On October 26th my husband and I celebrated 10 happy years of marriage. A few years ago we had grand plans of celebrating our first decade of marriage with a trip to Argentina and Uruguay…but life got in the way and time and money were needed elsewhere. We did however make certain that we did not miss our yearly anniversary dinner at Amada in Philadelphia. We always opt to do the Chef Tasting which consists of lots of surprise courses. For us it is like Christmas with food. Each dish that arrives to the table is like unwrapping a different unexpected present. They do ask you ahead of time if you have any allergies or other food restrictions so the meal can be tailored to your preferences.
The restaurant keeps dibs on you when you make your reservation so they knew that this was our fifth year returning and when making the reservation my husband mentioned that is was our ten year anniversary dinner. To offer their congratulations our server (who reminded me of actress Kristin Davis) brought us two complementary glasses of champagne (as a note if you go to any of Emeril’s restaurants for a special occasion you will also receive a complementary treat).
Instead of bread, Amada serves a tuna-caper dip with tasty crackers. It is very good. We also ordered a pitcher of white sangria.
Our first course was a meat and cheese platter accompanied by cherry fig preserves. This was followed by a spinach and cheese empanada. Empanadas happen to be one of the foods we are connoisseurs of and this was one of the best we have eaten. The crust melted in my mouth.
The next three courses arrived together. One we have had in the past and were super excited to revisit. It was the short rib flat bread. We also enjoyed a plate of grilled pulpo (octopus), and the thing that looks like a meat log was actually a spinach salad wrapped with Serrano ham. All three dishes were delicious, though the short rib flat bread was my favorite.
The final four courses were lamb chops, sea bass and a variety of sauces to spread on top of pieces of bread spread with goat cheese. We were also treated to a serving of artichoke hearts in a parmesan sauce that made us so excited I forgot to get a picture. Every dish was excellent and was enthusiastically enjoyed.
Finally dessert was served. One dish consisted of tiny Concord grape cakes with a Concord grape dipping sauce; they tasted like little mini pancakes. Our second dessert was a rice pudding matched with a chocolate sorbet. They were accompanied by pine nuts and the cherry fig preserves we encountered at the beginning of our meal. The rice pudding (which I got all to myself since my husband doesn’t like rice pudding) was amazing, especially with the pine nuts sprinkled over top. Trying to fairly divvy up the chocolate sorbet almost resulted in some fork stabbings.
Even if you don’t order dessert, your bill is accompanied by a thin crispy almond cookie. I was stuffed by this point but I couldn’t help taking just a few bites.
Most of our conversation revolved around the food but we did do some reminiscing about our wedding and our “apartment days.” I mentioned that back then I disliked having to go outside and into the shared basement to do my laundry and am happy to have a house with a laundry area which inevitably led to discussing the future possibility of purchasing a new washer and dryer. That conversation made my past overly dreamy tween self groan at the idea that a washer purchase could ever be fodder for romantic anniversary dinner conversation but the thirty-four year old current me found the conversation and new washer prospect thrilling. In all it was a wonderful evening and I hope we will find ourselves sitting here discussing another decade of marriage someday.