December 31, 2009

Cork and Snowflakes

The air was cold and still – the calm before the storm – as we walked to the restaurant. It was the night before the big snowstorm that brought this city to a halt. Jonathan and I were venturing out to have dinner at Cork Restaurant & Wine Bar on 14th Street.

We arrived at our destination and escaped the cold. The atmosphere of Cork is cozy and rustic with a dark wood and brick interior. We were promptly seated and began reviewing the menu. (Call 30 minutes prior to your arrival to place your name on the wait list.)

The wine list contains a many different options from all over the globe, but focuses on European wines. We ordered wine flights off the chalkboard by the bar. While I enjoyed the selections I received, Jonathan was less excited. However, he was happy with the wine he ordered by the glass after that. Coming from California we are used to seeing more wines from that region, the Pacific Northwest, Australia, or New Zealand on the menu. I found the increased choices from European vintners a welcome change for me.

Now, for food, we ordered several different tapas to share. By far our favorite food item was the sauteed mushrooms. They were wonderful – wild mushrooms perfectly prepared with marjoram and madeira. After finishing our first order, we asked our server to bring more! In addition we enjoyed the oil-cured tomatoes on grilled bread. This dish was also intensely flavorful and good to share. Other tapas we tried were the cheese plate, the charcuterie selection, and the duck. While everything was good, the mushrooms and oil-cured tomatoes were most memorable and what I look forward to going back to eat again soon!

And then we ordered dessert. Even though there was an good sounding chocolate dessert on the menu I selected the goat cheese cake. It turned out to be an excellent decision! The cheesecake was creamy and delicious with a subtle goat cheese flavor.

By the time we left Cork, we walked out into a winter wonderland. While we were dining the snowflakes had begun to fall and the city was blanketed in a sparkling layer of white!

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