S’more Please-100 Dishes To Eat In Alabama Before You Die
Tasty Tuesday for MEGabite #44 or #59 on my quest to try 100 Dishes To Eat In Alabama Before You Die.
After a dinner stop with friends at Kowaliga for MEGabite #43, the fantastic fried shrimp platter, someone got a harebrained idea that we all should have more to eat, cross off another dish on my “100 quest” and visit the nearby SpringHouse Restaurant for s’mores.
The minute that I saw the gorgeous exterior, I realized that I was not going to be having marshmallows on a stick. The building itself was grand yet cozy and reminded me of places that I have visited in Ireland or England. Made of large stones, beams and iron, every detail from the décor to the landscaping was extremely tasteful.
It was a Saturday night in the dead of an Alabama winter and although we had no reservations, the staff on the phone welcomed us with a few dining options. We were graciously seated upstairs in what is described as a bar area. It felt like you might be in a beautiful tree house with white napkins and candlelight.
Officially the s’mores were not on the menu but the staff informed us that we were able to order this dish. With four people we ordered the Dessert Platter giving us four fantastic desserts. I love how their motto is “Our desserts aren’t fancy, they’re simply great.”
- S’more. Beginning with a crisp homemade graham cracker, made from scratch marshmallows. On top of that is amazing warm chocolate lava cake with rich chocolate sauce, topped with more of the marshmallow. C’mon baby light my fire!
- Muscadine Hull Pie. Intriguing. Made with local Muscadines & Scuppernongs, baked in a perfect pastry and served with homemade ice cream. And yes, I had to google scuppernongs before I ordered. I ate this first and absolutely loved it!
- Lemon tart with homemade whip cream. Yum!
- Crème brulee made with chai and cara cara orange.
MEGastars: 5 ***** Although my graham cracker crust was tough to cut through, I absolutely LOVED this dish. In an area where many people have vacation homes and visitors flock to the great Alabama outdoors, many s’mores are most certainly being made around campfires. It seems fitting and genius to create a grown up version of this dish that seems to marry the restaurant to the area. Well done! The executive chef is said to be passionate about Southern progressive cooking and supporting local farmers. The food is served on plates and in bowls that are handcrafted by potter Tina Payne of Leeds. Everything about this visit was perfect! My expectations were exceeded. Fantastic food and a fantastic dining experience. I can’t wait to go back and visit for breakfast, lunch and dinner! Alabama food made with Alabama pride.
- Don’t let the rustic elegant casual description fool you. Gussy yourself up a bit. I had been hiking at Wind Creek State Park and felt a bit out of place. The staff couldn’t have been more gracious, professional and welcoming. If I had to guess, I would say that one of the mission statements of SpringHouse must be to create an environment where each customer feels welcome and valued. A place where upscale food is served and yet pretense does not rule. They are creating a wonderful culture.
- Do make reservations. This link will give you all of the details that you need to make your visit. SpringHouse Restaurant
- Put the Lake Martin area on your roadtrip wish list. A gorgeous area with many outdoor opportunities.
- If you are interested in architecture, yet another reason to visit. Take note of the building details. It was gorgeous, modern, clean and somehow on a Saturday night still quiet. I love that!
- Scuppernongs is actually not from Hogwarts. “… a large variety of muscadine (Vitis rotundifolia), a species of grape native to the Southern United States. It is usually a greenish or bronze color and is similar in appearance and texture to a white grape, but rounder and larger and first known as the ‘big white grape’…” Wikipedia
- Do not overlook the bar area. They have a sommelier and professional bartenders that are very friendly and loved to share their art. For example, they made their own fresh ginger simple syrup. My friends all ordered from the bar and raved about their drinks.
- This is a place where artistry meets food. With a growing list of accomplishments and accolades, Chef Rob McDaniel has made quite a name for himself. Among them, Trip Advisor’s FlipKey.com lists Springhouse as “Alabama’s best restaurant worth traveling for.” I am in agreement.
- We spent a good chunk of change but made a fun memory. So, bring your wallet and truly enjoy one of Alabama’s finest dining experiences.This MEGabites and MEGastars description is found at the bottom of each post. If you are new to my 100 Dishes in Alabama escapade, this may be helpful information. *100 Dishes to eat in Alabama before you die is a compilation of food to chow down on “Bama style”. Thanks to Tourism Alabama, www.alabama.travel my Alabama bucket list just became a little easier. I am going to have some fun while making my way like Ms. Pacman, in yet another state that I call home. You too may pick up the brochure at Alabama Tourism stops or download the alphabetical brochure that begins in Abbeville and ends in York. From the little old diner to the white cloth joint, it is an opportunity to explore and experience pride in the food from restaurateurs who are dedicated to local food with some Alabama style. From the local BBQ cook to James Beard recipients, you too will take a culinary trip across scenic and historical Alabama. From this list, I select stops based on convenience of location. They are in no particular order but I already have a few favorites. Perhaps when I finish this list, I will rank my favorite dishes.
I use a 5 MEGastar system. Not a paid food critic, just Meg, a curious traveler, with an interest in trying different foods and sharing my two cents on the experience. I try to follow my own star system so that I may be fair to the wonderful dishes on this list.
- *meh food. Just wasn’t good. Maybe the food came from a can. The place was not one that I would want to send someone to show pride in Alabama. This has happened to me a few times and it is a difficult write.
- ** passable – the food was ok and above happened but the place or vice versa
- *** good but not outstanding or unique
- **** Very tasty dish AND meets one of the definitions set forth by Alabama Foods/Tourism, of local food and/OR highlights Alabama Pride.
- ***** I actually died, went to heaven and came back when I ate the dish. OR, something is very unique, something you cannot get anywhere else.