Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Another brief check in. Unfortunately, Tom Whitaker and his family have left for Florida, where Tom now heads up the culinary program at the Colony Hotel in Palm Beach. We really miss the Whitaker's and look forward to visiting them down south.Tom is extremely talented and the food/ service at the Inn were much improved from his predecessor - I could probably write a multi-part post on the chefs at the Ashby and their culinary styles/ ups and downs. 

Brad Spates has taken over for Tom, effective a few weeks ago. The menu has turned over, and is a bit more rustic than in the past.  Appetizers were a round of oysters, tomato soup, and veal meatballs (x3). Mains last night in our group included a crabcake entree (x2), venison stew, and filet. Portions were large, to the point that I was unable to finish my venison stew. Rave reviews were given to the crabcakes, and I really enjoyed the venison, which was presented in a cast iron pot, set up similarly to shepherd's pie in that pureed potatoes covered the stew. Our group also had a few bottles of the '09 Peay Les Titans, which is in an excellent place right now, and paired well with the venison and filet. No so much with the crabcakes, as you'd expect. We had a great time and everyone loved their meal. The place was absolutely packed as well, which was a nice surprise. I'm a fan of the Ashby so take this review as you will from someone whose name is (literally) on the wall there, but seems like things are going well thus far. Now let's hope Chef Spates stays the course and is given the freedom he needs.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another quick check in. Had an enjoyable meal at the Ashby last friday, however the restaurant does seem in a bit of flux. Chef Spates is still there, but the longtime sommelier Stuart Brennan has left, and the wine list has been sharply curtailed - it's now two pages, front and back - one red and one white. Apparently the rationale is that the prior wine list was "too intimidating" or something. Whatever. The old wine list is still available upon request. I should note that the wines currently on the "list" represent excellent values. While not my usual bag, we enjoyed an '07 Araujo Eisele Vineyard for $212, which is below current retail.

The menu has changed as well - now organized into appetizers, "Steaks & Chops", and "Land, Sea and Air". Side orders are now available, as are a la carte sauces. Everything we ordered was well-prepared and tasty, if a bit unexciting relative to prior meals - up to and including our first meal with Chef Spates in the kitchen. I'm hopeful that Chef Spates will be given more room to create and develop the menu further as spring rolls around.

There's apparently still a  tasting menu available, but we weren't offered it this time around.

I continue to root for the Inn and enjoy my meals there. Hope that the longer-tenured staff and Chef Spates continue to persevere.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

.....And Brad Spates is OUT at the Ashby. A Chef named Jonathan Leonard has taken over the kitchen. Reserving judgement for now.

Relatively few people on here may have had his food, but man do I miss Tom Whitaker. He did an incredible job and was criminally underrated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...