Friday, June 28, 2013

The Blue Point

I've always enjoyed dining at The Blue Point in Duck, NC. However, after I was diagnosed with gluten intolerance, I hadn't been back. During my recent trip to the Outer Banks, I wanted to dine out at least once during my stay. I decided to eat later in the week, but not the night before I was leaving....just in case. Kevin made reservations that day before we wanted to dine. We ended up making our reservation for 7:30 for what was available, two open seats at the bar. It turns out that we met some very entertaining guests during the evening so all in all...everything was well. Case in point, if you want to try The Blue Point during your stay, make reservations early. When Kevin called to make reservations he inquired about gluten free options as well. After speaking with the staff during dinner, they do recommend that you tell them at the time of your reservations that you are gluten free.

The Blue Point, Duck, NC
Turns out I was one of two gluten free guests at The Blue Point that day. It looks like word is getting out about gluten free diets...which is a very good thing. The Blue Point doesn't have a gluten free menu per se. However, the bar tender and my server for the night had a printed list of gluten free options that she referred to when going over the menu with me. There were several items on the menu that were gluten free. I was surprised to realize that my options were quite open. The Blue Point celebrates North Carolina coastal cuisine with a modern take on local, seasonal ingredients.
Updated Interior-The Blue Point
Over a decade ago, The Blue Point interior featured the diner ambiance of yester year. While the diner atmosphere is still somewhat evident...the interior had been remodeled to host an contemporary feel. Now, most importantly...the food.
Carolina Pickled Shrimp
For our first course we chose the Carolina Pickled Shrimp. The jumbo pickled shrimp were place on gouda grits. I've really noticed an upscale revival of two traditional, southern and grits. These two items seem to be popping up everywhere. I really enjoyed the slight acidity of the shrimp as well as the tomato jam. Once again, celebrating local, the shrimp were plated with smoked Surry sausage. As a began sampling this dish, I took individual bites of each ingredients. It wasn't until I got a bite of everything a once, that I truly appreciated how amazingly balanced and truly fabulous the dish was.
Spiced Beet & Strawberry Salad
The second course for the evening included the Spiced Beet & Strawberry Salad. This salad is served with Holly Groves Goat Cheese from North Carolina. Most salads I've had it the past, place the goat cheese on top or to the side of the salad. Here, at The Blue Point the salad had a different presentation. For a lack of a better explanation...the goat cheese is smeared on the bottom of the plate and then the salad is finished on top. I enjoyed this, unique approach of ingredient placement. The crunchy, buttery pistachios were the perfect finish to this salad.

Seared Sea Scallops
After finishing our first courses, we had a visit from the chef. I had chosen for my entrée, Seared Sea Scallops. The chef began to inquire about my gluten allergy and to the degree of sensitivity I experience. Traditionally, the scallop dish is served with a broth. The chef was concerned because the broth contained soy sauce. I was extremely, relived that the chef took the time to inquire about my gluten issues and was airing on the side of caution. After chatting for a few minutes, I asked the chef if he could pair my scallops with another type of sauce.
This is what he created....a crème fresh with watercress...absolutely delicious!  I'm not sure if you can tell from this picture but typically, extra items are served on a plate with a white beverage napkin. The Blue Point has taken copies of their wine list as have used the paper on the plate instead. This presentation was completely out of the box...I loved it.
Crispy Cornmeal Fried Carolina Catfish
Kevin selected the Crispy Cornmeal Fried Caroline Catfish. This dish was served with a creole jambalaya. The fish was quite delicious and plated with whole okra. Having something "fried" at a restaurant is quite a treat for being gluten free.  
We also enjoyed an amazing view before dinner. The new layout offers a beautiful setting for guests to enjoy while waiting for their table. The food was just as delicious as I remember from 10 years ago. I was especially grateful that the staff took extra time and precautions when preparing my food as well. I look forward to my next trip to the Outer Banks as The Blue Point is sure to be on my list.
For more information about The Blue Point you can visit them online.


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