New Tastes, Old Building
For over two decades, a historic (and some say haunted) old house on Main Street in Blowing Rock was home to the Mexican restaurant Tijuana Fats. Last year, Powell and Mary Kelly Glidewell opened a new eatery in the same building, one that has become a popular spot for both locals and visitors.
This week, the Glidewells attempt something daring: a complete overhaul of their menu at Glidewell's Restaurant. Working with Chef Skipper Clyburn, the owners of the restaurant have decided the time was right to introduce a completely new menu to their diners.
"We'll still have some of the more popular dishes pop up as daily specials, but we've changed the entire menu," said Powell Glidewell.
Clyburn and sous chefs Geoff Jones and Chris Escott prepared all of the new entrees and appetizers for a test run at the restaurant this past Monday evening. All of the "test" diners were thrilled with the new selections. A common comment was how novel it was to have different sauces and side dishes with every entree on the menu.
Chef Clyburn describes the new selection as "new American cuisine with an emphasis on regional suppliers."
Glidewell added that he and Clyburn wanted to create a menu where every dish would feature flavors that would stand out, and where nothing could be described as "tasting like chicken."
The new menu includes "all day dining" dishes that can be ordered at any time, and "evening dining" dishes that are served from 5 to 9 p.m.
New soup selections include roasted red pepper, tomato basil bisque; truffled English pea and ham soup; and a soup du jour.
Customers will be able to order soup and half a sandwich and choose from a fried green tomato B.L.T., a roasted chicken salad sandwich (with dried cranberries, toasted pecans on a croissant), or the pulled pork barbecue (with marinated cabbage, Granny Smith apples and vinegar sauce). There is also a certified Angus hamburger for those who enjoy an all-American lunch.
"All day" entrees include free-form chicken lasagna, sauteed black mussels (with papperdelle pasta, tomato fondue and Parmesan), a gathered greens salad (with roasted chicken tenderloins, goat cheese crumbles and marinated Bermuda onions), and a grilled beef tenderloin (with sweet onion confit, shoestring potatoes and natural jus).
Evening dining options include appetizers, such as sauteed black mussels (with roasted garlic broth, crostini and mini ratatouille, roasted bob white quail (with black-eye pea relish and saffron onion marmalade), truffled English pea soup (with blue crab fritter and Prosciutto di Parma), rosemary skewered beef kabob (with sweet onion fennel salad and shaved regianno Parmigiana), and a tangle of greens featuring crispy calamari and roasted red pepper vinaigrette.
Dinner entree choices include pan-basted duck breast (with sweet potato hash and orange segment maceration), braised Colorado lamb shank (with gorgonzola polenta, winter root veggies and red onion jam), sauteed grouper (with Roma tomato confit, green lentils and pickled bell peppers), seared scallops (with stone-ground grits, wilted spinach and apple-wood smoked bacon), grilled beef tenderloin (with hash brown pillow and foraged wild mushrooms) and sauteed Coho salmon (with free-form lasagna, fresh mozzarella and tomato fondue).
Dinner entree prices range from $17 to $22, while lunch options range from $4 for a cup of soup to $15 for the grilled beef tenderloin.
Glidewell's Restaurant is located on Main St. in downtown Blowing Rock across from St. Mary of the Hills. For more information, call (828) 295-9683.
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