Combine the seasonal tourism and convention lull we see here every summer with poor economic news overall, and it's no surprise that more and more upscale restaurants are running deals to lure in local diners.
Now it looks as though hard times might be holding sway over swanky wine dinners as well. Consider this menu for the four-course (plus hors d'oeuvres) "Old World Winery Dinner" that La Petit Grocery chef Justin Devillier (pictured) will put on this Wednesday, Aug. 12:
Smoked Line Caught Sockeye Salmon --crème fraiche, dill, salmon roe, chive blini
Steak Tartar --smoked aioli, red wine mustard, quail egg
Chicken Rillette -- apricot jam, chicken cracklin'
2007 White Night Rose
Chilled Roasted Beets -- spiced pecans, arugula, smoked bacon, goat cheese
2008 Bon Temps LeBlanc
Second Course -- Kurobuta Pork Belly Mezzaluna
grilled gulf shrimp, fresh jalepeño, preserved lemon
2008 Tweek Block
Third Course -- Roasted Duck Breast
carrot ginger agnolotti, confit garlic, edamame
2005 Pinot Noir
Fourth Course -- Old Fashioned Chocolate Pudding
bourbon vanilla bean cream
The cost. . .$47 per person. That doesn't include tax and tip which would bring you to about $60 a person -- but it still seems like a substantial departure from the norm for wine dinners at restaurants of similar caliber. It's normal to see such repasts sold for $75, $85 or $100 a head.
Everything's relative, but provided you're in a position to drop this kind of money for dinner, this one looks like a steal.