Upon opening the door at the Inn at Pound Ridge one is immediately drawn to the entrance fireplace and beautiful display of Autumn bounty of gourds and pumpkins. The space is inviting and warm with a casual sophisticated flair. Reclaimed wood, high ceilings in the main upstairs dining room and custom lighting create a soothing environment in which to dine. One has the immediate feeling that a special dining experience awaits.
There are two floors on which to dine at the Inn at Pound Ridge as well as a large bar area. All these spaces are all unique. The original building dates to 1833 when it was constructed as a home, but the property has served as an Inn for many years. The Inn at Pound Ridge now owned and run by international chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten brings fantastic cuisine to this landmark restaurant. The main floor of the Inn is a blend of modern design yet retains much of the charm of the original structure with fireplaces, wide plank wood floors, bleached wood and exposed rustic wood beams and trusses. I chose to eat on the lower level which is divided into smaller more intimate spaces and gave me the feeling I was in a secret yet warm place inside a castle with its exposed stone walls.
There are several seating options from the small fireplace room behind the bar with its inviting couches and antique coffee table which offers a great place to enjoy a drink to the main dining area. The bar is comfortable and looks like it would be right at home in the English Countryside. There is an understated elegance to this space and the wait staff was well prepared to tend to you from start to finish.
The menu is a farm to table cuisine with many of the ingredients being locally sourced from farms in the Hudson Valley and New England. Such a culinary philosophy brings great taste to each dish. I began my meal with a soothing and quite tasty lentil soup. The broth was expertly prepared with just the right amount of seasoning. It was a flavorful and hearty soup that was just perfect for a November afternoon.
Another appetizer to try is the Butternut squash salad with sliced apples and pumpkin seeds in a yogurt dressing. This was light and delicious and the perfect pairing of fruit and vegetables. Also a perfect selection with keeping with the spirit of harvest.
My main dish was the salmon salad which consisted of a nice portion fresh salmon filet, encrusted with sesame seeds and served with a superb Asian dressing on the greens. Truly a delicious and healthy choice. Another nice selection was the Fish and Chips, which was nicely prepared with a light and flavorful batter for extra crunch. The cod was not greasy and was flakey, very fresh and served with potato slices.
You must not leave without trying one of the wonderful desserts prepared by top pastry chefs. The Almond Cake was scrumptious and had just the right amount of sweetness with a nutty note.
I also sampled the Warm Chocolate Cake which melts in your mouth with the velvet feel of the fresh cake and the soft chocolate inside. The ice cream here is similar to gelato and I had the pleasure to taste is beautifully presented in bowl lined with warm chocolate syrup and sprinkled with caramel corn which gave a crunch to the smoothness of the ice cream.
The Inn at Pound Ridge is a special restaurant with a beautiful atmosphere. Reservations are a must at this popular Jean-Georges restaurant. The level of culinary skill and expertise makes this the perfect spot for a special occasion or for getting out and having a great dining experience.
The Inn at Pound Ridge by Jean-Georges
258 Westchester Ave Pound Ridge New York tel: 914-764-1400
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