This Time Last Year – Part 27: Dinner at Willows Inn on Lummi Island

Part of a series of posts that cover my travel to Greece and the USA in April/May 2016.

May 12 2016 – Birch Bay, Washington, USA

I received an email from Jenise while I was in Greece: “…we’re taking you for dinner … to Willows Inn on Lummi Island. It’s one of the hardest reservations to get in North America.” She had rung on the off-chance and it must have been fate as there had just been a cancellation.

We travel by ferry to the island for our umpteen course degustation meal. Chef Blaine Wetzell sources all the ingredients from the island or the sea surrounding it. Hence the protein is entirely maritime sourced. The menu is not revealed until the end of the evening but every beautifully presented course is described in detail by whoever serves it, Blaine, or one of his sous-chefs or perhaps one of the sommeliers. It’s very well done.

BYO is allowed. We have Champagne, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. We get the restaurant matches as well. Did anyone say wine?

Several courses are served on the deck then we are shown to a table inside. When the setting sun paints the scene red, my camera draws me out again.

Sunset from Lummi Island

I’ll let the pictures tell the food story until it becomes too dark to photograph.

Crispy Kale Leaf with Black Truffle

Native Shellfish

Wild Herbs and Crispy Mustard Leafs – a stunning match to Bevan Wild Ferment Sauvignon Blanc

Spot Prawns and a fresh vegetable broth

Dungeness Crab in a Puree of Pinenuts and Chateau Montelena Chardonnay

Salmon Berries and Nootka Roses – a refreshing sorbet

The menu exhausted it is time to leave. Once again Bob is designated driver. Once again I doze off in the back seat of the very comfortable SUV sated by one of the best dining experiences of my life. A truly monumental evening at the Willows Inn. Thank you so much Bob and Jenise.


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