12, and is priced at $27 per person, excluding beverages, dessert, tax and gratuity. Reservations must be made seven days in advance to allow for the freshest and most sustainable ingredients to be sourced from local farmers. Only one animal can be roasted for each dinner."
$27 per person! How can this be? Here is how...it isn't. They get you on the wine and the appetizers. You are sitting out in a garden with this magnificent marble table that has the kind of height that makes you feel like royalty. A part of you starts saying things like "yes I want the best wine to accompany this meal." I blame it on the magnificent marble table. It was a good investment for the restaurant.
To get you in a carefree and relaxed mood, the first thing they do is take you on a tour of the garden. Its small but very cute. Some of the mints are used in the cocktails at the bar and smell amazing. Its charming to think they grow all their vegetables but that would be impossible. I did see some cooks come out to cut some chives and head back to the kitchen. I spent the evening contemplating with my cousin which herbs we were going to pull out of the ground and stuff into our purses. It was very tempting since our table was set outside with some herbs within arm length of us.
Like I said, they will get you on the appetizers and alcohol. The waiter suggested a summer tomato salad which sounded wonderful on a hot summer night. And it was. There was a tomato sorbet on top of a sweet onion relish, slices of heirloom tomatoes and ricotta cheese. So refreshing and the tomatoes were bursting with summer flavor.
Drum roll please...
They present the suckling pig to you whole first and then bring it back to the kitchen to cut it up. In the mean time, you sit and sip some more of that expensive wine.
The suckling pig was served with three sides: grilled peaches, sauerkraut, and macaroni and cheese. I could have done without the sauerkraut. The grilled peaches were a perfect combo with the salty pork meat. The peaches were grilled until only slightly softened. The flesh still had a good firmness to it that made you feel like you were biting into a fresh peach. The macaroni and cheese was...AMAZING. They must have used bacon fat in the roux because it just had that wonderful salty, bacon, smokey taste to it. So good!
And here is the pig skull split open so that we could eat the brains.
It tastes a little like liver pate but a little more squishy and fatty. I prefer liver.
And here is the money shot. Here is the crispy, salty, fatty pig skin. I could have eaten this ALL night. Crunchy, tasty, dipped in hot sauce...my mouth is watering now thinking about how good this pig skin was.
The meal was great. Sitting out in the garden watching the night fall and just having a relaxed conversation with your family and friends is just a lovely way to spend an evening. The waitor gave us a tip that Poste is working on a Fall menu to continue Poste Roasts and will start taking reservations soon. We could do it thriftydccook style and drink water and not order appetizers or desserts(or not). I would like to try a whole lamb next. You want in?