About Dinner [Restaurant Letter, page 3]
Besides the Testimonials Dinner Speaks for Itself
On a typical day there's a signup sheet for dinner beside the menu, you fill in your name, choices, and the time you'd like to have dinner ... between 6:30 and 7:30 pm.
The chef writes the menu on a white board and displays it next to the check-in window in the dining room. Under the date is two appetizers and starter soup and salad followed by three entrees, for example ...
- 1/2 a Dungeness Crab served with Lemon Butter Scallops wrapped in Bacon served on top of Lettuce
- Butternut Squash Soup w/ a hint of Curry [cup or bowl]
- Salad: Spinach topped with chopped Egg, Bacon, Red Onion, sliced Mushroom, Creamy Garlic dressing.
- Meat varies from a rack of lamb, pork or beef ribs, chicken, pork tenderloin, pork roast, beef roast, to turkey.
- Fish varies from wild sockeye salmon, halibut, ling cod, to red snapper.
- Vegetarian varies from crustless quiche, quinoa bowl w/fresh herbs and vegetables, or a couscous creation.
- In fact, you can make a request!
- Dessert [all desserts are baked in house]
As a server you get to see just how much the guests enjoy their meal. Rarely is there ever food that comes back to the kitchen, unless it's because it was just too much. That in itself is a strong testimonial.
I have also had the privilege to pass on the many complimentary comments to the chef ... as well as, inquiries for soup recipes, the fisherman's stew recipe, and various other recipes.
But before all that I love that I get to compliment our chef on a beautiful dish and the awesome presentation of a dessert before serving a plate.
But don't just take my word for it ... There are two Certificate of Excellence awards displayed on the back wall of the dining room ... for both 2014 and 2015 based on ratings by guests on TripAdvisor.
There are also glowing reviews from guests on TripAdvisor ... complimenting not only the chef for their meals but also for their stay at the Lodge as a whole. And always there is compliments for the host and hostess ... the owners of the lodge.
For example, here's a couple reviews from TripAdvisor ...
July 7, 2016: "Paradise!" A wonderful location away from everything than nature. As soon as you enter the house you feel at home. Charming and friendly hosts. Everything is made with love and passion. The dinner was delicious and the breakfast tasty with fresh fruits and other nice things. Nice rooms, clean and cosy. Very good big beds. The Hidden Cove Lodge was definitely a highlight on my trip and I'm sure, it will be hard to beat!
August 27, 2016: "Stunning place with friendly staff!" We stayed here for two nights and it was a wonderful stay. The lodge is very secluded with a magnificent view of the ocean. A humpback whale swam right past the cove when we were there. The staff is very friendly and helpful. Dan, the owner, has great advice for what to see and do in this part of Vancouver Island. Well worth the visit!
September 2016: "A unique spot, nature and comfort combined." Hidden Cove Lodge is quite remote, the last 3 km to the lodge are dirt road. During the summer the road is good for 2 wheel drive. The room was a good size, and the bathroom was also fine. Not state of the art but adequate. The breakfast is good, all normal items are available. Eggs are cooked upon request, so they are fresh and cooked the way you like em. Dinner is quite elaborate, there is a menu with a choice of starters, main courses, and desserts. The quality of the food is exceptional. Owner Dan has found some excellent chefs who can do miracles in the kitchen. There is also a list of wines which are very reasonably priced. Because the lodge is in the forest and on the sea, we saw lots of wildlife. We spent 3 nights at the lodge and saw sea lions, dolphins, otters, mink, and of course squirrels and lots of birds, all from the lodge! The owners are wonderful people who have a passion for (conservation) nature. Tours like tiderip grizzly tours will pick you up from the jetty of the lodge, so no travel is needed. Very convenient! Altogether this was one of our most memorable and best enjoyed accommodations ever. Very special!
The magic moments don't stop. One day I walked into the dining room from the kitchen and was greeted by ...
fan blown white linen table cloths ... under fully set tables dressed in pink, white, silver ... swaying in perfect harmony with the breeze blowing through branches of a 70 foot spruce tree out front. It made you feel like you were somewhere tropical (that's pretty good coming from Northern Vancouver Island).
One other day I sat eating a packed lunch and watched ...
To my left, over the railing, and outside the living room windows ... sunlight dance across ripples of an incoming tide ... with the same sunlight reflecting across the overhead branches of a fir tree.
Pretty incredible really ... because when you see a fir, hemlock, or spruce tree ... you don't very well imagine how a tree like this could reflect the motion of sunlight dancing across ocean ripples on the branches ... but it does and very beautifully.
Then when I looked out the front windows ... there was the same thing. Not only did the ocean ripples reflect sunlight ... the sunlight was beautifully reflected ... dancing and swirling around the lower to mid branches of the 70 foot spruce tree. It had a kaleidoscope feel. Only constant motion of course.
This is the everything else that contributes to a great dining experience ... when you already know for certain you'll enjoy your meal.
You find yourself in a natural environment that instantly boasts beauty, strength, nature, intrigue, and fascination ... and is only something you see when you anticipate, appreciate, and feel abundant with gifts you're about to receive (ahh ... you don't get past scarcity ... you start beyond it) ... hey, this is true all time, isn't it? It's the magic of being in the moment.
I've worked here a little less than two seasons (a season is 4 ½ months) and so far this is what I've seen ... which is a lot.
It's a combination of nature ... beauty ... people ... connection ... happiness ... excitement ... passion ... enthusiasm ... and reflection in the voices of our guests ... in the joy of our guests.
If you like you can read their excitement and appreciation for the things I've been talking about ... from what they've written on TripAdvisor.
You can accept this invitation to you and Sage ... drop by for dinner and read a thing or two for yourself in the guest books.
Or better yet, you can share in the beauty of the place ... add your own story or two, or three, and plus even more moments of joy ... beauty ... connection ... happiness ... excitement ... passion ... enthusiasm ... and reflection of those moments.
I'm getting ahead of myself ... let me explain a little bit about why else you might be interested in coming ... and I'll do that right here.
Dinner Invitation for Two
my second go through of the program! ... back to home page.