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This Week at Good Eats – September 11, 2014


Lots to talk about this week and so, for those of you on a time crunch, we’ll cover the menu first thing. The soup will be Cream of Curried Sweet Potato, then entrees are Henny Penny, Scallops Sublime, a dish we wrote about last year, Grilled Pork Rib-eye “Serendipity” with marinated tomatoes, butter beans and corn, topped with a cheese glaze, Tuna with a Preserved Lemon Aioli, Flounder topped with Buttered Backfin Crabmeat, and Hanger Steak with Caramelized Onions and Bordelaise Sauce. The hanger steak dish comes directly from last Saturdays French Wine Dinner, and will be good with any number of the red wines on our list. In developing this dish for the wine dinner, I figured out how to give body and substance to the classic brown sauces without the expense and hassle of roasting bones and making a 16 hour glace de viande as the first step. Now I’m on a mission.

Speaking of wine dinners, Thursday, Sept. 25th is the date of the next one. No theme or menu yet, will address that next week, but here’s what we do know. 4 courses of food and wine pairings for $55 a person, the start time is 6:30, and the Mistress of Ceremonies pouring and explaining the wines will be our old friend Dorie Spaven. Reservations for both this week-end and the wine dinner can be made by calling Good Eats at 804-472-4385.

We have changed our hours of operation at SpunTino. It’s a silly reason I suppose, but we are mostly dependent on the sun to light that space, and so until the lights and fans go in, we will be operating there from Noon – 5:00pm, Wednesday – Saturday.
This week is the start of something new at SpunTino. A number of you have commented on how inexpensively we price the same wines you have bought elsewhere for more. That will continue, of course, and now we are going to add to it. We are starting a “Wines of the Week” feature, in which we will offer 1 white wine and 1 red wine, by the case of 12 only, at great deals. To start, let’s offer everyone’s favorite, Meiomi Pinot Noir. Everyday retail at SpunTino is $17.99 a bottle, this week by the case for $186.00. And the Nals Margried Pinot Grigio, retail by the bottle for $14.99, this week $152.00 for the case. OK, so how do these deals work? The “week” starts on Thursday (today) and ends the next Wednesday at 3pm. You can order either by email, phone, or in person.  If you order through email we need to be able to call you back for the credit card information because email is not secure. Your wine will be available for pickup on the next day, Thursday after 2pm. If you are a part-timer in the area and would like to take advantage of these deals we have room to store your wine until you can pick it up. And that’s it, simple and sweet. Oh wait, one more thing, if you’d like to try our specials before committing to buying a case, we will have tastes available at SpunTino. (see new hours above)

That’s the food news this week, thanks always for your great support and

We hope to see you.

This Week at Good Eats – August 28, 2014 (Also open Sunday)


Welcome to Labor Day week-end!

In honor of the holiday we’ll be laboring; both Good Eats Cafe and Spuntino will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday. If you’re in the area we’ll have lots of delicious choices for your meal-time pleasure. On the menu at Good Eats is Fantasticks, Summer Risotto with Soft Shell Crabs, Scallops Sublime, Flounder topped with Buttered Backfin Crabmeat, Grilled Pork Rib-eye with Honeyed Peaches and Watermelon, and Crab Pasta. Reservations are made by calling 804-472-4385.

And then, at the close of business Sunday night, we go on vacation, our annual Fall break. All next week everything on the property will be closed as we rest up and turn our attention to the autumn season. All closed up to all except those who are into wine dinners.

On Saturday Sept 6, we will be presenting a French wine dinner. We rarely get to do these dinners on Saturday nights, so we are pulling out all the stops for this one. The simple version of the menu looks like this:

Galette of late-summer vegetables

Consomme of Shellfish

Stuffed Roulades of Flounder

Grilled Hanger Steak Bordelaise

(which is a show-stopper dessert based on pate aux choux)

The matching wines are still to be determined, but Matt Leader from the Country Vintner will be here to explain and serve the final choices. The evening starts at 6:30, is 5 courses with matching wines, and the cost is $65 per person. If you’d like to attend you can either call Good Eats or reply to this mail.

That’s the good food news this week, thank you for your strong support and

We hope to see you.

This Week at Good Eats – August 21, 2014


Time to take a little break from making peach reduction and rolling out pate brisee for the cheese tarts for tonight’s wine dinner. For those of you who wish you could attend one of these events but are not in the area or otherwise available on Thursdays, our next wine dinner will be held on Saturday Sept. 6, made possible because Good Eats and SpunTino will otherwise be closed for the 9 days following Labor Day, our annual fall break. The theme of that dinner will be French wine, five courses of pairings for $65. Reservations can be made either by email or by calling Good Eats at 804-472-4385. The menu will be announced next week.

More news about next week will follow in the next paragraph. First though, here’s what will be on the menu this week: Flounder with Buttered Backfin Crabmeat, a new dish, Grilled Pork Rib-eye with Honeyed Peaches and Watermelon (my practice dish for tonight’s Peach Reduction; nailed it last Saturday!), Hanger Steak with Portabella Mushroom Sauce, as well as Crab Pasta, Scallops Sublime and the Summer Risotto with Soft Shell Crabs (and heirloom toms, butter beans and corn). Call that same number above for dinner reservations.

Good Eats will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights for Labor Day week-end, and SpunTino will be open Wed – Sunday as well. Maybe we’ll do a “best of the summer” compilation for that menu.

Ok, back to work. Thank you always for your strong support and

We hope to see you.

This Week at Good Eats – August 14, 2014


Or should I say WOW! Thanks so much to all of you who made the effort to come and celebrate our 17th birthday last week-end. We sincerely hope you had a wonderful time and a memorable meal.

Can’t live in the past though, so we have a new line-up of menu choices for you to peruse. The soup this week is Golden Zucchini with Basil, entrees are Flounder with Buttered Backfin Crabmeat, a new dish, Grilled Pork Rib-eye with Honeyed Peaches and Watermelon, Hanger Steak with Portabella Mushroom Sauce, as well as Crab Pasta, Scallops Sublime and the Summer Risotto with Soft Shell Crabs (and heirloom toms, butter beans and corn). Reservations are made by calling 804-472-4385.

A quick note: SpunTino will no longer be open on Sundays, not that this affects anyone other than myself, ha. So now, Wed – Saturday, noon – 7pm.

We are presenting a wine dinner next Thursday, August 21st. The theme for the wine is California, which makes it a pretty big theme. Did you know, if California was a country, it would be the 4th largest wine-producing nation in the world? So the research was a blast, as has been the time spent designing the menu items. Here’s a quick sketch of the dinner, which is four courses with wines, for $55 per person:

Three-cheese Tart
Paul Hobbs Rose of Pinot Noir

House-made Crab Ravioli
2012 Caymus Conundrum White

Breast of Duck with a Peach Reduction
2010 Casey Flat Ranch Open Range Red
(and looking for a cabernet sauvignon as an additional pairing)

Terrine of Fruit with Almond Cream
wine to be determined this week-end

If you’re interested in attending, either reply to this mail or call Good Eats.

That’s the good food news for this week. Thank you again for your STRONG support, thank you, and

We hope to see you.

This Week at Good Eats – Aug 7, 2014 (17 years in business!)


Earlier this week, doing that business owner thing musing about the present, past and future, it suddenly dawned that Aug. 8 is the day Good Eats opened way back in 1997; we have just completed our 17th year in business. WE is the key word here. As you read at the close of every one of these mails, “Thank you so much for your strong support and”. If not for you deciding that it’s important to you that you have a place where you can get a meal freshly prepared with the best local ingredients, with a list of wines chosen to augment the dining experience, Good Eats certainly would not have made it to today. So, let’s raise a glass to US, and keep this party going!

On this weeks menu you will find the Summer Risotto with Soft Shell Crabs, Shrimp & Grits, Scallops Sublime, Fantasticks, Salmon with Thai Red Curry, and Crab Pasta. Good Eats indeed.

Thank you so much for your strong support and

We hope to see you.

This Week at Good Eats – July 31, 2014


Lots going on today so you get away with a short one.

Maybe you remember the optimistic tone back the beginning of June that it felt like we were going to have a summer season in the Northern Neck; that was when we went back to the full permanent summer menu. And on the 3-day holidays there are a ton of people all over the Neck, but week to week, it just isn’t so. So starting this weekend Good Eats will go back to the weekly menus that were a staple the last two years. But you won’t care, there will be plenty of really good options. This week the menu will feature the Summer Risotto with Soft Shell Crabs (which we were still getting email compliments on yesterday), as well as Salmon with Thai Red Curry Sauce, Scallops Sublime, Shrimp and Grits, Crab Pasta and Fantasticks. With Prime Rib off the menu, if you are looking for a beef-centric dinner ask for “just beef sticks” from the Fantasticks.

The Westmoreland Players have a production opening this week-end which will run for the next three weeks. If you are planning to attend, Good Eats will make it easy to get to the show on time on for the Friday and Saturday performances and SpunTino is open both before and after the matinees.

The wine dinner tonight sold out again, thank you so much. Next dinner will be held Thursday August 21, more on that later.

Thank you so much for your support and

We hope to see you.

This Week at Good Eats – July 24, 2014


Well it sure did take awhile after that cold spring but the local crop of summer produce is now in full swing, and of course we take advantage, starting with an Italian Tomato and Bread Soup. Flush with the goodness of ripe tomatoes, finished with generous handfuls of fresh basil, and the croutons become like soft pillows, absorbing it all. It’s a similar theme also for Summer Risotto with Soft Shell Crab, known locally as a Northern Neck summer in a bowl what with the addition of tomatoes, corn and butter beans. We had mentioned the stupid price of the meat we use for Prime Rib; this is definitely the last week it will be available here until the cost becomes sensible again. Reservations for the Cafe can be made by calling 804-472-4385.

We also mentioned that we would be doing another wine dinner at SpunTino next Thursday night, 4-courses with matching wines, $55 per person, starting at 6:30. The menu is set, our samples for pairing arrive today, and then we will announce them. In the meantime here is the menu:

Salad of Walnuts, Golden Raisins, Bacon and Blue Cheese Straws

Roast Salmon Fruits de Mer 

Rack of Lamb Chops on a bed of White Beans and Red Rice

Fresh Gingerbread with Caramel Fruit Compote

For reservations call the Cafe phone listed above.

The “flights” of wines we started last week were very well received so we’ll do that again this week. Jim is now really into flights; come by and we bet you will be too.

That’s the good food news this week, thanks always for your support and

We hope to see you.

This Week at Good Eats – July 17, 2014


Yes the Cafe is open Friday and Saturday this week, all the crew is back at work. Doing the wine dinners sure was fun though, both for those who got to taste and dine and for those who got to cook and pair. So much fun that we spent some time figuring out how to do wine dinners even while the Cafe is open, and, get your calendars ready, two weeks from today, Thursday July 31st we will do a 4-course dinner with matching wines at 6:30pm, priced at $55. Same phone number as for Cafe reservations, 804-472-4385. We will post menu and pairings on our website within a day or two, but we already know rack of lamb will be one of the red wine courses. Back to the Cafe, … those of you who are fans of our prime rib might want to make an effort to come this weekend. The wholesale price of our quality meat has pushed past $9 a pound and refuses to come down. We bought in big back when the price was closer to $7 a pound, but this week is probably the end of our reserve.

At SpunTino this weekend we are going to offer “flights” of the wines we serve by the glass. In our case a flight will be 3 – 2oz glasses, and we will have four different groupings available. The beauty of the flight idea is that over the course of just one meal you get to try, then decide for yourself what is your favorite of each variety. The groupings will be: sauvignon blanc, pinot gris/pinot grigio, chardonnay and pinot noir.

Over the last couple of weeks we have been announcing that cooking classes would resume again. Seems the summer is the wrong season to try to do the format we were offering and so have decided to postpone offering classes for now. Maybe this fall, maybe a different format, we’ll see.

That’s the good food news, thanks always for your strong support and

We hope to see you.