The heart of a tree,
The butt of a gun.
Forty six years ago,
They had such fun!
The kitchen, the bathroom,
The bedroom and hall.
Which one is left out?
The best one of all!
With a busy day at work, the poem only went out at noon and therefor didn’t give Her a lot of time for sleuthing… sorry.
She focused on the first two lines and guessed “Oak Barrel”. Not bad… completely wrong end of the gun, but not bad… She started focusing too hard on the word “barrel”, so I quickly had to run Her through some simple rifle anatomy. Unfortunately, even when she figured out the butt was the “back part of the gun”, she couldn’t get to the synonym… I really should know my audience better.
She jumped to the second verse and tried that for a while. She came up with some great restaurant names. The Oak Room (I’m picturing a whiskey and cigar bar); The Attic (Eclectic loft with tapas); The Basement (Maybe a speakeasy style bistro?). Great names. All wrong though.
I prompted her on the 46 year clue. She did the math (1969) and started thinking out loud. (cute) She eventually came to: “What was that music festival called? W… W… W-something… WOODSTOCK! The restaurant’s in Woodstock! “ Yes. The heart of a tree is made of – wood. And the butt of a gun is called a – stock. Wood-stock. Woodstock.
With that it came time to leave for the restaurant, so she gladly traded guessing for waiting.
The Dining Room is a little hole-in-the-wall in Woodstock only 2,5 km from the city centre. It’s so innocuous in fact that I drove right past it the first time! When you enter however, the ambiance is so warm and inviting that you immediately feel right at home.
The décor looks exactly like your grandmother’s old dining room did. Back in the days before the open plan craze turned living rooms, dining rooms and kitchens into giant “entertainment areas” and when dining rooms were for special dinners and Sunday lunch. Dark wood tables and floors complement the pencil portraits and giant d’Hondecoeter fresco.
The Dining Room isn’t licensed, so we brought a delicious Maison Blanc de Noir along (Thanks Tim!). The waiter placed the bottle on ice and was on hand for a refill, on time, every time – good start.
The three course set menu changes every day (well, Tuesdays and Thursdays – the only days they are open) and is mostly served “to share”, reinforcing the feeling that you are having a family dinner. The starters were fantastic and I especially enjoyed the oyster shooter.
The mains were a choice between a rib-eye roast, fried Kabeljou and a veggie option that I ignored and therefore cannot remember. I opted for the rib-eye (Gasp!! Shocker, I know…) and She opted for the fish. The mains were served with shared sides of green beans and salad.
The meal reminded me of a million roast dinners I have had before (roast beef, potatoes, beans, salad), but with a MASSIVE twist! The roast beef was rib-eye, with an amazing crème-fraîche stuffing; the fish was sesame infused and flash fried; the beans were done with roasted nuts and ginger; the salad was… well, I don’t know, just amazing (so I’m not a professional food critic, sue me). Every single bite was full of bold flavours and the sauces were especially tasty. In short, I was blown away.
There were also three options for desert. I went for lemon meringue pie and she opted for a very tasty Lemon-Tequila Sorbet. Both were good and I left curious about the Coffee flavoured mouse that we didn’t try!
I loved it. The décor was interesting and the ambience lively. Exactly like a dining room would be during a large friendly family dinner. The food is the coup de grace and if every menu is as tasty as this, I want to go back next week!
We had a table for two, but I think The Dining Room will really come into its own when you have a big group of friends, passing the serving bowls around, sipping wine and chatting up a storm. So, gather up some friends and book a table – I guarantee you will not regret it!