|Okay, I lied: we planned our trip months ago|
|A mountain! With clouds/fog on top! And there were 234 more like this.|
I said to myself, "I cannot come this far up the mountain and not see Jimmy."
Only, I really didn't say it to myself. I said it aloud and we pulled a U to head to Crippen's County Inn and Restaurant.
OUR PLAN: get a drink at the bar, act fancy for 45 minutes and then drive 90 minutes home.
WHAT HAPPENED: dinner, drinks, dessert, a tour of the restaurant AND the kitchen and lively conversation with Jimmy, his wife Carolyn, his stepdaughter and granddaughter and then drove home 3 hours later.
If you're ever in the area and you're in the mood, expect an experience at Crippen's. It was singularly one the most memorable, fantastic dinners I've had in a long time.
Via Crippen's website:
Young, up and coming, Chef Stan Chamberlain shares his passion for fresh, North Carolina agriculture showcasing produce from the mountains, coastal seafood, NC farm raised beef, pork & fowl cooked creatively simple. Genuinely friendly, knowledgeable staff in crisp, black and white uniforms serve you and your guests discreetly. Weekend live music in the parlor. Outdoor porch and garden dining.Crippen’s makes all their bread on-site. Slices of olive loaf, sundried tomato, herbed and cheddar breads were available with fresh, whipped butter, habanero infused oil, white bean and garlic dips.
Note: Don't pig out on the bread. You'll be full.
Crispy duck breast with butternut squash, baby carrots, lamb sausage
Bittersweet chocolate Infused espresso crusted beef tenderloin with Irish cream sauce, white cheddar potato au gratin, sauteed snap peas
Seared lamb with acorn squash pudding, parsnip strips
Jimmy wouldn't let us leave without trying dessert. Our seams were already bursting due to all of the bread, wine, and @#&!ing delicious food. We were told the tale of "Il Dolce"... Crippen's resident pastry chef. Jimmy spun a story of how the man makes magic. And he didn't lie. Look below:
I've forgotten what this was called, but I believe it was a stack of Granny Smith Apple meringue disks, apple gelee, Granny Smith apple foam, caramel, walnuts, crisp apple garnish
|Il Dolce and Jimmy Crippen|
Crippen’s Country Inn and Restaurant
239 Sunset Drive
Blowing Rock, NC 28605
Open Table Reservations