Dishin': Four Swallows, You Had Us at Duck

The fine folks at The Four Swallows invited us over (by over, we mean across Puget Sound) for some supper. Saturday was a superb day for a ferry ride, and after a short stroll through town, we reached the farmhouse that’s been home to the restaurant for 16 years.

Inside, it’s quaint and charming, with the staff adding to the warmth of the home. The menu changes daily, tilting a bit toward Italian, but reflecting a wide variety of dishes using specially sourced and seasonal ingredients. We decided to let Chef Geraldine Ferraro (no, not the one who said Barack Obama is “lucky” to not be white or female) do the choosing for us. She chose well.

Four Swallows, you had us at duck.

The smoked duck breast appetizer was our first dish. We love duck—the fat, the flavor, and the full-on red color. Several slices swimming in a rich cherry-red wine sauce would have been enough to make us happy, but this dish also featured Persephone Farm greens and buttered brioche along with it. Oh, and wait…hiding beneath…some Delice de Bourgogne cheese. We’re talking triple cream that’s rich, smooth, and slightly pungent. (We purr for pungent.) The dish was delicious—simple and sensational ingredients contributing varying textures and tastes.

The same greens reappeared (no complaint!) in a roasted beet salad with Point Reyes Original Blue cheese, candied pecans, and balsamic vinaigrette. We enjoyed a grilled Carlton Farms pork chop served with red onion marmalade that elevated its elegance, and an Alaskan halibut filet that was perfectly cooked (seared outside, succulent inside) and generous in portion—though some light saucing might have made it even better. The signature bread pudding dessert was heavenly and put the meal over the top. We were full for the 15-minute walk back to the ferry—full of happy memories, particularly the duck.

Originally posted at Seattlest (where “we” = me) on April 28, 2008.

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