Sunday, December 1, 2013

Winter Weekend: An Island Escape

 Happy Monday, all. How was the weekend? Did you shop? Decorate?

As is our tradition for the weekend after Thanksgiving, we hopped a ferry and put off the holiday hustle and bustle for a couple days. A weekend on Whidbey Island, enjoying the view from our cozy room at the Inn at Langley, proved the perfect escape.

"Black Friday" takes on a different pace when you wander the streets of the small island town of Langley, taking time to page through a book or two or admire the holiday decorations.

For a taste of the island, Chef Matt Costello's 12 course meal draws inspiration from Whidbey's agricultural community and local artisans. From Dungeness crab harvested just off the Inn's decks to an edible "winter scene" in a glass ornament made by local glass artists and filled with flavors from the island, this is an truly unforgettable feast unlike any meal we've had around the world.

Come Sunday, there's time for one last walk on the beach or on the bluffs over looking the Puget Sound at Ebey's Landing.

We catch a ferry and return to the city, rested, restored and ready to take on the holidays.

What's your favorite place to hide away and slow down the season a bit?


  1. what a lovely getaway. 12 courses! what fun. arizona is my getaway for sure, and i'm just back. now i am ready for the baking and twinkly lights to begin this season of wonder and hope.

    love to you.


  2. Wow. A meal unlike any other you have had around the world? Now THAT is saying something! I admit I was straining to try and read the rest of the menu. :) So happy for you both. This weekend seems to be the best of what the season can be...
    Gros Bisous.

    1. Hi Heather - Here it is - all twelve courses: Calamari 'risotto' cauliflower and curry leaf; pretzel radish, caraway butter; celery consommé; dungeness crab, black garlic, nouc mam and charred coconut oil; winter scene (this was the photo of the glass ornament filled with fall flavors - they hung from the chandelier until chef Matt and his crew cut them down and placed them in front of us to our delight); foie gras, carrot, brioche and pine nuts; potato roll, aerated bacon fat and huckleberry jam; gin & tonic experiment (this one is hard to describe but was served in a petri dish!); venison, juniper, sunchoke and bitter chocolate; sweet potato, bay leaf chip ice cream and chocolate cake; whipped chocolate, toffee pop rocks and tonka bean; eucalyptus think mint, parsnip marshmallow. I'm full just typing this! XO

    2. Oh my goodness, thank you so much for typing that all out!!! I just love to think about the different combinations...hoping that ideas will somehow trickle into my home cooking. And to really does sound amazing!

  3. I cannot imagine any place more wonderful than Seattle and the islands. What a Thanksgiving weekend! And, I love Heather Robinson too. Come see all of us tomorrow when we post our monthly "By Invitation Only," it's a Christmas Party tomorrow. xx's

  4. Hello Jeanne

    Your get away to Langley is infinitely better than black Friday shopping. I am intrigued by the 12 course menu.
    Have a great week

    Helen xx

  5. What a wonderful tradition this is, Jeanne. I would not mind partaking in it myself, but I do not think the Inn at Langley would welcome my 13-year old son with open arms. It's too much of a peaceful, romantic place. I just read the menu description you typed for Heather. Wow. It all sounds delicious to me. Maybe I will have to do this by myself next year and leave Junior with friends :-) Veronique (French Girl in Seattle)

  6. Hi Jeanne!

    I love that you set a calm and meaningful tone for your holiday season. Things can get so frantic that we lose sight of the meaning of the season. What a charming island, too! We got our tree up and the outdoor was completed today…I do love it so will share it as soon as I get some photos taken.

    Hoping your holidays are off to a merry start!
    xoxo Elizabeth

  7. Too die for! Our first and only stay in the Inn was over 22 years ago and I can still say it is one of my top dinners out eva'. (how did that coffee taste better than any I've had too?)

    Did I see your comment to Emily correctly your TG dinner was at The WAC? We (our kids generation) have a tradition in Portland at The Town Club - delicious and dressy - we take our pies home.



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