Competitive eaters? Bring ’em on!

…and then we ran out of salmon

Restaurant life in the Gorge is a trip. At very weird speeds. On Tuesday, it can be dead. On Wednesday, off the charts. Such is life in a small town with a variable population of locals, sometime locals and tourists.

We don’t make it any easier on ourselves by demanding excellence and freshness. And so we play chicken with our guest count. We try not to buy more fresh fish, fruits, vegetables and meat than we think we will sell over any two day period, hoping against hope that we have looked at the crystal ball and chosen well, grasshopper.

Saturday, Carnac the Magnificent (aka Chef Kathy) guessed wrong, and first we ran out of lamb, then scallops, and finally, salmon. With two hours of service to go.

So we share our frustration with you (where did you all come from?) only to add this: we are ready for you this weekend. You can show up with six champion competitive eaters, and we’ll still have enough to get us straight through to 10 pm both Friday and Saturday. Just TRY and make us run out of food. We double dare ya.

And here’s what we’ll have plenty of

We are getting so many compliments on the salmon these days. While part of that is due to our skill in the kitchen, most of the credit goes to the salmon, which is just darn delicious right now. Steve Gates of Big Winds sent us a great note this week: “I have NEVER had a better salmon dinner (and I have eaten a LOT of salmon in the past 40 years!) than the one I had Saturday night at Nora’s. It was absolutely fantastic.”

We’re bringing in whole, beautiful Oregon coast troll-caught kings, starting them in brown butter, and then finishing them in the oven with a saffron broth, snap peas, marble potatoes, and then dressing them up with green garlic aioli and a little salad of pea shoots and arugula.

New steak joins the line-up

The price of beef, what with fuel costs and supply issues, has really made it a problem for us to offer you a nice steak at a price that leaves money in your wallet for wine and dessert. Our small-plate six-ounce ribeye was up to $18.

So starting tonight, we’re going to a nice 8-ounce flat iron steak from Mountain Shadow, served ranchero style with roasted potatoes and tomatoes, grilled poblano chilies, all napped in a rich beef jus, and topped with ancho chili Vidalia onion rings, for a mere $19.

And the steak joins the menu with:

  • Mountain Shadow lamb shoulder ragu on Rainbow’s perfect pappardelle pasta, the season’s last morel mushrooms, and grana cheese
  • Caribbean-spiced rubbed braised pork shank, braised cabbage, cumin rice

Or make a meal with our small plates:

  • Fresh Yakima asparagus, asparagus couilis, grated hard-cooked farm egg
  • Fried calamari, salad of napa cabbage, peanuts, celery, radish and scallions, lime chili vinaigrette
  •  Salad of grated raw beets and Kiyokawa pears, chevre vinaigrette, honey spice walnuts, arugula
  • Seared scallops, black quinoa risotto with figs and kale, pear gastrique
  • Zucchini and pork belly hush puppies, maple mustard mayo

Have a great Memorial Day weekend, and come see us around Nora’s Table on Friday or Saturday. (We’re, as always, closed Sunday and Monday.)

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