Friday, August 27, 2021

The Fearrington House Restaurant

I was absolutely thrilled to celebrate my 34th birthday and check off another bucket list item last weekend, by dining at the Fearrington House Restaurant in Pittsboro. It was unbelievably splurge-worthy, and unlike some other high-end restaurants I’ve been to, it’s worth every penny. My fiancé and I were stuffed to the gills with some delicious morsels, and agreed that it was one of the best dining experiences we’ve ever had. It's one we'll treasure for a long time. So if you happen to be in the market for a celebration, The Fearrington House Restaurant is your spot.

Love a personalized menu!

Our amuse bouche was a 3-parter. Instantly, I was intrigued: 1) Pernod-Chanterelle cream filled up the inside of a puffy Gougergie, which oddly enough reminded us of the flavors in a Ginger Snap. Unfortunately, the licorice flavor in the Pernod was just too overwhelming for me. 2) Tomato Gelée with Basil Mousse, a fresh Tomato, and Rosemary dust was like a perfect bite of a summer garden. It was a very interesting play on textures, having the tomato both raw and in gelée form. 3) An Herb Mousse with Peaches, Pearl Couscous and Popcorn Dust – while texturally playful, it was much sweeter than expected. It was like they used kettle corn dust, when salty, buttery popcorn might have been a better flavor.

Amuse bouches #1 and 2

Amuse bouche #3

I love a good bread service, and at Fearrington, they don’t mind if you get all 3 breads (I did!) The Parmesan Cornbread, Epi Baguette and Whole Wheat Challah were all fabulous, but my favorite was the whole wheat challah. The REAL star of the show was the disk of softened butter that had been rolled in flaky sea salt – OMG – save me from myself!! Soft, warm bread with salty butter is heaven on Earth. It does not get any better than that, folks. Believe me! (The 5 exclamation marks used in this paragraph are warranted here!)

Ooh bread-ven is a place on Earth

My sweetheart and I opted for the seasonal 3 course tasting menu, and got more food than we could have ever bargained for. They definitely want you to leave full, and leave full we did. My first course was a Farm Fresh Egg with Asparagus, Parmesan Mousse, Quinoa, Mushrooms and Brown Butter. There must have been 3 different sauces on the plate, each better than the last. I love eggs and this dish elevated the humble ingredient so beautifully. I appreciated the umami from the parmesan, brown butter and egg yolk, and it made for a very satisfying first course.

For my main course, I enjoyed Seared Halibut with Peas Two Ways (mashed and puréed) with White Asparagus. The Halibut was cooked beautifully – it practically melted like butter under my fork – and I appreciated the contrasting textures to the tender fish. A really beautiful, light summer dish, and again with the multiple sauces. I detected a bit of mustard in one of them, which brought a necessary acidity to the dish.

A pre-dessert amuse bouche was a bite of Lemon Cake with Guava Mousse and a Shortbread Crumble. I thought the cake was fabulous and moist, but found the guava to be disappointing and oddly floral (and I just developed a newfound guava obsession thanks to my recent trip to Miami!) But alas, I was ready for my MAIN dessert.

I lost my marbles entirely for the Sticky Toffee Pudding with Butterscotch Sauce, Whipped Cream, Cream Cheese Ice Cream, Bruléed Bananas and a Maple Banana Bar. The cake was insanely tender and soaked up every bit of the butterscotch sauce that was poured tableside (I should have asked to keep the serving dish it was poured from!) The bruléed bananas had that lovely crème brûlée crunch, but the Maple Banana Bar really didn’t need to be on the plate – everything else just totally stole focus. I didn’t make many notes about this dish because I was so in the zone enjoying it. You cannot go wrong with sticky toffee pudding. Making it is a real labor of love but so, so worth the work!

I was 100% satisfied at this point, but when the server brings you a little tray of bite-sized nibbles to accompany your bill, it lessens the financial blow, and convinces me that I can find a little more room for these goodies. My favorites were the chewy Blueberry Caramel and the pillowy Coconut Marshmallow, but the Apricot Gummy and Mint Chocolate Wafers certainly earned their places on the board.

As if everything wasn't already enough, we received a box of beautiful truffles upon our departure, each with a unique fruit filling - lavender, raspberry, strawberry and orange. If you're keeping count, this marks dessert #4!! I love a little take home gift at the end of the night, and these jewels were *almost* too pretty to eat.

If you’re looking for a place near the Triangle to splurge, look absolutely no further. You will leave incredibly satisfied. The team at Fearrington will take fantastic care of you, and I was grateful for the opportunity to be in their hands.


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