Imagine five-star accoladed dining in the height of historic architecture, within the heart of Virginia's Capital: Welcome to Lemaire, the signature dining experience at The Jefferson Hotel, Richmond. The epitome of high-end Southern cuisine and hospitality with a global twist.
It was an easy choice starting off with a crisp and oh so refreshing glass of Sauvignon Blanc. You might as well have two, as you scantily peruse the magnificent historic architecture surrounding you.
From the detailed columns, to the hand-blown chandeliers, please do let me know what part of the ambiance you enjoyed most.
A lover of (almost) all things raw, I began dinner with Marinated Ahi Tuna Tartare. This decadent dish was prepared with Castelvetrano olive tapenade, cured egg yolk, drizzled with tomato viniagrette and finished with lavash crisps.
A tartare buff by nature, this was my first time having "marinated" tuna tartare and wow, I can say that the flavors popped like none I've ever had before. From now on, I want my tartare marinated!
Next, I was totally in the mood for the Jumbo Lump Blue Crab Cake. Fresh from Maryland of course! Plated with broccolini, roasted cauliflower, piquillo peppers, benne (sesame) and finished with spring onion cream, every single flavorful bite left me craving the next.
I mean, when aren't you in the mood for crab cakes? Always delicious and satisfying, these did not disappoint and I appreciated the broccolini and cauliflower added into the mix.
I love sea scallops, so the Cast Iron Seared Jumbo Sea Scallops were obviously calling my name.
The sea scallops, seared to perfection, sat atop succulent shellfish broth-marinated Italian fregola pasta, blended with Eastern shore clams, Kite’s country ham (a local specialty) and Swiss chard. So good.
Dining at Lemaire is simply not complete without dessert. As you can see by the plating, this is a fact.
The Meyer Lemon Tart, filled with freshly juiced Meyer lemons, was topped with torched meringue. When I took the last bite, I was sad indeed.
Perhaps the best part is knowing that they have an outdoor terrace, whether for cocktails or dinner—complete with oscillating fans for that Southern Virginia heat.
**Guests of Lemaire are invited to valet park using the Franklin Street entrance of the hotel or to self-park in either the Main Street or Franklin Street parking lot at no charge.