But friends are stepping in to help. The Cordis Couple are friends with terrific taste in food and wine -- and a toddler old enough to leave with family. They recently hit up Iron Bridge Wine Co., the Columbia restaurant that was on our "to do" list all summer but never actually gone done.
Sra. Cordis wrote up their dinner from last week. They recommended a great red wine called Quilceda Creek, and they do recommend Iron Bridge -- especially for a mix of small plates:
Iron Bridge is one of our favorite local restaurants to go to for date night. Our first time there with our toddler wasn't the most successful (what were we thinking?), but subsequent visits there solidified this restaurant as our go-to-place for a delicious adult meal with wine as the star of the evening.
In general, we prefer several small plates rather than large entrees. We typically order 3-4 appetizers and one entree for two adults. The crispy brussels sprouts, although ubiquitous at most hip restaurants, are absolutely delicious. So is their burata, with its soft creamy inside, complimented with tomato and fennel jam, olive oil and sea salt. The hamachi ceviche, served with roasted pineapple, red onion, macadamia nuts, cilantro, and Sriracha, is a lovely balance of acid, heat, and crunchiness. The soup of the day was a white asparagus soup with beans and crispy fried kale, which was a little salty and bitter, but warmed us up for the rest of the meal.I'm going to need to annotate the HowChow To Do List with some things that I can really do and some that need to wait a while until we can match Lil' Chow with some babysitters.
For their entrees, almost all their pasta dishes are outstanding and typically change with the season. T onight's pasta was a kale and ricotta cannelloni made with savory fennel sausage Bolognaise, which was terrific and went well a bold full-bodied red wine. Their burger is excellent, and their signature steak is outstanding. In general, I find their protein entrees (e.g. steak, salmon), while extremely tasty, a bit large/generously proportioned. However, they are great for sharing, especially if you want to make room for dessert. Typically, their 'bread pudding of the day' is the highlight of their dessert menu. My personal favorite was a bread pudding made of glazed donuts. It was worth all the calories.
We feel fortunate to have a place like Iron Bridge so close by. Not only is it a wonderful restaurant, but it is also a wine store. I n fact, we often bring home a few bottles after dinner (and, at times, a couple of cases), in hopes of recreating the experience at home (at least the wine part).