Though fall began yesterday, temperatures outside are still scorching. And like the weather, some restaurants are teasing us with their fall menus while others are squeezing out a few more weeks of summer cuisine. Regardless of what season you're partial to, these dishes will satiate summer cravings and autumnal appetites.
Circa 1886 recently unveiled their fall menu, with Chef Marc Collins putting an emphasis on well-being. "More whole grains, more flavor, less fat, less calories," Collins told us. "We start with a protein and incorporate fall flavors around that, all while keeping it low calorie." He recommends the Border Springs lamb loin, served with moonshine pear, brussels sprouts, blue potatoes, and almond milk reduction. As opposed to being candied, the moonshined pears offer a lower caloric value and fill the dish with hints of licorice and cinnamon.
For those wanting more summery flavors, head over to the Library at Vendue Inn. Chef Tim Bassett is still receiving local summer veggies by the batch, keeping them in steady rotation in his dishes. For appetizers try the mussels with saffron and fennel broth, or lamb chop with celery root puree, roasted garlic, and fresh basil. For an entree try the pink snapper, served with risotto and baby squash, straight from John's Island's Joseph Fields Farms. For the freshest of the fresh, give the restaurant a visit on Saturday. "I usually head to the farmer's market Saturday morning, grab what's good, and use it in our dishes," Bassett says.
In addition to their weekend happy hour and International Saturdays, Fish is offering dishes suitable for both seasons. If you're looking for a fall-influenced dish, Fish PR girl Angel Powell recommends the pork loin, which comes with a twice baked potato, asparagus, and a sour cherry sauce. Summer lovers can hook into the pan-seared red porgy served with lentils, sugar snap peas, corn, and curry. Fish is unveiling its fall menu in two to three weeks, so get these dishes while you can, as they may disappear soon.
Coast's head chef David Pell is also embracing the changing of the seasons with a fusion of summer and fall dishes. "We're making a steady transition to the fall dishes," Pell said. Tonight the restaurant offers a grilled swordfish with a local peach and habañero chutney, making for a delicious sweet and spicy dish.
Red Drum's Ben Berryhill is on a mission to makes sure his dishes are "local, but something different, and something fun." He's succeeds with his take on the classic Mexican dish albondagas. The dish is a Mexican meatball, made of pork, beef, veal, and chorizo, topped with a fire-roasted tomato and horseradish sauce. As far as entrées go, Berryhill puts an emphasis on local. "We grab from the local stuff first, we try and put some harmonious flavors together, then add a few bold and fun flavors." Worth checking out is the pan-seared triggerfish, snagged from Shem Creek. The fish is served with roasted garlic mashed potatoes, sauteed veggies, and lump crab meat with lemon caper butter.