There is fine dining and there is fine dining, but Talisker on Main is probably one of my most exceptional dining experiences. Truly, no exaggeration.
With a statement like that you would expect that once the check came at the end of the meal, you would have to sell a kidney in order to fully satisfy your bill. Let me just get a little ahead of myself and say that I have seen much higher prices at restaurants with half the level of service and quality of food.
As reasonable as I thought the prices were, for most people Talisker On Main still isn’t a once a week kind of place; but if you’re ever in the Park City area and are feeling the need to treat your taste buds, make sure you pay the restaurant a visit. I promise you won’t be disappointed.
Nestled on the “main” street in Park City, Utah; from the outside the building is fairly unassuming. I was therefore quit taken aback when I walked in the front door how busy the dining room actually was at Talisker at 7:15pm on Super Bowl Sunday! I had therefore immediately decided that I loved every single person choosing to dine in Talisker at that time!
Being from England I’m still slowly trying to workout the rules to “American” Football, but to be brutally honest I can tell you 101 other things I would rather do with my time. Dining at restaurant’s such as this is one of them.
For my trip to Park City I had decided upon featuring wines from Couloir. I therefore packed my bags with 6 different Couloir wines and jetted off from Jacksonville, Florida.
For my meal at Talisker, I chose the Straight Line California Tempranillo. I did so as I couldn’t find a current menu online (the reason I discovered was that it changes so frequently). The emphasis on the sample menu did seem to be on sourcing locally, with game dishes such as Veal, Rabbit and Elk. I surmised that a Tempranillo would be a good all-round match.
I notified the restaurant in advance that I would be bringing my own bottle, and once I arrived they offered to chill the bottle for ten minutes to get it down to temperature. A nice offer I thought as I have done the same thing a couple of times at other fine dining restaurants, and never before has that service been offered. Bravo to Sommelier Sean Marron!
Heirloom squash soup, chestnut bread pudding, truffle syrup and herb salad
My wife’s starter, beautifully done; I would have never thought to add a small bread pudding into the middle of squash soup, but it provided a perfect contrast . Something I may have to experiment with at home!
The next four photo’s make up the Chef’s Tasting Menu, which I opted for.
Pan roasted diver scallop, black garlic oil, sunchoke & apple tartar and pepper delish
Veal marrow bone, brioche, crispy sweet breads and shank ragout
Heritage Valley rabbit loin, caramelized fennel, yams, arugula, and hay smoked date jus
Rabbit is a tough dish to get right, I always find it to have a gamey taste. This dish was perfection for me. My wife even confirmed my thoughts with “Wow…[still chewing]… that is the best rabbit I have ever had!”
Warm chocolate tart, fleur de sel caramel, house made marshmallow and banana foster ice cream
I’m so glad I opted for the Straight Line Tempranillo out of all my choices of Couloir wines! The wine found a place with the veal marrow bone, rabbit loin and even the chocolate tart with pomegranate.
I first tasted this wine wine a couple of months ago whilst attending a Skype presentation by winemaker Jon Grant, and although each wine he makes is special for its own reason, the Tempranillo really stood out for me.
Very approachable and unique, the wine is rich with black fruit, but has underlying pepper, mocha, clove, herbs and spice. Beautiful complexity, and kind of hard to describe! Just when you think it’s all about the fruit, I take another bite of food and sip of wine and it radically changes.
I find that Spanish Temp’s can sometimes overuse American Oak, which is fine if that’s what you are looking for, but it’s often difficult when pairing with food. The oak was very well integrated and not obnoxious on the Straight Line, certainly not overpowering any of the dishes.
Last but not least, quick shout-out to our waiter Leon. Other restaurants need to work out a way to clone that guy! The food was timed perfectly, service was not overbearing, he was very professional but also able to make the occasional joke or two. When I visit Talisker On Main again, I’ll be calling in advance to make sure he is working.