Tag Archives: Duck

Russell House Tavern

14 Feb

Most amazing selection of house made charcuterie

Valentine’s Day is here, and again Susan and I will acknowledge its existence, but we won’t be buying flowers or going out to dinner.  I’ve never been a big fan of Valentine’s Day as it always seemed to be more of a greeting card holiday than anything else.  Susan and I came together eleven years ago now, and when February rolled around the first time for us, she expressed the very same feelings for the 14th day of the second month of the year.  “Everyday is Valentine’s Day” she explains, and last Thursday we shared our own Valentine’s dinner at Russell House Tavern in Harvard Square.

Some plans changed at the last-minute for Susan last Thursday night so we decided to take the opportunity to meet in the Square after work for a drink and some appetizers.  I follow Russell House Tavern Executive Chef Michael Scelfo on twitter, and I’d noticed that he had been busy all week preparing some new forcemeats and charcuterie.  With tweets like this, “foie gras, fernet, & duck terrine. country-style and wrapped in bacon @russellhousetav,” Susan and I were very excited.

Everything was amazing.

I arrived at the Russell House early and stopped upstairs at the bar for a drink and some oysters.  Nick was behind the bar and in short order I had a Last Word and six oysters, from Island Creek in Duxbury.  I was introduced to the Last Word, a prohibition era cocktail that has recently made a comeback, at The Russell House and it can’t be beat.  I plan on a full post on the Last Word soon.

Susan's Ozark Heritage Pork Trio with Grits and Sauce Vinegar

Susan had the Ozark Heritage Pork Trio, and it was a tasty plate of perfection.  Served atop grits, the pork loin, belly, and shoulder were prepared in three different manners that complemented each.  My preference was the smoked shoulder, but they were all pretty amazing.  To top it off, I even scored the left-overs for lunch the next day.

Duck Confit

I was going to pick the pork trio as well, but in the interest of sharing, I chose the Crispy Long Island Duck Confit.   It came with a stew of black figs, fresh sage, roasted chestnuts, and pork belly.  The duck confit was done to perfection, falling off the bone as I dug at it with my fork.  The crispiness of the duck skin and the depth of flavor was off the chart good.

Orange Creamsicle

We finished the evening sharing a dessert, an Orange Creamsicle.  A vanilla & orange mousse, with creamy caramel and orange candy on top was the perfect finish to one of the most lovely anti-valentine’s days ever.  Service at Russell House was outstanding, as good as we’ve ever had. We were greeted downstairs by Andrew and shown to our table. Despite the place being full, Steven, our server was efficient, knowledgeable and most helpful.

Remember, Food is Love!




Wonderful Treat

20 Jan

Duck and Foie Gras Sausage in a white bean salad ... Yum!

I was wrapping up my last day at work this week today, prior to a long week end and vacation, and while monitoring twitter and I noticed Chef Michael Scelfo of The Russell House Tavern in Harvard Square posting that he was “having some fun working on a sausage consisting of duck meat, pork fat, sage, foie gras, & meletti amaro.”   Well since I had just recently spent the day butchering a rabbit and making a rabbit pate for the first time, this caught my eye and I mentioned jokingly that if the Chef need any tasters, that I would be willing to help out.

Not ten thirty minutes later, after this tweet from Chef, “slow poaching some duck/foie/meletti test links, thinking a warm, mustardy white bean salad, w/ vinegar tinged shallots & LOTS of parsley,” I was sitting at the bar in The Russell House Tavern, having been invited over by Chef Scelfo, and shortly after presented with a beautifully composed appetizer.  I cut and tasted the sausage first.  The rich flavor of the foie gras was pleasantly balanced by the duck and pork, and the slow poaching made for a luscious feeling in my mouth.  My next bite included some of the white bean salad, that included a dash of vinegar that added just the perfect amount of acid to complement the richness of the foie gras.

I finished my portion easily, talked about it with Chef Scelfo, and thanked him for the opportunity.   He mentioned that they will be run as specials in the coming days and week, so If I were you I’d head on down and get me some of these wonderful treats.   I know I’ll be back for them soon!

Remember, Food is Love