Monday, June 13, 2011

Wayne County Chocolate Trail Report 3

Our final stop on our trek along the Wayne County Chocolate Trail was for a five-course chocolate dinner at the Gennett Mansion.  To see the first part of this report on our day trip go HERE; to see the second part go HERE.

Official Photo from Gennett Mansion Website
The Gennett Mansion isn't the biggest house or the oldest in Richmond, Indiana, but our tour guide, Donna, and her husband, Bob, told us a lot about it, including how it went from private home to apartments to offices and finally now to the up and coming night spot for townies and visitors.  Once a month, on the first Friday of the month, they offer a five-course gourmet meal which features chocolate.  They have other gourmet dining at other times of the month but this one is what is part of the Wayne County Chocolate Trail.  It is $38 cash or check and if you make reservations keep them because they make each meal per reservations -- we had to charge two of our members money even though they left early but the Gennett Mansion did send the food home so they got their food if not the wonderful experience.


We were in one room at this lovely table and the service was fairly formal, delivered by the lady of the house, Donna.  Even though our dinner was at 6:30pm you can see how much sunlight was coming into the room still before we began.






When we first came into the mansion we could tell this had been a fine home in it's day and Geddes have done a wonderful job revitalizing it to return it to a lovely Colonial Revival house.  Here you can see a piano as well, a Starr Piano which is what the house's builder's Henry and Alice Gennett, made most of their money manufacturing. 


But I know you, Sisters and Brothers, you want me to move on to the dinner so I shall.  We started with this first course: Cacao Nib-Crusted Duck with Strawberry Avocado Salsa.  I'm not sure I've ever had duck but this was delicious.  I'm not a fan if avocado but our chef, whom you'll meet soon and who will hopefully do an email interview with us, made it wonderful.



That was true for every course but I have a confession: Your Chocolate Priestess is PICKY.  Yes, yes, you know I can be harsh with the chocolates but my pickyness with food is almost a lifelong condition.  The second course was Local Greens Salad with White Chocolate Citrus Vinaigrette, Berries & Slivered Almonds.  Again I am not fond of salad and I shared a good part of mine with the others at the table but what I did eat, I liked. I'm just very wary of any leafy or green veggie since I have a violent kale allergy.  Our chef was so kind that she did not put the almonds on the salad of my hubby who is very allergic to tree nuts.

From our Chocolate Fruit Acolyte's Camera
The third course was to cleanse our palates and it was this Cocoa Sorbet with Fresh Mint Sprig.  I went ahead and ate the entire fresh mint and it was good, very cool in my mouth, even more so than the sorbet itself.  I felt like I was eating my dessert before the main course and I must say that caused me no guilt what so ever.





The main course or entree was beef, specifically Ancho Coffee Rubbed Grass-fed Beef with Chimichurri, Goat Cheese Stuffed Corn Cake, Grilled Zucchini.  I'm not a fan of onions or zucchini and I still wasn't a fan here but the beef was perfectly cooked while the corn cake was a bit tough to cut but tasted great. I just flipped mine over and it cut a bit easier.   I'm not sure where the chocolate was here but I think in the coffee because as you know, I don't like coffee but I really didn't taste coffee very much and there was a cocoa flavor to the beef.

Also from Chocolate Fruit Acolyte's Camera
The actual dessert was this Chocolate Kahlua Flan with Vanilla Whipped Cream, Fresh Fruit & Chocolate Chip.  I don't think I've ever had flan or if I have it was many many years ago.  I have certainly never made one myself.  Call me limited in my food experiences, and I have said how much leading The Chocolate Cult has opened my mouth and tummy, but I don't recall having kiwi in the past.  To be blunt, it looks kind of scary to this girl from rural Iowa.  It was wonderful by itself, with the currents, with the flan or the cream.  Putting all the flavors together though was the true bliss here though I ate the chocolate chip on the top by itself.

I could show you lots of photos from our tour of the Gennett Mansion but this is a chocolate cult so I want to focus on food so this is our last photo.  This is a room just off of the one we ate in where they have music performances and pub style food on Thursdays.  The room was designed for musical performances and using it today only continues the appropriate use of this house for today's visitors, guests, and professionals.

Gennett Mansion's dinners and special events are certainly worth it based on this experience with chef Jennifer Ferrell seen in the photo to the right. We were very honored and lucky they let us come with so few people and a very off night for them with a big expensive opera fundraiser the next night.  In difficult economic times you have to spent your money wisely and for a lovely evening of chocolate the first Friday here is worth it.  Just make sure you can really go, that they enough reservations or you bring 16+ people with you.

4 comments:

Rene said...

The strawberry avocado salsa won my heart. I'm still thinking about it. In the main course, the red onions were sweet pickled and still had cloves among them. And the pomegranate seeds on the dessert made a nice, tart contrast to the very sweet flan.

It was all so brilliantly delicious!

TheChocolatePriestess said...

Isn't our Chocolate Fruit Acolyte awesome, folks! Thanks, Rene!

Cooking Rookie said...

I've just finished dinner, but I could eat that cacao crusted duck and chocolate flan any time day and night!

briarrose said...

What a spread. It all looks so good.