If a group of women meet for lunch, does that make them “ladies who lunch”?
Ladies who lunch are (according to Wikipedia) “slim, well-off, old-money, well-dressed women who meet for lunch socially, normally during the working week. Typically, the women involved are married and non-working. Normally the lunch is in a restaurant, perhaps in a department store during shopping. Sometimes there is the pretext of raising money for charity.”
And then there’s Stephen Sondheim’s hard-hitting “Ladies Who Lunch” from the Broadway show “Company“Â sung here by iconic star of the show,Â Elaine Stritch. If you have trouble viewing the video below, click here.
But since I’m not particularly slim, well-off (new money OR old) and rarely dress well, I really should be categorized as a “Dame who Dines“.
Three of us Dames (hope sis and my friend don’t mind the moniker) dined at Season’s at Highland Lake Inn a week or so ago. It did feel a little like ladies lunching because of the setting: Season’s enclosed porch, which features large wall-to-wall pane windows. Beautifully set tables are draped in heavy, white wipeable material and nicely spaced for a bit of privacy.
Views from this dining area are just beautiful no matter what the season. Spring flowers were blooming in many plots scattered throughout the lawn area. But, even in winter, it’s lovely. Some might not think it lovely, but this past winter diners were asked to stay a little longer, even if they were done with their meal, giving a mama bear and her cubs plenty of time to wander past the front door.
Dame “M” was in a seafood kind of mood, ordering the Seaside Lavash Pizza ($12). Thin flat bread covered with “Pomodoro (tomato) Sauce” topped with sauteed shrimp, artichokes, spinach, Goat,Â MonterreyÂ jack and Asiago cheeses, olives and garlic.
When the pizza first arrived, both Dame M and I did a double take. Was that shrimp cooked? Still looking pretty translucent, it was sauteed just enough to cook it through.
On an interesting “trend note”, this is the second time I’ve seen “Lavash” used on a menu recently. The first was during the WNC Chefs Challenge between Chef Mauricio Abreu (Chef Moâ€™s Restaurant & Bar) and Chef Josh Monroe (Chefâ€™s Table), when Lavash (as bread sticks) were served with a Fettuccini Chicken Marsala.
Dame “S” fancied the Curried Chicken Salad ($10). Baby spinach, toasted pecans, grapes, dried cherries, apples julienned and sauteed curried chicken strips were tossed in a cider-curry dressing.
Mmm, Mmm, Mmm. Crunchy, chewy, sweet and savory. Every bite scrumptious as textures and flavors jockeyed for position.
And Dame “L” (that’s me) aÂ consummateÂ sucker for chicken salad made with apples, nuts and otherÂ crunchyÂ items, ordered the Waldorf All Natural Chicken Salad Sandwich ($10). Season’s version included chicken (of course), celery, walnuts and apples and was served on toasted Brioche with Romaine lettuce. Sandwiches come with choice of side salad du jour, french fries, or mixed green salad. The robust vinaigrette on the side was more than enough for my needs.
My palate got a little shock at first bite, when the mustard-based condiment spread on the Brioche made itself known. Mayo is expected, but this little twist energized the sandwich. Note 8/20/2011: Chef Fassbender has changed the spread on this sandwich, so give it a try.
The other Dames were kind enough to share their desserts with me since I was way too full to order one for myself. Both were absolutely delicious.
Pictured below are the Fruit Tart ($6) and Creme Brulee ($5) dessert plates. The Fruit Tart was custard-filled, topped with a lovely, creamyÂ sauce and beautiful fresh fruit.
A word of warning about the Creme Brulee: if you haven’t had this dish at Season’s, you should know it’s good, but served in a very small ramekin. Note 8/20/2011: After reading this article, Season’s responded very favorably, including increasing the size of their Creme Brulee. Nice!
Dame M and I each had a glass of wine. Mine was the house White Zinfandel and hers was a red, if memory serves. Something many don’t know is that Season’s maintains a wine room stocked with well over 1,000 bottles. If you’re in the mood for an everyday wine or something special, they have it.
No notes were taken during this meal – we were too busy having a good time.
Season’s offers many special holiday meals and Sunday Brunch Buffets.
And always remember – There is Nothin Like a Dame!
Season’s at Highland Lake Inn
86 Lily Pad Lane
Flat Rock, NC 28731