This small restaurant in downtown New Bern has a pleasant feel, a nice wood bar and a chef who should be in a much bigger city, but those who live here really hope he stays. Ashley Moser is as creative with a variety of cuisines as any chef I have sampled in Raleigh, D.C., NYC or beyond.
They serve lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday and brunch on Sunday. And, once a month, they feature a special wine dinner that focuses on the cuisine and wine of a particular country or region. If you can get to one of these, do not miss the chance.
We attended a Portuguese wine dinner recently and it was superb. The first course was a light fried bacalhau (cod) fish fritter and second course was caldo verde, a classic Portuguese soup based on greenery (kale here) with the added touches of cauliflower, liguica (sausage) and thin fried cornbread. The wines for each were a Spanish reserve Brut (Portugal has no real bubbly wine) and a nice medium light white from the famous Douro wine region of northern Portugal. The third course was lobster with a piri piri sauce (spicy and flavorful), fennel and arugula. The two wines were a Vinho Verde and a lovely Douro red. Carne de porco A'Alentejana (classic Portuguese shredded pork and clams) was the fourth course, with duck fat potato sections and another fine Douro red wine. The fifth and final course was hanger steak Con un Buo A Cavalo with mushrooms, accompanied by a slight sweet Quinta de Garrida Vinho Tinto. Every guest looked very happy when they left.
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