Monday, September 29, 2014

A Night in the Village (Lawrenceville's Main Street)

In 2012, Lawrenceville Main Street kicked of a new event -- call it a movable feast, a taste of local restaurants, a walking restaurant tour, or it's official name "A Night in the Village," you get the idea.

The event is the biggest annual fundraiser for Lawrenceville Main Street (LMS). LMS is most famous around here for their Music in the Park summer series of Thursday night concerts in Weeden Park.

For each of the three years they have been blessed with absolutely perfect outdoor dining weather. The other two years I walked home from church, saw everyone enjoying their meals and wished I could join them. This year I talked Nancy into joining me (she, too, had been thinking about going). 

We went to the second seating (at 6:30) in order that I could attend worship at the Presbyterian Church of Lawrenceville. I really like their WiNK (Worship in a New Key) 5 PM service and did not want to miss it.

The event was extremely well organized. We were to visit 11 places within a two block radius in 3 hours. Each place was slotted for a 15 minute window, but we were the only ones enforcing that. We knew we would have to hustle to enjoy every last morsel.

Personally I feel we had the best schedule. We were walking group F, meaning five other groups left before us.

Our first stop was Chamber's Walk Cafe for butternut squash soup and some other tiny appetizer (I knew I should have written this a week ago when it was all still fresh in my mind!).

A quick turn around to Enzo's, which is not located on Main Street. They set up a station in front of Wealth Strategies, a business on Gordon Street. Enzo's served us tiny meatball, salad, and toast (all picture).

By 7 PM we were having tapas at Wildflour Bakery/Cafe. They are a gluten free and vegetarian dining establishment.

By this point we've had many wonderful appetizers and were ready for our main course. That's why I feel we had the best tour! Our next stop was Leonardo's II. We love Leonardo's. Rob and Marta (Mary Magdelena) both greeted me as if I was returning home. I need to go back. Again, a restaurant not located on Main Street, so they set up shop in Melz Salon, a hair salon. We took our plate of chicken and butternut squash gnocchi outside and dined on their front porch. The idea of eating where hair is cut is a little gross to me (the place was spotless, more my hang up). I want to go back to Leonardo's for more butternut squash gnocchi. Fortunately the event came with a wine bag and coupon for most of the establishments involved.

The half-way point was Fedora Cafe -- my go to restaurant when meeting friends. Fedora's outdid themselves with table clothes and centerpieces. They dressed themselves up for us. We had the choice of butternut squash soup or salad with quinoa, apples, squash, walnuts, feta cheese, dried raspberries, roasted garlic and honey vinaigrette. The portion was enormous! It took us every bit of our fifteen minutes to finish it. ;) 

It was tough, but we pressed on (or is that waddled?) next door to Acacia. Acacia served us a sampling of mini meatball, kale and something else (pictured below the salad). Delicious!

Stop #8 was another favorite restaurant located temporarily in a hair salon: Amalfi's located in the Mane Design. Amalfi's had delicious chicken and pizza. Nancy and I dined in salon chairs. I should have taken a picture of that!

At 8:15 we walked up Philips Avenue to Vidalia's. It was the end of the night and they were cleaning up. They served a beet side dish, and two other side dishes (that if I wrote this when I should have, I would share with you). It as good, but we were stuffed and still had three more stops to make!

Cherry Grove Farm set up a cheese tasting in Bambu Yoga -- a yoga studio that opened earlier in the week. One of the cheeses was soaked in cider from Terhune Orchards. One of the cheese (maybe the same one) was paired with 3 Monkeys Mustard, which started a couple of blocks away in a neighborhood kitchen and has evolved to earn the World Mustard Award two years in a row. Having the cheese course just before dessert was perfect timing!

The evening ended with a scoop of pumpkin ice cream (my choice) from Purple Cow and a chocolate cupcake from the Gingered Peach, slated to open on October 18. The dessert was even more perfect by listening to Stringzville serenade us.

It was a perfect evening.

I then waddled my way 3/4 of a mile to my house.

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