The weekend right before before Hurricane Sandy hit, my husband and I took a trip up to Mohegan Sun with two other couples to celebrate a few big birthdays (ahem, me included), and a big anniversary (my hubby and I just celebrated our 25th anniversary!). Meatloaf was playing (now I’m really showing my age) and the six of us wanted to see him again – we had seen him in concert at Mohegan Sun nearly ten years ago.
For those of you who’ve never heard of Mohegan Sun, it’s an all-in-one destination in Connecticut that combines entertainment, gourmet dining, premier shopping, a casino, and luxury hotel all under one roof.
Although we’ve been to Mohegan Sun a few times over the years, we’ve never actually eaten at any of the nicer restaurants, which is a true shame as there are a lot of good places to eat there, including Bobby Flay’s Bar Americain, Todd English’s Tuscany, BALLO Italian Restaurant and Social Club and Michael Jordan’s Steak House. This time around since it was a special occasion, we decided to treat ourselves to a nice dinner at Bobby Flay’s Bar Americain.
The best part of eating with a group of good friends is that they don’t mind sharing. I love it when everyone orders something different and we all get a taste – it’s so much more fun and it gives me a better idea of all the menu offerings.
As a foodie, I love good food and I love eating out. I rarely eat out, so when I do, it is a real treat, and while I try to choose some of the healthier options on the menu, ultimately, I usually make my menu selections based on what pops out at me (usually something I would not typically make at home) while trying not to go overboard. After all, going out is a special occasion, and this particular evening was a a time of celebration with some really good friends..
So, let me preface the following by saying that these are not necessarily the healthiest options. In fact, some of these dishes were down right decadent. You’ve been warned…
To start our dinner off, we shared a few appetizers (I think we also had the Red Pepper Crab Cake, but it must have been devoured before I could snap a picture).
Gala Apple Salad, Blue Cheese, Walnuts, Spinach with Pomegranate Dressing
Gulf Shrimp & Grits
For dinner, we all ordered something different. I had the Fulton Fish Market Cioppino.
My friend Nancy had the Cedar Planked Pacific Salmon.
Another friend ordered the Mahi Mahi, Florida Style.
For the side dishes, we shared the Sweet Potato Gratin and Cauliflower & Goat Cheese Gratin
and the Asparagus, with Green Peppercorn Vinaigrette
And for the grand finale, we indulged ourselves with a tasting of three desserts.
Mocha Mascarpone Eclair Rum Espresso Sauce
Blueberry Lemon Crepes
Deep Dish Chocolate Cream Pie
After our bellies were full, we were off to see the Meatloaf concert. Meatloaf put on a great performance – I can’t believe Meatloaf is 65! Although my hubby was hoping to play a little Black Jack, the rest of us were ready to head home – maybe next time. I’d love to try Todd English’s Tuscany restaurant next time.
Needless to say, we had an amazing time with our friends that evening! There’s nothing better than celebrating some special moments with good friends.
Now, you didn’t think I’d leave you without a recipe did you? Bar Americain graciously provided this recipe for their Chopped Apple Salad which would be perfect for the holidays. I know I can’t wait to try it. It must have been good because I didn’t even get a taste that night ;).
- 4 apples, such as Granny Smith, Gala or Fuji, cored and cut into ½ inch dice
- 2 ounces baby spinach
- 2 large heads of Belgian endive, thinly sliced crosswise
- 1½ cups coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted
- 2 cups blue cheese such as Maytag, crumbled
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 3 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 heaping tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon honey, or more to taste
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- ⅔ cup extra virgin olive oil
- Combine the apples, spinach, endive, walnuts and blue cheese in a large bowl.
- Make Pomegranate Vinaigrette by whisking together pomegranate molasses, vinegar, mustard and honey in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until emulsified.
- Add the vinaigrette to the salad and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Disclosure: Mohegan Sun provided us with a discount at Bar Americain which was very much appreciated.