The Hottest Table in Town

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            It’s not even a town; it’s an island, but suddenly we’ve got one of the hottest destination restaurants in the country just a mile up the road. The New York Times gave this incredible quote, “…one of 10 restaurants worth a plane ride” (Jan. 7, 2011) about our own Willows Inn.  The Willows has been a wonderful, conscience driven inn and restaurant for decades, nabbing an article in Gourmet magazine just a few years ago.  This new launch to Top 10ness, however, is due to their brilliant new chef, Blaine Wetzel.  A native of Olympia, WA, Blaine trained and worked in several restaurants in the West before working at the famous Noma in Copenhagen.  Hype and credentials aside, this is a young man with a crystal clear vision of the style of food he wants to create and then the skills to execute a succession of dishes that make you stop and truly ponder/savor what you are tasting.  His dishes are heavily based on local produce and seafood to which some magical molecular gastronomy is applied.  From cedar box smoked salmon bites to goeduck clams in a tiny avalanche of horseradish snow, the meal is a series of amazements.  Don’t even think you will be able to tell your friends later what you had for dinner.  You will remember the meal through a series of sensory impressions that, like art,  make a satisfying whole.   

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