What do rabbit, duck, mussels and trout have in common?
They are all animals that we sampled for dinner the two nights we went out for Greenville restaurant week, of course ;o)
Apparently restaurant weeks are commonplace--after a quick Google search, I even ascertained that Connecticut has one. The difference about Greenville's restaurant week is that they actually advertise it. We knew about it over a week in advance thanks to a television commercial, and although we rarely eat out, we couldn't pass up the opportunity to try some of the city's more prestigious restaurants. As middle-class new home owners, we normally don't have the expendable cash to eat at restaurants whose minimum entree price is $30 or more, but we will always take the opportunity to pay $30 per person for a three-course meal at said restaurants.
Tuesday night we ate at American Grocery on Greenville's West End. This restaurant is of a different sort, in that they purchase the vast majority of their ingredients from South Carolina. In fact, all of their butter and milk come from the Happy Cow Dairy, which is right up the road from where my parents live! The highlights of this meal were my rabbit & gnocchi stew appetizer, Steve's trout entree, and my Panna Cotta with blood orange sauce dessert. Even if you don't live in the Greenville area, I completely suggest finding a nearby restaurant that serves mainly organic and/or locally purchased food, as I can only imagine that if a restaurant goes out of its way to serve food made from this ingredients, everything about the meal will be wonderful.
Our experience on Tuesday made me decide that we simply couldn't pass up trying another restaurant. After perusing the menus that the participating restaurants had posted on the Restaurant Week Greenville Website, we settled on High Cotton (also in downtown Greenville) and invited my parents along for the ride. We ate there last night and again had a great meal for just $30 per person. Honestly, I was more impressed with the selection on the American Grocery menu, but my crab soup appetizer was one of the best crab soups I've ever had. We all chose the New York Strip for dinner, and it was probably the highest quality New York Strip I've ever eaten. And thankfully, the creme brulee that we had for dessert was prepared properly. (You have no idea how many restaurants are half-assed in their preparation of creme brulee!) High Cotton actually has a restaurant in Charleston as well, so if you ever make your way there or here, I would say it's a good choice for a special night out :o)
Of course, now we will be eating at home until our next vacation, because even with the decent pricing that Restaurant Week provided, we spent a bit too much on eating out this week!