Sunday, May 9, 2010

Escape to Middleburg

For my very first Mother's Day as a mother, well, I have been sitting at home doing as little as possible, and that's been just about perfect. On Saturday, however, C decided that we must do something to celebrate, and we spent the day in Middleburg, Virginia. This little village in outer Loudoun County is perfect for getting away from life for a couple of hours.

There's not a lot to Middleburg, but there are some really special spots. One such spot is the French Hound, a quaint little inn, with a beautiful patio and fantastic views of the surrounding hills. I will not rave that the cuisine here is the best French food around, but it seems every dining experience I've had here is a memorable one. Last time, we had a perfect lunch on the patio; tasty and satisfying steak frites for both of us. For this outing, we brought along a couple of additional diners (a.k.a. baby holders) and soaked up the indoor setting. The terrine of foie gras, chicken liver mousse, and red wine demi glace excited our palates nicely. The wagyu beef tartare wasn't great; not as tender or flavorful as it could have been. Generally, the sandwiches were hits, as was the lobster pot pie. The heavy cream sauce was balanced by a light pastry, and vegetables that genuinely tasted fresh from the garden. And, finally, I don't know about you, but I for one find it sacrilegious to skip dessert at French restaurants. Our table split the apple fritters, or beignets aux pommes, which were scrumptious. Though I'm fairly certain that the ice cream was pralines and cream, rather than the advertised salted caramel (which I would have preferred), the donuts were perfect.

After a bit of shopping (cause really, a girl's always got to be in pursuit of something she needs desperately), we made sure to hit up the Market Salamander for some gourmet grub to take home. I first tried their pecan butterscotch scones three years ago, and have only missed them on one subsequent trip to Middleburg. Let me explain - they had already sold out, and I was almost in tears. But I digress, because I successfully retrieved my scones this time, and they are waiting for me in my freezer as I write this post, making me a happy girl.

And finally, as we do on almost every trip to Middleburg, we wrapped up the day at Chrysalis Vineyards. I'm a big fan of this winery; Sarah's Patio Red (a chilled Norton blend) and Sarah's Patio White are rather constant presences on our wine rack. On this particular outing, we concluded our relaxing day by sitting on the patio enjoying a bottle of Norton, because that's what proper Virginians (forget Missouri) should do. It was a relaxing conclusion to a relaxing day, a perfect Mother's Day gift. Good job C!

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