Tag Archives: gnocchi

Fleurie, Charlottesville

Spending one night in Charlottesville, Virginia didn’t leave us much time to explore – so we headed straight downtown to check out the bustling pedestrian mall and see the sights before dinner.

Charlottesville downtown pedestrian mall

Charlottesville downtown founding fathers

Charlottesville chalk

Charlottesville City Hall had installed a huge chalk wall for the public to celebrate the First Amendment of the US Constitution. We took a moment to exercise our freedom of speech – or freedom to doodle!

Charlottesville chalk writing

Then we hit the shops! I was so happy to come across Caspari’s American outpost (the other is in Paris). I used to shop their products at Partridge’s in London – and this was my first visit to their bricks and mortar store.

Where interior design inspiration abounds!

Charlottesville Caspari store

Charlottesville Caspari dining

Charlottesville Caspari showroom

My little head was on a swivel – so many ways to beautify a home!

Charlottesville Caspari dining table setting

Charlottesville Caspari shelving

I had to stop and coo over these preppy dog accessories – and ponder the question ,“Exactly when will we ever get a puppy?”

Charlottesville Caspari dog accessories collars

As the shops shuttered up for the evening, we traipsed down to dinner at a little French bistro called Fleurie.

Charlottesville Fleurie entrance

Fleurie Charlottesville patio terrace outdoor al fresco dining

The perfect quiet little spot to dine al fresco in downtown Charlottesville!

Charlottesville Fleurie cheers drinks

Fleurie Sip Drink Cocktail Final

Chilled Tomato Soup with salmon rillette

Chilled Tomato Soup with salmon rillette

Lobster Bisque with tarragon

Lobster Bisque with tarragon

Gnocchi, Bleu d'Auvergne Fondue, sweet pecans, cherry tomatoes

Gnocchi, Bleu d’Auvergne Fondue, sweet pecans, cherry tomatoes

Herb Crusted Halibut, summer squashes, white wine sauce

Herb Crusted Halibut, summer squashes, white wine sauce

Wolf Creek Grass-fed Beef Sirloin, Gnocchi Parisienne, Leeks, Bordelaise

Wolf Creek Grass-fed Beef Sirloin, Gnocchi Parisienne, leeks, Bordelaise

I’ve been mostly steering clear of sugar and gluten this summer, but when I’m out at a nice restaurant all rules fly out the window.

Not one to be put off by an imminent sugar crash, it was time for dessert…

Vanilla Bean Créme Brulée

Vanilla Bean Créme Brulée

Peach Pithier, Raspherries, Vanilla Ice Cream

Peach Pithier, raspberries, vanilla ice cream

Petit Fours: Chocolate hazelnut truffles, Lemon meringue tarts, Cherry financiers

Petit Fours: Chocolate hazelnut truffles, Lemon meringue tarts, Cherry financiers

lemon_tart

Summer nights like these are the sweetest!

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Manuka Kitchen

Last night was one of those nights – there was nothing in the fridge but random condiments and a few limp vegetables, and I couldn’t be bothered to go grocery shopping and then cook. A perfectly justifiable excuse to dine out! So I threw on a snuggly knit cape and moseyed down to a cherished local hotspot, Manuka Kitchen.

I’m crazy for their brunch, but had not yet been for dinner. Let me just say it was so good, I had to go up to the kitchen counter afterwards and thank the chef for the best gnocchi I’ve had in recent memory. On top of everything – the convenient Fulham Road location, the pared down rustic atmosphere, the excellent yet affordable wine list – the service is the real kicker. You’ve gotta love a place where the owner waits on you.  Joseph is the nicest guy – warm smile, affable, and of course knowledgable about everything on the menu. The whole experience was sweet as Manuka honey!

Does this look like a face that wants to cook tonight?

Does this look like a face that wants to cook tonight?

man3

man4

Potato gnocchi | zucchini, sweet peppers & blue cheese crumble

Potato gnocchi | zucchini, sweet peppers & blue cheese crumble

Bavette | Jersey Royals, confit carrot, caper & horseradish butter, watercress

Bavette | Jersey Royals, confit carrot, caper & horseradish butter, watercress

man1I might put off the grocery shopping a little more often!