From Hawaii to Texas for Dinner

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No, I’m not made of money. I didn’t actually fly from Hawaii to Texas for dinner, but some of the dinner I consumed was flown from Hawaii. We checked in at Travaasa Experiential Resort in Austin, Texas with 30 minutes to spare before our dinner reservations. New to the whole “farm to table” concept, I was excited but optimistically cautious at the same time. We were the first ones to arrive at Jean’s Kitchen and after spending the day traveling, I was looking forward to a quiet dinner, which is precisely what we got.

After perusing the drink menu, I ordered a Poinsetta (not the flower, that would be gross). It’s Waterloo Texas Gin, fresh cranberry juice topped off with sparkling white wine and a sprig of rosemary. My drink comes and I think I got jipped. There is no rosemary… I’m sure I’ll live, it’s not like I was going to save it for later. My husband ordered a drink called Texas Heat. It’s a concoction of Texas Treaty Oaks Rum, fresh lime juice, agave nectar, jalapeƱo and ginger ale. Any drink that’s made with jalapeƱos is no joke.

Texas Heat and Poinsetta dr

Texas Heat and Poinsetta drinks

It’s surprisingly good, though I could use some bread…

Here it is! It’s a 120 year old bread recipe and we get to dip it in olive oil and Fig Balsamic Vinegar from Texas Hill Country Olive Company. Are you seeing a pattern of the “farm to table” concept? Everything Jean’s Kitchen uses is locally sourced within a 200 mile radius with the exception of fresh fish they have shipped in.

Bread...duh

Bread…duh

Next is my appetizer, the Eggplant Torte. I can honestly say I have never had eggplant, so I thought I would try it. It was grilled black beauty eggplant (not that I would know the difference), heirloom tomato, shaved parmesan, basil oil and tomato foam. What the heck is tomato foam? I have no idea, but sometimes it’s best not to ask .

Eggplant Torte

Eggplant Torte

For the main course I selected Five Spice Dusted Opah. Opah is a Hawaiian fish that has a “meaty” texture. Served with chipotle mashed sweet potatoes and grilled red dragon beans with a yogurt chimichurri sauce.

Five Spice Dusted Opah

Five Spice Dusted Opah

When I spotted Texas Antelope Steak on the menu, I immediately knew that’s what my husband was going to order. Since I was born and raised in Kansas, all I could think about was the song I had to learn in grade school. “Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam and the deer and the antelope play…” Since my husband and I always share meals so that we can try different things, I tried the antelope steak too. It was extremely tender and not at all “gamey.” It came with a blue cheese crumble on top…I don’t do blue cheese. Just in case my taste buds have changed, I figured I should try it. Nope, I still don’t like it. I should get credit for trying it though.

Texas Antelope Steak

Texas Antelope Steak

For the best part, which is dessert in case you don’t know me… I ordered Orange Buttermilk pie. It sounds weird, but it was yummy. It had just enough citrus flavor tucked into a creamy buttermilk filling. And yes, I ate the strawberries too.

Orange Buttermilk Pie

Orange Buttermilk Pie

My husband, the die hard chocoholic, ordered the Chocolate Mousse Torte with raspberry coulis. He made me try it. I didn’t want to, but I did it because I love him…

Chocolate Mousse Torte

Chocolate Mousse Torte

The entire meal from beginning to end was delicious. My favorites were the eggplant torte, the antelope steak and dessert…both of them. The Opah fish was good, but a little on the dry side for my taste.

After dinner, we wandered around the grounds of the resort hoping to spot some stars in the sky. We found a welcoming camp fire and all of the ingredients to make s’mores. I had 2…

*** I stayed as a guest of Travaasa Experiential Resorts, however, the above statements are entirely my own opinion.***

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2 Responses to From Hawaii to Texas for Dinner

  1. Hmmm, an “Experiential” resort, you say? (Did I spell that correctly?) Wow, sounds really cool! What kinds of activities did you do while you were there? I’d love to hear more about it . . .

    • Valerie says:

      They have a variety of activities from trail rides to yoga to thier rock climbing wall. It was so much fun and I am missing the farm to table meals!

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