I’ve been out to dinner many times as I’m sure many of you have as well. On October 12th we thought we were going out to dinner and ended up having the most amazing dining experience of our lives.
About a month ago our son and daughter-in-law (Garlon and Rupal) sent us a homework assignment. Our task was to come up with a menu of any and everything we’d like to have in a meal, not matter what the cuisine or how many courses. We just had to give them two weeks notice. Having carte blanch was almost overwhelming, because the possibilities were truly endless. At the same time, we didn’t want to go overboard. I guess I should add that we live in Michigan and Garlon and Rupal live in Indiana, which means this was shaping up to be quite a trip. After a couple weeks of deliberation this is the menu we came up with:
Grilled Oysters, Bruschetta,
Roast Pork with Port Jus and Chipotle-Glazed Apples
Easy Fried Rice
Sauvignon Blanc or Gewürztraminer
I was on pins and needles the day of the dinner partly because we had no idea where we were going. When we finally we arrived at Corndance Tavern in Mishawaka, I knew we were in for a treat. The ambience was intimate and cozy, without being stuffy. The hostess ushered us into a private dining room which immediately upped the excitement ante. The table setting was simple but elegant and my mind immediately went to recreating it.
Chad, the manager of Corndance came in to greet us as well as introduce us to our server for the evening, John. At one end of the room there was a flat screen television on the wall. Beneath it was a chalkboard with the day’s menu written on it. On the menu I noticed some familiar items; grilled oysters, and Crème Brulee, hmmmm.
I also overheard Garlon speaking to John and I was sure I heard him say, “My parents will be the only ones having the other menu”. That’s when it all came together; Corndance was preparing the menu we sent in, or at least their version of it. Nick, the chef and owner of Corndance was also the creative guru behind the Habanero Vodka.
This is the meal that was served:
Ham Hock Cupcakes
Sword of John Adams
Kid Chicken Fingers & Fries
Ali Baba Lamb Kebabs
Tallegio Crusted Sea Scallops
Roast Pork w/ Port Jus and Chipotle-Glazed Apples and a side of Easy Fried Rice & Fall Vegetables
Chocolate Molten Cake
Coffee & Doughnuts
Whiskey* Walnut* Gelato
Mango Heat (mixed drink)
Evil Czech – John the One Eye (Beer)
Sun King (Beer)
The food was the freshest I’ve ever tasted and cooked to absolute perfection. Not once did I reach for the salt or pepper because the meat and veggies couldn’t be improved upon. Fried alligator, grilled oysters, and bison bites all in one evening, how cool is that? Never have I had a pork chop that tender or one that was 14 oz. One of the other highlights was our daughter’s meal; Sword of John Adams. The presentation was the most over the top I‘ve seen. Shish Kabob on a sword, everyone’s jaw dropped. In addition to quality service, the meals at Corndance are of the highest quality in part because they use the best ingredients. They raise the bison they serve and of course have a garden to produce the freshest vegetables on the planet. Having your own brewery Evilczech www.evilczechbrewery.com, doesn’t hurt either. Typically restaurants that serve exquisite meals skimp on the portions. Not Corndance.
Originally the meal was slated to be served in the wine cellar. Due to the size of our party however the location had to be changed. We did get a chance to check it out and ask a few questions. If you’re in ever in the area of Mishawaka or Culver Indiana you should check out Corndance, you will not be disappointed.
Thank you Garlon and Rupal for your generosity and creating memories that will last a lifetime.