The final Scott Joseph’s Supper Club of 2022 took place at Russell’s on Lake Ivanhoe and doubled as a celebration of the restaurant’s second anniversary.
Emmanuel Clement, the chef and co-owner, designed a menu in the spirit of France’s gastronomic dinners, and he, his kitchen brigade and the front of the house staff carried it all off beautifully.
After a reception cocktail in the bar area (I had the restaurant’s signature pineapple old fashioned) we all took our seats in the dining room overlooking Lake Ivanhoe (we had the place to ourselves for the night).
The amuse bouche was blackened scallops, two of them substantial enough to have been an appetizer course. It was served over mashed turnips infused with wholegrain mustard and horseradish. It and the first course were paired with a 2021 Jean Claude Dagueneau Pouilly Fumé.
That first course was sweetbread with shaved truffles, a large lobe served atop a plank of polenta surrounded by jus.
The second course was a creamy white Alaskan turbot, slow cooked and served on mixed vegetables with a butter sauce seasoned with sorrel. Pahlmeyer Jayson Chardonnay from Napa Valley was the pairing.
Following an intermezzo of frozen vodka and Napoleon liqueur, we were served an aged angus beef tenderloin with a layered potato cake. A cabernet reduction sauce with morels graced the meat, which was cooked to a perfect medium-rare. The potato galette was wonderful, too. Comtesse de Malet Roquefort Bordeaux, Saint-Émilion Grand Cru, was just the right wine for the course.
Course four was a beurek, a Middle Eastern savory pastry of phyllo dough stuffed with gorgonzola and walnuts, served on roasted watermelon radish salad.
And to finish, a classic tarte tatin, with apples, salted caramel and crème fraiche, with a Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise to sip.
I was impressed with how well the serving staff kept things moving, and always with proper execution. Nicely done.
Two years ago when Russell’s first opened, of course, we were in the midst of a pandemic. So I shouldn’t be surprised when I ask people if they’ve been yet and they say they weren’t aware of it. So whether it’s new to you or you haven’t been lately, Russell’s on Lake Ivanhoe is still worthy of your attention.
Russell’s on Lake Ivanhoe is at 1414 N. Orange Ave., Orlando (map). It is open for dinner daily and brunch on Saturday and Sunday. The phone number is 407-601-3508.