Wednesday, February 16, 2005

our big night out

Monday night was our big Valentine's Day outting and we had a wonderful time, despite the bitterly cold and wet weather. We found ourselves downtown at the fabulous L'Illustre. It's located in the pedestrian shopping area and the facade is all half-timbered. It looks deceptively small, but inside are three floors of dining space! It's huge!

We were lead to a table in what was once a cave, or huge cellar. The walls are old stone and there are brick archways everywhere. In honor of Le Fete de Saint Valentin, the lights were very low, with candles and rose petals on every table.

The restaurant offered a special menu for the occassion, so instead of spending thirty minutes perusing the dinner menu, aperitif menu, dessert menu, etc., we chose the simple way out. We started with champagne aperitifs, and chose different entrees - Steph had the coquilles de St Jacques (scallops) and I had the foie gras. That was a first! It was served with spiced bread and was pretty good, if I do say so myself.

For the main course, we both chose the filet de boeuf, which was a delicious cut of beef with truffles and morille mushrooms, with potatoes au gratin and a baked tomato with herbs. Our menu came with a decent Bordeaux (I suppose if I think really hard I could tell you the name of it).

Dessert was a charlotte, which is a small cake with strawberries on top, then left in the freezer to chill for a few hours, and then surrounded with creme. Very very tasty but so huge I couldn't even finish it!

We really had a wonderful night and while it was a bit expensive, we don't go out so much so it was a really special treat.

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