On Tuesday night, I had the opportunity to attend Taste of Park Plaza, a sold out even to benefit the Greater Boston Food Bank! I had never been to the Park Plaza Hotel and didn't quite know how everything was going to be set up, so I was surprised when I got there and realized that all the participating restaurants were actually in the bottom of the Hotel!
I met up with a friend of mine (the owner of the cute dogs i have had the pleasure of sitting) at the hotel, where we received our Passport showing a map of the participating restaurants. The idea was to make our way around the hotel to try signature dishes and drinks.
While we contemplated starting with dessert first, we headed to Bonfire to get the ball rolling. The tastings at Bonfire were delicious-- on the top of the plate was a black garlic empanada, the lower half a surf and turf taco. We met up with Tina, Mal and Mary Kate here, and lingered over a glass of wine before moving to the next destination together.
Next up was the Melting Pot, who was a little ill-prepared for the amount of people that happened to go there at once! We were able to sample both the cheddar cheese and dark chocolate fondue here.
I think this is one type of dish that's hard to do in such large quantities, as the quality was not like my previous experience (different location).
We then meandered across the hallway to McCormick & Schmick's, which was pretty busy as well. After enjoying a glass of wine while looking at empty platters, we were finally able to sample their appetizers-- a Pan Seared Tuna w/Wasabi Dressing and Bruschetta. The wasabi on my piece of tuna was a bit overwhelming, but it finally subsided and I got to enjoy some nice garlicky tomatoes :)
On our way out, we spotted Anna and her sister Meg, who joined us at Swan's Cafe. Here I tried their Tea-Cured Smoked Salmon, which was good, but I didn't taste any tea. I kinda felt like if you were going to go through all the work to infuse the salmon with tea, shouldn't you taste it? They also had some Tea Brined & Spiced Chicken Wings, but I'm not a fan of wings so I passed. We all thought it would be neat to go to a proper afternoon tea here!
I was getting quite full at this point, but I really enjoyed the Shepard's Pie at our next stop, M.J. O'Connor's :) This would be perfect on a crisp fall day! They also offered up a Clam Chowder.
Rounding the corner, we found ourselves at Au Bon Pain where they had plenty of Watermelon Lemonade and BBQ Chicken Sandwiches! I was only thinking of dessert at this point, so I stuck to the delicious cup of
It was then time to make our way to one of the places I'd had my eye on ever since I moved to Boston- finale! Dark chocolate decadence indeed, this was fantastic :) Described as a flourless chocolate cake, I almost thought its texture was more like a dense mousse. Very delicious and gone all too quickly!
Our last stop was Ben & Jerry's, where they had the mini pints available for the event. A few bites of strawberry cheesecake and I was VERY happy to walk to the T!
~phew~ What a night! This was a great way to get introduced to some new restaurants, for them to showcase their food, and to support a good cause! Great food and company, not a bad way to spend your birthday ;)