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Well, we were scheduled to go up to the Philly environs to test swim in an Endless Pool (their factory is in Aston). My wife gets the great idea to make it coincident to the Philadelphia Flower Show and I figure on the way back we should hit Tom's restaurant that this board kibitzed on during it's creation.

We hit Wilmington around 2PM. I wasn't sure what our schedule was going to be so I didn't book in advance, but Tom's wife who answered the phone gave us several options (eating early, bistro table in the bar). We chose to reserve one of the Bistro tables at 7:30.

We arrived and were promptly shown to our table, our coats stowed. While the table was small, we had a side board next to us to move the excess to. The restaurant full both every table and every seat at the bar. There were a few couples also standing waiting for space to open.

We were given four documents on our arrival: The wine list, the wines by the glass list, the menu, and the cheese list.

We decided to start off with the cheese. Hudson offers plates of either 3 or 5 cheeses from the list. We chose Bayley Haven Blue, Cashel Blue, Pave d'Auge, Rabiola Rochetta, and Ossau au Piment d'Esplette. We hopped over to the by the glass list and chose a Capa Blanca Chardonnay (not bad), Airlie 7 (a mix of 7 varietals, sounded interesting, slightly sweet), and Chateau Montesquieu Cote de Roussillon.

Here's where we saw one fine feature of the restaurant, each by the glass is offered in 1.5, 3, or 5 oz pours. This let us get a flight to mix with the flight of cheeses without dulling our senses to oblivion for the later courses.

Next my wife had the California Greens Salad which she said was excellent and not screaming of any of the particular ingredients invdividually. I had the clam & scallop chowder which was fabulous. A small hint of bacon and everything delicately done so as not to overpower the scallops. We both had the Keller Trocken Riesling with this course.

My wife for the main course had the petite version of the Wild Salmon (another great idea about half the main courses are offered in both a petite and grand size). They were offering a special of veal chop. This was larger than I was expecting, but also fabulous and paired nicely with the Blind Trail Pinot Noir.

My wife is a "crisp" and "cobbler" junky so she had to get the "winter crisp" they offered. Again well prepared without a ton of topping pastry as many tend to be. I was going to forgo desert until they announced a special of peanut butter moouse in a chocholate shell which was good. My wife wanted Sauternes so without any other reason to do otherwise we both chose the Chateau Sahuc.

My hat is off, we had a wonderful time, and the extensive by the glass selection meant that we enjoyed six different wines over the course of the evening and still was legal to drive back to the hotel.

I'd recommend giving this place a try if you're heading to Philly or just passing through up the
I-95/NJT corridor.
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We finally made it to Domaine Hudson this weekend, and it was worth the wait. We could not have asked for a better time and it exceeded all expectations.

We were greeted by Meg as we came in and she showed us to a table in the window. We were quite impressed by the place, quiet, serene, yet obviously well run.

Our server came to the table with two flights of Champagne and sparklers as we looked at the menu and decided what we wanted. They were

Fabrice Gasnier "La Cravantine" ROSE Sparkling Chinon (NV)
Aubry "Premier Cru" Champagne (NV)
Domaine Barmes Buecher Cremant d'Alsace (2006)

After they were delivered, Tom came over and we talked wine, the WS crew, and Wilmington. He is a nice guy and I was pleased to finally meet him. I asked him to choose what we drank that evening and we started what was a long and fantastic evening of great food and wine.

We started with a cheese plate: Tuxford & Tebbutt Stilton, Crottin de Chavignol, and Drunken Goat. All were excellent and served with crackers, olives (BTW Tom, My wife wants to know where she can get those olives, she loved them.) and fig spread.

Served with the cheese was a flight of Rieslings

Chehalem "Reserve" Dry Riesling (2006)
Freiherr von Heddesdorff "Trocken" Riesling (2007)
Peter Mertes "Privatkellerei" Riesling Kabinett (2007)

We then progressed to the Domaine Hudson Mixed Salad (baby greens, apple, Jicma, and an orange-champagne vinaigrette)for my wife and a small plate of the jumbo sea scallops (4 large scallops with mashed carrots, pumpkin seeds, pomegranates and a walnut-maple butter sauce) for me. They were perfectly cooked and some of the best scallops I've ever eaten.

Tom then dipped into his cellar and brought out a 2005 Loring Paso Robles Russell Family Vineyard Pinot Noir. He served it in two glasses, one a traditional burgundy glass, the other an Oregon pinot noir glass (with a curved up rim) so we could see how different they tasted based on the glass. I was supprised, but they tasted different based on the glass. The burgundy glass tended to deposit the wine further back on the tongue and gave it a totally different feel and sensation. In any case, it was a wonderful Loring, lots of wild berrys and pomegranate with spice and nicely balanced oak. Wonderful wine.

My wife then ordered the flatiron steak, served with asparagus, exotic mushrooms, romaine and gorgonzola cream. She loved it. I ordered the Free-Range duck breast, with a fennel-papaya slaw and a citrus vinaigrette. To accompany them Tom produced an absolutely stunning 2004 Quinta do Valle Meao Douro. I wish I had some of this wine so I could cellar it for 5 or more years. It was inky and powerful. Flavors of plum, mocha, spices, beef and smoke with fine tannins and a long finish. What a huge and powerful wine. Wonderful.

For dessert Karen ordered the chocolate and zucchini brownie while I had the blackberry sauvignon sorbet. Both were excellent, especially since they were accompanied by a wonderful South African sticky. A 2001 Vinde Constance Klein Constantia. Karen's favorite of the night.

I can't tell you how wonderful the meal was. Great food, fantastic wine, wonderful service, and two wonderful people to thank for it. Tom and Meg, you have a great place here, I know you will do well. Thank you so much for making this anniversary a memorable one. I know that I will stop in every time I find myself in the area. I also highly recommend it to anyone who loves great food and great wines.
Last edited by dinwiddie
irwin,

Not the best area and Karen severly broke an ankle last year and still has difficulty walking any distance without pain, especially in the shoes she was wearing (hey we did dress up for this dinner you know).

Board-O,

That is what I asked the bell captain and he said that none of the cab companies are offering service downtown in the evenings for some reason. There was another couple from DC there asking for a cab too and they were as amazed to find it out as we were. If the Hotel Dupont couldn't get a cab, I doubt that we could have.
A recent ’06 LeCadeau tasting dinner at Domaine Hudson in Wilmington:

Salad of poached salmon with broccoli rabe, fig compote, roasted late fall squash, “Diversite”

Quail breast with lobster gnocchi, lobster-salmis sauce, tarragon-glazed carrots,
“Rocheaux”

Veal Saltimbocca, cheesy polenta, escarole, proscuitto, smoked tomato nage,
“Cote Est”

Crispy monkfish with red onion compote, leeks, pistachios, spiced jus,
“Equinox” (my pairing of the night)

Red wine poached pears with autumn spices and honey mascarpone

Arriving a bit early, a perfect prelude of NV Domaine Gasnier La Cravantine was poured. As the evening drew to a close, a magnificent ’77 Niepoort framed a relaxed conversation with hosts Tom and Meg Hudson.

Although Tom Mortimer was unable to join the “sold out” event, everyone truly enjoyed the exceptional wines and culinary excellence of Co-Executive chefs Jason Barrowcliff and Mark Doto. Couple this with gracious hospitality, superb service, and warm and comfortable surroundings, you will understand why so many folks appreciate Domaine Hudson.

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