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Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Culinary delight of The SchoolHouse in Cannondale CT.

Last night we had another wonderful dinner with our neighbors at The Schoolhouse. This small little church like building was built in 1872 after the Civil War in another part of Wilton CT as a one room classroom. Vaudeville actress June Havoc, a Wilton resident, had the building moved to it's current location when she took charge of creating the town of Cannondale. She owned all of Cannondale "town", literally 6 small buildings and sold them all 1989.
          It now houses one of Connecticut's most adored restaurants owned and operated by chef Tim LaBant. It's a cozy building with banquet seating against the wall and tables floating in the middle, and is nestled between the few other shops in Cannondale on one side and the Norwalk River on the other. 


      I first went here when I moved from NYC to CT and was desperate for the culinary experience I was use to in NY. I was not disappointed. Chef LaBant had just opened, but his food was not compromised by the fragility of a new business. His farm to table food was rich, fresh and unusual. 
    Last night I took three new comers to The Schoolhouse, the non-foodies (my hubby and my friends hubby) and then the real foodie who I will call D. I have decided D and I should dub ourselves the Culinary Queen, as we both LOVE food, we love unusual food, but really we have a huge respect for what "real" chefs are doing in the kitchen. D runs a restaurant in South Norwalk so dining with her I am getting more of a well rounded critic of the culinary world. We understand that a price tag cannot be placed on what should happen in your mouth when you eat something truly amazing. Our husbands on the other hand feel quite differently...but enough about them.
    As a side note I have decided to go buy a new and much better camera. My pictures below of our food are dreadful. I have been scolded by another, much more famous blogger, that I must invest in my work. SO, in the very near future my posts that include my own photography should look at least a little better. Until then bare with me and ENJOY!!


www.schoolhouseatcannondale.com

www.schoolhouseatcannondale.com

www.schoolhouseatcannondale.com

www.schoolhouseatcannondale.com





Tyler Taylor
One day I will write about some of my crazy collections. One of them happens to be anything with my married name on it. This is a nice touch The Schoolhouse adds to your menus. 

Tyler Taylor
Millstone Guanciale w onion-fennel fondue,fried egg and cress
This was my first course, we all try something different and then share. I think I picked the best one on this night. This is the experience you hope for when tying something new.  The guanciale was a thick with just enough fat on it, the egg seemed baked rather then fried because it was so soft and perfect and with the fondue and crispy onion...it was out of this world. 

Tyler Taylor
Millstone tomato salad w beans, feta and watercress

Tyler Taylor
Pork two ways: Belly and loin w champlain polenta,pickled okra and Bok choy.
This was my dinner and I am sad to say I was underwhelmed. Pork belly is one of my favorite delicacies and it just didn't have that buttery taste it should. The loin was slightly dry and lacked flavor.

In saying this it's not to disparage LaBant, he is an excellent chef. Some things work and some do not. However, our wonderful waiter let us discuss each dish with him (the great ones and the not so great) and he said LaBant loves the feedback. The best part of The Schoolhouse is that since it's a farm to table restaurant, the menu changes weekly.

Tyler Taylor
D had natural filet of beef w confit potatoes, beet greens and trumpet mushrooms. I thought the beef was cooked perfectly, but I think we both agreed the mushroom sauce could have been a bit bolder.

Tyler Taylor
Duck w marble potatoes,wax beans, maitake mushrooms and asparagus.
The Romanian made a bold choice (for him) with the Duck. He gives this a nine out of 10. LOL-that was his best description. Note to self: Romanian not going to be easy to turn this one into a foodie.


Tyler Taylor
Chocolate souffle w dark chocolate sauce and ice cream
Rich and so yummy. It was enough for all four of us to split.

Almond cake with peaches.
This was fresh and light, but hard to eat in this glass.

Chef Tim LaBant- picking herbs from the outside garden.

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