Sunday, May 9, 2010

St. Simon's King and Prince Resort 75th Anniversary Celebration

Legendary and inspirational sums up the 75th anniversary dinner at the King and Prince Beach and Golf Resort on St. Simons Island, Georgia. The seven course meal was designed to showcase southern coastal cuisine over the past seven decades.

Each course was paired with a wine and presented with finesse and southern charm. The crabcakes simply dissolved in my mouth, enlivened by a juicy burst of heat. The escargot, tender and moist, hid like gold nuggets deep within the pastry. The heavenly Grouper, adorned with savory cream, was a gift from the sea,while the Jambalaya popped a spicy punch. At the end of the evening, Chef Gomez demonstrated Bananas Foster preparation with fiery flare. Bliss and certainly worth the calories. Of course, I ate and drank too much, but who wouldn't?  The food was seductive and the full moon evening unforgettable.

Thank you King and Prince, especially Chef Robyn Gomez and the entire culinary staff.

7 Decades of Southern Coastal Cuisine

First Course - 1940's
Poached Salmon Louis
Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio

The Forties were a time of making do with less. In the middle of World War II, people all over the world were suffering under war rations and trying to survive. Victory gardens flourished in most backyards, and people of the coast were lucky in the astonishing array of seafood available to them.  Please enjoy Poached Salmon Louis, inspired by those long bygone gardens and the sea.

Second Course - 1950's
Mini Crabcake with Traditional Remoulade
Shrimp Cake with Chili Lime Cream
Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling

In the years after the way, everyone let out a sign of relief. Rationing was over, and it was time to party. Swanky cocktail parties were the rage, and one would think the cuisine of the coastal South was made for just such occasions. Please enjoy an hors d"oeuvre presentation of our Mini Crabcake with Traditional Remoulade and Shrimp Cake with Chili Lime Cream.

Third Course - 1960's
Escargot wrapped in Flaky, Buttery Puff Pastry
Ferrari-Carano Reserve Fume Blanc

Julia Child's The French Chef created an interest in all food French in the Sixties. Americans began to fancy themselves gourmets, creating showy, complicated food with just a touch of the exotic. In the coastal South, this trend blended well - as most trends do - with the rich diversity of seafood found just off the shore. In the spirit of this blending, please enjoy Escargot Wrapped in Flaky, Buttery Puff Pastry.

Fourth Course - 1970's
Signature Kind & Prince Oyster
Möet and Chandon Imperial Champagne

When the topic of food in the Seventies comes up, the discussion can't get far without someone mentioning fondue. A fad that has never quite died, many of our Southern specialties taste even better with melted cheese. In the spirit of fondue and all things involving melted cheese, please enjoy our signature King and Prince Oyster, served on the half shell and topped with jumbo lump crab meat, made complete with a layer of melted Gruyere.

Fifth Course
Creole Florida Black Grouper
Stag's Leap Chardonnay

Nouvelle cuisine- tiny portions of food artfully presented- made a big splash in the Eighties. While this cuisine may have always left you wanting more, it sure does make our coastal Southern specialties look precious and darlin'. Please enjoy this 'tiny portion' of our own Creole Florida Black Grouper, topped with a creamy Cajun crab and shrimp sauce on a bed of sauteed spinach.

Sixth Course - 1990's
Southern Jambalaya
Fransiscan Cabernet

The Nineties was the fusion decade, when chefs began combining a plethora of newly available international foods in innovative and exciting ways. But our local chefs were way ahead of the game, incorporating Caribbean and African flavors into our cuisine long before anyone thought to call it 'fusion'. As a perfect example of this, please enjoy our Southern Jambalaya, made with sauteed chicken, andouille sausage, onions, sweet peppers, and garlic, all stirred into moist white rice.

Seventh Course - 2000's
Chef's Demonstration of Bananas Foster
Dow's Fine Tawny Porto

This century has been a renaissance for those who enjoy the delights of table and hearth. The whole subject of food and the various ways to prepare it enjoy both a status and a popularity never before seen. Created in 1951, this New Orleans specialty spread, well, like wildfire to become an international sensation - perhaps even originating the idea of food as entertainment as realized today. Still a favorite and recognized as one of the most impressive desserts to come out of the South, please enjoy our Chef's Demonstration of Bananas Foster, presented by our own Robyn Gomez.

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