Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Review: Starker's Restaurant Birthday Dinner

"Though it seems like just 'another day'
to us it's special - a special day!
A beautiful day has begun,
so terribly sorry it means you're 51."


This is what I woke up to yesterday morning - my birthday morning - as it was written on colored index cards and posted on our bathroom mirror, just waiting to be discovered after I had woken up and Hubby had long gone off to work...a beautiful (???) poem composed by my beloved Hubby.

He apparently later came to the belated conclusion that it was somewhat of a slam - so he hastily texted me a revised last line of the poem while he was at work...the NEW version of my custom-designed birthday poem said, "You're too CUTE to be 51."

Ha. I like that one better...for obvious reasons.

And so began my birthday day...a day filled with errands and sunshine and birthday messages and phone calls and texts and Facebook greetings...making me feel very special, indeed. Even if I was turning 51, and my Hubby was sorry about it. Hee.

For a special birthday dinner, Hubby whisked me off down to the Country Club Plaza, where we dined at Starker's Restaurant, a beloved Kansas City institution since 1972.

There, on our table, were some beautiful birthday flowers - although they might as well have been "suck-up" flowers, after the Slam Poem from the morning:

Beautiful, spring-like flowers...and in a vase low enough that Hubby and I could still see each other and converse...he did good.

Our pre-dinner drinks consisted of my usual, a chocolate martini, which was outstanding - smooth, creamy and perfect - and a "Libido Lifter" for Hubby...he liked the name, really, and could care less what was in it. Although he declared later that it was pretty good.

After we had placed our order, we were surprised with a complimentary amuse bouche from the chef - a "shot" of warm pea soup with a hint of mint:

I'll admit...when the waiter first set this down in front of me...I was skeptical. Pea soup? Really? With mint? And it's warm? However...I took one sip...

...and I died. Nom. Nom. Nom. It was SOOOOOOO freakin' delicious! Who knew??!!

For an appetizer, we chose the Fried Green Tomatoes...which were lightly dusted in corn meal, and came topped with some succulent Gulf shrimp and a spicy remoulade:

This was amazing...just the right crispiness, and just the right amount of garnish with the shrimp and sauce. I seriously could have made a meal off this by fact, Hubby and I agreed that THESE fried green tomatoes have now spoiled us for any that we eat in the future - and we are HUGE fans of fried green tomatoes!

For our salad course, we chose the baby greens salad with Maytag Blue Cheese, Spiced Walnuts, Granny Smith Apples and a Pommery Mustard Vinaigrette:

Now. I have to admit - I have a serious love affair with blue cheese. However - the blue cheese on this salad was excessively STRONG. Almost overpowering. And I don't know that I've ever felt that way about blue cheese before, as I can sit down and eat it straight. But this? Whew. So - I would say my salad was so-so...but...I didn't sulk for TOO long, as they brought out the soup:

This is the "famous" Bookbinder Soup - Starker’s Classic Soup with Steamed Fish in a Rich Sherry Broth. If you go to Starker's, you HAVE to get this soup. Slurp. It was yummy.

For our entrees, I chose the Filet Oscar - a Grilled Filet Mignon with King Crab Meat, Asparagus, Whipped Potatoes and Sauce BĂ©arnaise:

Holy Carnivore, Batman - this was good. The filet was seasoned to perfection, while the potatoes were so creamy and yummy. When I start humming while I'm eating, then you KNOW it's delish.

Hubby chose the Almond Crusted Rainbow Trout with Minnesota Wild Rice, Haricot Verts, Oyster Mushrooms and Lemon Garlic Brown Butter:

He loved it. He offered me a bite, but I didn't want to interrupt the perfection of my filet, so I declined.

As if we hadn't eaten enough at this point, we decided that we MUST have dessert. My stomach was trying to go into rebellion mode at this point - "TOO MUCH FOOD!!! STOP!!! ENOUGH!!!" - but I ignored it. How can one pass up dessert on one's birthday??!!

Hubby chose the Chocolate Pecan Pie with vanilla ice cream:

Of course, I HAD to sample this, and I agreed with was fabulous. Not too sweet - and not too heavy - with just the right hint of chocolate flavor.

I chose the Creole Beignets with White Chocolate and a hint of Dark Chocolate Ganache:

...and I chose wrong. Bleh. These were dry dough balls, smothered in powdered sugar, which made them even drier...and there was NOT ENOUGH CHOCOLATE SAUCE. (I'm shouting, as if the pastry chef at Starker's will HEAR ME and correct this catastrophe in the future.)

However, I liked my birthday candle.

Wait. Not that I ATE it - but I liked the decorative touch. Just wanted to clarify that.

All-in-all, a very good dinner. Not perfection - the blue cheese and the dry dough balls kept this meal from being perfect - but pretty darn close.

Flowers...good food...and a wonderful Hubby who spoils me rotten, even when he slams me in poetry.




The Boss Lady said...

Happy Birthday! I just wanted to drop you a line to let you know that you have inspired me to start my own blog. I have followed your reviews on Cruise Critic and made it to your blog from there. Blogging is something that I had talked about doing for a long while but reading yours finally made me get to moving!

Lois--Huckleberry Lady said...

Happy Belated Birthday. Love the old pics!!! Too bad you didn't choose the pecan pie too!!! LOVE pecan pie!!!! I liked the candle too on the plate!!!
Have a great year!!


Sherri O said...

Hey, Boss Lady - that is WONDERFUL! I've added your blog to my reading list - can't wait to follow along! :)

Lois - thank you! And yes, that pecan pie was to die for. It was so good that Hubby didn't even share it with me, other than the one measly bite he let me have...gah!

NYCStylelittleCannoli said...

What a lovely dinner! Happy Belated Birthday!! Now I am hungry!!