I’ve known chef Randall Doetzer for awhile now but had never eaten at Julep’s where he has been the Chef for a number years. Shame on me. I am not proud to admit this, but I never venture out to eat in the Bottom. I know I’m hardly alone in that, but it does nothing to lessen my embarrassment.
Tonight I had the immense pleasure of attending their tenth anniversary wine dinner. The evening featured Barboursville wines and started with a minerally and delicious Sauvignon Blanc. Each dish was accompanied with selections from the local vineyard as well as Jason Tesauro’s non stop wit. By the way, he has some serious new cowboy boots, and you should be very jealous. Julep’s is known for its very traditional Southern cuisine but the courses tonight made clear the effort that was made to bring these iconic dishes to a new and fresher relevance.
Due to a very unfortunate allergy I recently acquired, I had to forgo the shrimp and grits but was beyond delighted, (I think I may have sworn gleefully in fact) when I was presented with a substitute of pork cheeks so delicate and tender, a casual look could cut through them.
The Grouper with new potatoes and baby Bok Choy in broth that made the table both swoon and consider slurping was also a favorite. It was one of those “oh-wait-I-ate-it-before-I-could-photograph-it dishes. Additionally, I won’t soon forget the homey warm blanket nature of the rack of Wild Boar, sweet potato and chard (good grief that CHARD!!) in a gentle mustard gravy.
Moral of this story, get over yourself and eat at Julep’s. I did and it was awesome.