Through August 27, Deer Valley Grocery-Cafe at Deer Valley Resort is hosting a series of specially curated culinary experiences this summer called Summer Dinners on the Deck. Delightful themed dinners are served every Friday and Saturday evening on the deck at Deer Valley Grocery-Cafe, from 6 to 9 p.m.
This past weekend, my wife and I enjoyed a wonderful deck dinner at Deer Valley Grocery-Cafe where the theme was “Toast to New England” featuring the sort of fare you’d be likely to find from Connecticut to Maine. The deck at Deer Valley Grocery-Cafe is located lakeside in Deer Valley Plaza. It’s a quiet, leisurely way to enjoy excellent Deer Valley Resort cuisine with kayakers and paddle boats occasionally floating past the dining deck.
Prices for Dinners on the Deck range from $48 per person to $72, depending on the theme and cuisine. Wine, beer and other beverages are also available for an additional charge and there are suggested drink pairings available for each deck dinner, such as icy cold Sam Adams beer with the Toast to New England dinner.
The Toast to New England dinner kicked off with New England style clam chowder (pronounced chowdah, of course). It was a wonderfully creamy chowder with plentiful clams, potato, celery, scallions, bacon, leeks and fluffy, pillow-like croutons made from scratch. Definitely a taste of New England!
During Dinners on the Deck, guests are treated to live music from local artists with tunes ranging on our visit from The Beatles to Nirvana. There is also a really good selection of wine and beer to enjoy during dinner, and we opted to share a bottle of Whispering Angel Rosé from Château d’Esclans, a magical wine estate located in the heart of Provence, France. Whispering Angel was a slam-dunk for sipping alongside the New England-inspired fare we enjoyed.
The highlight of the evening were scrumptious lobster (lobstah) rolls. These were Connecticut-style lobster rolls, which differ from the Maine version in that they are served warm with butter and don’t contain mayo – hold the mayo, bring on the butter! Maine lobster rolls are more salad-like, typically tossed with mayonnaise, celery and tarragon, and I much prefer Connecticut-style rolls. These were authentic, East-Coast-style frankfurter type rolls grilled with butter and each one stuffed with a generous portion of tender, juicy sweet lobster. There are few things on the planet that I enjoy eating more than lobster rolls, and Deer Valley’s are outstanding.
I think of comfort food when I think of New England fare, and our lobster rolls came with a hearty serving of homemade beans and franks with bacon (you can never have too much bacon) – a perfect accompaniment.
The Toast to New England dinner at Deer Valley Grocery-Cafe wound up with a decadent fluffernutter (fluffa nuttah) desert that was outrageously delicious – by far the best fluffernutter I’ve ever tasted. Since my wife is gluten-free, I enjoyed hers too!
You still have some time this summer to visit Deer Valley Grocery-Cafe and indulge in the remaining Dinners on the Deck events. Upcoming dinners include Lakeside Paella, Taste of Italy, Live Fire Cedar Plank King Salmon, Family Cookout, Jambalaya, Crab Boil, Sushi and Sake, and an End of Summer Luau to close out the summer season. Reservations are not required and seating is first come, first served. For questions please call 435-615-2400.
In addition to Dinner on the Deck, Deer Valley also hosts Mountaintop Brews & Tunes each Saturday from noon to 3:30 p.m. through August 27th. You’ll ride up Sterling Express chairlift to enjoy a variety of craft brews, live entertainment, take-away fare and stunning mountaintop views atop Deer Valley’s Bald Mountain at Snowshoe Tommy’s. Upcoming beer sponsors include Bohemian Brewery, Kiitos Brewing, ROHA, and Shades Brewing. A lift ticket is required to ride the Sterling Express chairlift to access each event.
Photos by Ted Scheffler
Culinary quote of the week: “Most local New England cooks have two ideas about what to do with food. They either fry it, or else they make chowder out of it.” – Louise Dickinson Rich
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Originally trained as an anthropologist, Ted Scheffler is a seasoned food, wine & travel writer based in Utah. He loves cooking, skiing, and spends an inordinate amount of time tending to his ever-growing herd of guitars and amplifiers.
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