We had quite the treat on Monday night – an evening at the Inn at Little Washington!
Remember when Matt and I stayed at the Inn back in May with our parents? (<– Check out that post for more on the history of the famous Inn!) Well, my family loves it so much they wanted to go back and see it when all the holiday decorations were up, and invited me, Matt, and my brother Steve to join them. Don’t have to ask me twice! It was even more beautiful with all the Christmas lights and trees!
So stunning. The roaring fireplaces were my favorite. 🙂
This place is the BEST – so beautiful, welcoming, cozy, and the food is phenomenal. Super attentive staff, too. I was so pumped to be back! We all arrived for teatime on Monday – don’t mind if I do!
The main event at the Inn, though, is the dinner – it’s always rated at the top of the area restaurant lists, and for good reason! After getting all dolled up and having a little cocktail hour, we were ready to eat. Here I am with my gentlemen, rocking a pretty dress my mom got me back in September for my birthday (it’s this one from Macy’s, and I paired it with black tight and black high heeled ankle boots).
When we sat down, we were treated to some truffle popcorn – we all remembered this from the last time we came and were excited to have it again! Matt’s dad actually served truffle popcorn at Thanksgiving as a nod to our Inn stay. 🙂
I forgot to photograph the second amuse bouche (which was amazing) – but here is the third. A really good bean soup with a little cheese puff type thing (<—that’s a technical term).
The Inn provides 3 tasting menu options which all include multiple courses (small tastes of everything, though, which is good). There’s a classic option, a seasonal option, and vegetarian option. Last time I got the classics – this time I got smart and realized they didn’t mind if I created my own menu by selecting different options from all 3. Sweet!
I started with the vegetarian appetizer – a grilled endive and bosc pear salad with pomegranate vinaigrette, which was paired with a Riesling wine. Delicious!
My second course was also from the vegetarian menu – I selected the beet tartare with a golden beet carpaccio and beet sorbet. It’s surrounded with ribbons of crispy kale (amazing) and topped with a black truffle crostini and a little quail egg! How beautiful is this?! It was paired with a Vouvray wine from the Loire region of France. That was especially fun because I was in the Loire Valley last summer!
For my next course, I switched to the classics menu for the sweet and sour pan seared scallops with shishito peppers. This was sooo good. Paired with another sweet Riesling!
My last course was from the seasonal menu – a short rib of Virginia bison with local mustard greens and gremolata. Super tender! It paired with a really good French red wine.
I know this looks like a ton of food, and while it certainly wasn’t a light meal, all the plates are very small, so you don’t leave feeling uncomfortable at all! I also shared some of my plates around and stole some tastes from others. 🙂
After dinner, we received a palate cleanser – a yummy tiny vanilla and orange creamsicle. So cute!
For dessert, Matt got a mint chocolate dish that I stole some bites of – so good.
Since I had a bunch of sweet wine pairings, I was feeling more savory than sweet for dessert, though, so for myself I ended up getting the cheese plate! It’s especially fun because they bring over a huge cart, really good bread, and you get to taste whatever you want. I <3 cheese.
What an amazing night! We all slept quite well after such a feast, as you can imagine. 🙂
Because this post doesn’t have enough good food in it yet, though, here’s a little more – the breakfast the next morning at the Inn. A selection of fresh juice, yogurt, freshly made granola, and berries is included with the room rate – delicious!
I had a little of everything along with some green tea, and then ordered a scrambled egg and smoked salmon dish to get in a little more protein. This place even manages to make scrambled eggs special – how cute is this tiny copper pot?! (That’s an appetizer sized plate, for scale.)
I was so sad to check out and say goodbye – what an amazing place. Until next time, Inn at Little Washington – and a huge thank you to my parents for inviting us to join in on the fun!
Because this blog is all about balance (and because it turned into a beautiful day – finally – and hiking makes my heart happy), Matt, my brother and I headed out after breakfast to get some fresh air in our favorite – nearby Shenandoah National Park!
In May after our night at the Inn, Matt and I did this hike (called “Little Devil Stairs”) with his parents and really enjoyed it. It’s close by – only about a 15 minute drive – and Matt and I decided it would be fun to come back with my brother in tow. It was a gloomy morning, but by the time we started hiking the skies cleared and the sun came out to play. Hooray – we hadn’t seen it in quite awhile!
It felt amazing to get some fresh air after being cooped up inside for the better part of the past week thanks to lots of rain!
The first two miles of this hike are all uphill, and you criss-cross over the stream/falls, which makes for lots of fun scrambling.
When we did this hike in May, the water level of the streams was relatively low – this time, not so much! It made crossing the streams a little more challenging/adventurous – which I of course loved. 🙂 I did manage to dunk both my feet in the water at various points on the hike, though – oops!
After the 2 mile hike up the stream, you end up doing the last 3.5 miles down a fire road – which, while less interesting, is still quite pretty and wooded. 🙂
Plus, you get some lovely views! The clouds resting over the mountains in the distance actually looked like snow – but considering it was 60 degrees out, we knew better. 🙂
5.5 miles and about 4 hours later, we arrived back at the car. Tired but happy. 🙂
What a fun adventure!
I hope you’re all enjoying a work-free week – anyone else get in a good hike or some good food lately? Do share!