Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Savoring Vino Venue


If you don't know about Vino Venue, I have a question for you....where have you been my friend?
This unique spot in the Dunwoody neighborhood is truly an impressive destination for food and wine lovers. Vino Venue is a wine bar/retail store, restaurant, and event venue. They are the home of the Atlanta Wine School and offer everything from wine fundamental classes, to wine/food pairing, to wine certifications.
I have been to Vino Venue a few times in the past, but only  experienced a small taste of what they have to offer. My lovely and talented friend Melissa Pelkey Hass put together quite the gathering for our blogger group recently at Vino Venue. We were invited for a tasting of the new restaurant menu from Executive Chef Patric Good and Sous Chef Will Hunt.



Vino Venue has traditionally served small plates, but with the recent remodel of their restaurant kitchen, they have created a varied and expansive menu including heartier dishes. Lucky us, for sure!
At our tasting, Chefs Patric and Will gave us a personal "tour" of the delicious, new menu - while Manager/Partner Rob Van Leer poured some specially-selected wines. We started with a refreshing glass of bubbly to enjoy with Cajun spiced pork rinds and these perfectly crispy Beer Battered Green Beans with Roasted Garlic Aioli. Did you know that a sparkling wine/champagne pair well with salty, fried foods?


Ok, next up, some amazing appetizers. I don't know about you, but a few appetizers or tapas can make a very happy meal for me. Really enjoyed these three, including the Ducktrap River Smoked Salmon Rillettes {cue the cute 'lil canning jar} with Sourdough; Wild Mushroom Flat Bread with Truffle Creme Fraiche and Pea Shoots; and Stuffed Roasted Piquillo Peppers with Adobo Chicken, Cotija, and Cilantro Cream. Please don't ask me to choose a favorite small plate. Way too hard to decide. And then this glorious mess showed up.....


Faux Poutine. Yep. I'm not sure why they call it "faux"....because this is the realest real, crazy-good, bowl of sexy poutine with steak fries, pulled beef short rib, demi-glace, and Irish cheddar.
Hands-down, this is indulgent. But if you share it with a couple of other hungry friends, maybe you can still fit into your work out gear.
This is something I would never make at home, so what a treat to try it at Vino Venue. No guilt.

An Introduction Interlude:



The chefs: Sous Chef William Hunt and Exec Chef Patric Good. We bombarded them with questions, video-taking, hash tags and constant photo snaps all night. God bless them. All the while they made us laugh while serving and introducing the dishes. 
Big thanks. 


Eventually, we got to meet the talented cooks Demetrius and Julius who were cranking up the kitchen all night and keeping things moving and flowing with incredible finesse. Thanks guys!


Here's Manager/Partner Rob Van Leer, discussing the finer points of a Pinot Noir from Monterey's Metz Road Vineyard. Rob's passion for wine and food comes across so clearly - it is easy to see he loves to educate others about wine.


This sweet lady is Stephanie Love. Look at that smile. She's a wine lover and busy serving up this Southern Rhone Rose while sprinkling her  positive vibes and fairy dust all over Vino Venue. 



We sampled both the Summer Salad with Mixed Greens, Corn, Field Peas, Heirloom Tomatoes, Pecan Wood Bacon, and Buttermilk Dressing {above} and the Heirloom Tomato and Burrata Salad {below}. You can't ever go wrong with some bacon and burrata. Yum!


Right now, you've got to be thinking....did you really eat all this food? It was a lot to sample. My strategy....only a few bites, pace myself, keep breathing.
I'm not gonna lie. I was very full when I left. But, man was it worth it to have the opportunity to experience so many menu items. 


The next savory dishes were the Burger, Ratatouille, Knife and Fork Egg Sandwich. I'm afraid my photo here doesn't do this guy justice. The Vino Venue Burger was super tasty with Wagyu Beef, Comeback Sauce, Lettuce, Tomato, Onion, and Pickles. If you know me...you know I'm checking out the bun! So many restaurants don't take that extra effort to give you a good burger bun. This one gets a definite thumbs-up.
Chef Patric mentioned that they put a burger on the menu because they needed "man food" - I beg to differ. 
A good, juicy burger is seriously appreciated by ladies too!
Check out the Ratatouille below...a big bowl of comfort with the addition of pappardelle pasta, arugula pesto, and ricotta.



This Fried Egg Sandwich was awesome. It was huge and the knife made for a fun presentation. And yes, you do need the knife. This was a favorite of our blogger group....I think everyone was eyeballing each other for these leftovers! How can you go wrong with eggs, pimento cheese, bacon, tomato jam, Bibb lettuce, and onion on grilled sourdough? You just can't. 


Moving on to tasty Trout with Succotash and the impressive Grilled Rib Eye with Horseradish Mashed Potatoes, Asparagus, and Maitre d' Butter. Going out on a high note for sure. Succulent.
Chef Patric says "good food should make you happy". 
Well, we were one darn happy group.


We hit all the highlights of the dessert menu including Lavender Creme Brulee, Dark Chocolate Pot de Creme, Key Lime Pie, and Tres Leches Cake. My favorite was the Key Lime Pie. I am a sucker for it and this one with whipped mascarpone and a coconut graham crust was the perfect way to end the evening.


What a fantastic evening at Vino Venue with my fellow Atlanta food bloggers! Great to spend time with Melissa, Nikka, Candyce, Rochelle, and Toby....sharing our passion for food and wine.
Thank you to Chef Patric Good, Chef Will Hunt, manager Rob Van Leer and all the crew at Vino Venue. 
Thank you Melissa for making magic happen.

Some final thoughts....


Spend some time at Vino Venue and "Drink....Dine....Discover"

Vino Venue

4478 Chamblee Dunwoody Road
Dunwoody, GA 30338
Georgetown Shopping Center
Phone: 770-668-0435

Facebook


WINE BAR & RETAIL:
Monday through Friday
10:00am - Close
Saturday
12:00PM - Close


RESTAURANT: 

Monday through Friday
AFTERNOON BITES
2:00 - 5:00pm
DINNER NIGHTLY
5:00pm - Close
FULL MENU Saturday
12:00pm – Close



{Happily Edible After *FUN FACT*}
This blog post was written while jamming to....
  • Drake - Passionfruit
  • Katy Perry - Bon Appetit
  • J Balvin - Mi Gente
  • Calvin Harris featuring Pharrell Williams - Feels
  • Thomas Rhett - Craving You


No comments:

Post a Comment