This week my sister and I attend Taste of CHG, hosted by the Columbus Hospitality Group at Mistral. This was a blogger event centered around some of the new dishes and drinks at their local restaurants and hotels. The CHG includes some of Boston’s most well-known higher end restaurants including Mistral, Sorellina, Mooo…, Teatro, L’Andana, XV Beacon Hotel, and The Inn @ St.Botolph. Each restaurant sampled a small bite inspired by their menu, and almost all were gluten free. It was great to have the chance to meet some of the chefs and restaurant managers, as well as the restaurant PR and other local bloggers and social media fanatics.
Mistral served a tuna tartare with crispy wontons in a ginger and soy sauce. This was the only thing I couldn’t eat.
The newest member of the CHG family is La Nina, a company specializing in Authentic Mexican food. The tortilla chips served were truly authentic. These chips are not your ordinary grocery buy or restaurant-style-bulk-prepared, the chips were served freshly fried for the event. It was easy to tell the ingredients were real, no preservatives, additives, unnecessary salt or oil, just corn. The chips were topped with a spicy salsa. These chips are being served at some local restaurants, but are not yet available for retail.
The Chef from Moo0…. attended, and I spoke with her briefly about the gluten free options at her restaurant. Luckily, this steakhouse serves an almost entire gluten free menu by default. She said they do not get too many requests for gluten free meals but when they do they can accommodate, no problemo! Tonight she was serving Beef Sirloin Sliders with moo sauce and caramelized onions, without the roll and sauce. The meat was soft and tender, and just melted in my mouth. I’ve only been to Capital Grille [a few times] and Flemings, but after tonight I will definitely be a future customer at Mooo.
Sorellina sampled a Chilled Pea Soup with lemon ricotta creama and chive blossoms. I personally was not a pea soup fan before tonight, but this soup was just bursting with flavor and turned me into one. I loved the whole peas on the bottom and there was just a little cream, which allowed for this dish to stay refreshing and light.
L’Andana, which is actually located in Burlington, served Swordfish Kebabs with wood-roasted peppers, onions, and cured tomatoes. I love kebabs, I love eating my veggies this way, and I loved the idea of using swordfish as the protein. I like this variation of the classic dish. It was simple yet flavor at the same time.
I saved the best dish for last. This was by far my most favorite dish of the night. Teatro is the only restaurant that was featured this evening that I have eaten at before (You can read my review here). Teatro offered us a fig and prosciutto sausage in a spicy tomato brodo served with a shishito pepper. The sausage was spicy and flavorful and I really liked the tomato brodo. I loved the spices and I also loved that it was not too spicy, I even ate the pepper!
First I tried “Spring Thyme,” made with Tito’s handmade vodka, rhubarb, thyme, lime, and soda for a refreshing but not-too-sweet cocktail. This was definitely my favorite of the two drinks. I was a little nervous the rhubarb would be too sweet for me, but that was not the case at all.I loved slightly pungent, savory, clove-like taste the thyme added to the drink.
The second custom designed drink of the night was called “The Races,” made with George Dickel Rye Whiskey, mint, lemon, and prosecco. I know what you are thinking – unfortunately Whiskey is not gluten free so I did not try it, and my sister said it was to strong so I wouldn’t have liked it anyways. That makes me feel better. The prosecco gave it a little fizz that I liked, but there was not enough to hide the Whiskey taste. If this drink had a little more prosecco and a little less whiskey I think I would have liked it.
Just when you think it’s over, dessert was served. Mistral makes its own homemade ice cream and sorbet in house. I tried the Ginger Maple and Vanilla Ice Cream (cones are not gluten free). Both were rich but not overly sweet. I did not get a chance to try the sorbet but it sure did look good.