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Refectory Dinner: French Country Meets Ohio Countryside

On June 5, The Refectory was good enough to host our third major dinner, an event we called “French Country Meets Ohio Countryside.” The idea was to have a traditional Refectory-style French country dinner in the open air on their patio, but using, as much as possible, all Ohio ingredients, right down to the wines (a prospect that made some oenophiles flinch — needlessly, as it turns out!)

The menu for the dinner was as follows:

French Country Meets Ohio Countryside The Refectory, June 5, 2008

English cucumber with dill cream on toast Puff pastry with Montcharet cheese and tomato 2007 Kinkead Ridge White Revelation

Chilled Ohio emu egg omelette with smoked salmon, chives, mushrooms, and tomatoes Ravenhurst La Terre Riche Grand Cuvee

White asparagus feuilleté with morel sauce Ravenhurst La Terre Riche Brut Rosé

Flat iron steak with green peppercorn sauce 2004 Busch-Harris R4 Cabernet Sauvignon

A presentation of Ohio and Michigan cheeses 2005 Kinkead Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon

Ohio strawberry duet 2004 Ravenhurst Deux, Les Corbeaux

I didn’t really fulfill my obligations as photographer as much as I should have — I strongly suggest a visit to the more comprehensive review at Columbus Foodie for a very detailed writeup. (I don’t know what I’ll do if Becke can’t make it to one of these dinners — I’ll really be up a creek!) In any event, I did manage to get a few photographs that will give a sense of what the evening was like.

Here we are on the Refectory’s patio, being welcomed by the owner, Kamal Boulos. Kamal is one of the most gracious people we’ve gotten to know in Columbus, and he’s been immensely supportive of Slow Food ever since he discovered that Colleen was getting a convivium started.

The white asparagus feuilleté with morels. It was every bit as good as it looks.

Up close and personal with the flat iron steak. Background: potatoes gratin, mushrooms with yellow pepper sauce. Barely pictured: garlic-creamed spinach. Awesome.

Best in show: The 2004 Busch-Harris R4 Cabernet. Don’t let anybody tell you that Ohio can’t produce a top-notch Cab. (If it’s any indication of our esteem for this wine, this photograph was not taken at the Refectory, but rather in our backyard, the next day… and this isn’t the only bottle we brought home!)

All in all, it was a perfect Slow Food evening — wonderful food, great wines, excellent company, and a happy, convivial atmosphere. We look forward to many more!

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