“…so how was your weekend, fivenineteen?”  Not rushing things at all here for the weekend ain’t over yet – still some good stuff coming up, including maybe a nap, some laundry, watching hockey (Canucks vs. Wild) and playing hockey later tonight. 

Great food, drink, laughter and conversation are huge cornerstone essentials for me.  And I can’t blog enough about that, really – it’s just so how I am I don’t promise to ever stop.  Hmmm…that last sentence was a little clunky but let’s move on.

So when I got invited to be the Host’s guest at a dinner party for 10, I swooned.  Didn’t matter that I would only know him and would be meeting everyone else for the first time.  I shed shyness long ago.  And did I mention the Host is a guy I’ve been on just a few dates with over the last couple weeks?  OK, a few = four, including this dinner party.  This is a group of incredible foodies – his incredible friends.  I felt so honored he’d asked me to join.  And I pinch myself to remind me that yes, it’s only been a couple weeks…exciting with a healthy dose of mutual nervous.  Didn’t I put it out to the Universe late in December that I was tired of being single and really wanting to meet someone special? [Answering my own question…YES, I sure as hell did.]  I’ve only turned a few pages in this story so far.  No need to rush and skip ahead.  Like a great meal, I’m savoring it.

And this was a dinner experience like none I’d ever had before – BONUS for I love new adventures in food.  This was a potluck meal planned backwards and eaten forwards.  This Supper Club meets a few times a year for a dinner like this and rotates who hosts…and there’s always a different Theme each time. 

Last night’s Theme was Rustic French.  I was blown out of the water impressed with not only the food choices, but how they were plated – simply gorgeous and heavenly. 

Check out our menu!

Appetizer 1:  frog legs on a bed of Arugula (yep, Host butchered himself), venison pate on toasted bread, and venison sausage with cherry-cranberry mustard.  Did I mention the venison was from a deer Host hunted himself?  Impressive.  Check out the photo up top.  OK, I sheepishly admit I was a tad squeamish about trying frogs legs (first time for everything eh?) but they seriously do taste like chicken.

Appetizer 2:  Artichoke with a Dijon vinaigrette and mushrooms a la Grecque.

Salad:  Arugula with sliced pear, walnuts, roquefort and mustard-walnut oil dressing.

Ready for more?

Entree #1:  Coq au vin.  By now the taste buds were in high gear – and each course had its own unique wine pairing as well.  Love the mmms and yummms heard ’round the table…that au jus was so to die for flavorful that if it came as a lipgloss flavor I’d buy it.

Entree #2:  a trio of confit on mini baguette.  Olive oil poached fennel and garlic paired with fromage blanc, one with duck and the 3rd with pork.  Did I mention the baguette was made from scratch too?  3 fabulous mini sandwiches.

Dessert:  dulce de leche-topped cheesecake, served with shortbread and 3 apple slices.

Whew.  And thanks to D, fellow guest (and food blogger extraordinaire), for documenting this amazing experience and for the pic above – yep, I’m shamelessly perma-borrowing it plus some details I’d missed about our food.

And while there’s much more that happened after the last bite was savored, the last bit of wine enjoyed and the last guests had gone home, I’m gonna play the discreet card.  Let’s just say there was a lot of lingering 1:1 over coffee this morning. 

“…so when can I see you again?”  Words that make me smile and melt my heart.  The answer is Tuesday and there will be some (hopefully fantastic) chowder from one of my favorite recipes – potatoes, fennel, a little cayenne pepper sauce and…bacon. 

My turn to host – and I can’t wait.