Monday, July 8, 2013

128 Pecan

A gluten free friend of mine recommend that we give 128 Pecan in Abingdon, Virginia a try. She'd eaten there several times for lunch and always had a positive experience. Recently, I had a night free, so I decided to call to see if they could accommodate a gluten free diet for dinner as well. The lady who assisted me on the phone at 128 Pecan was very polite. She took her time and went through the menu with me, as to what options would most likely be safe. 128 Pecan doesn't take reservations...which worked perfectly for me that night.
128 Pecan, Abingdon, VA

128 Pecan is located in downtown Abingdon, Virginia. When you enter the restaurant you get the feeling that your entering someone's home. The staff welcomes you with a greeting and hello as soon as you enter the door. The atmosphere in 128 Pecan is relaxed, but yet refined. This is the kind of place that your can dress up like I did or stroll in with shorts.

Interior 128 Pecan
The interior walls are adorned with art that changes periodically. The walls are a neutral palate for the art...which is nice. After explaining my dietary restrictions to my server, she was able to direct me to which dishes were gluten free or could be altered to be gluten free. There were several items on the dinner menu that were safe. After a small amount of deliberation, I decided to select the 128 Salmon & Grits.
128 Salmon & Grits
The fillet of salmon was served on White's Mill Grits and topped with Chowchow. Now, let me be honest. I haven't had Chowchow since I was a child. My grandmother would can the stuff from green tomatoes, pepper and onions from the garden. I vividly remember my grandmother going to the cellar, fishing out a can and scooping it on top of pinto beans and cornbread. As a child, I wasn't a fan of Chowchow...well it's amazing what a few years can do for a palate. I served under the direction of the owner/chef Jack Barrow while I was in college. (Long before my gluten free days.) He was one of the owner's of the original Peppermill in Abingdon, VA. When I arrived, I didn't know if Jack would recognize me or not, so, I slipped in 128 Pecan as not to be noticed. I wanted to make sure I was providing an unbiased review....I'll introduce myself the next time I'm in. Long story short, I've always enjoyed Jack's creations. I figured, if Jack had developed the dish, it had to be good. So, I took the plunge and I was amazed at the balance of acidity from the pickled Chowchow broke through the creaminess of the salmon. Actually, there was not one bite of Chowchow left on my plate. Besides the Chowchow, the star of the dish was the salmon. My fish was perfectly prepared, moist and full of flavor without the "farm raised" color.
Caesar Salad Sans Croutons
One of the most surprising aspects of 128 Pecan is the price point. The food was extremely fresh and very affordable. My entrée included a salad as well. I chose the Caesar Salad without croutons. They carefully placed my dressing on the side to avoid cross contamination of the mixing bowl...they did this without asking. I appreciated the extra caution they exercised with the preparation of my meal.
Cobb Salad with Salmon
At 128 Pecan you can eat off the lunch menu in the evening as well. Kevin was in the mood for a salad that night so he chose the Cobb Salad topped with salmon. I didn't sample Kevin's dish but he said he thoroughly enjoyed his entrée as well.
We were also pleasantly surprised at how quickly our food arrived. We never felt rushed through dinner and had a wonderful evening. If you're looking for fresh, flavorful food that's affordable as well, you should check out 128 Pecan...I can't wait to go back.
You can visit 128 Pecan online for more information. 

No comments:

Post a Comment