Saturday, November 21, 2009

First Up at Morgans

Fans of Rattlesnake can finally dry their tears: Jimmy Schmidt and his A-team are back at Morgans in the Desert at La Quinta Resort and Club. Or, we should say, will be back as Winewomen were honored by last night's fab debut sneak preview dinner by Schmidt, Chef Brian Recor and sommelier Francois Cinq-Mars in support of Shelter From The Storm.

In case you weren't able to join us, plan to scout out Morgans' soft-opening beginning in early December before they officially open around Jan. 26th. Schmidt & Co. have already hit their stride as we savored exquisite cheese, olives and spiced nuts for starters with Pommard Champagne, followed by a floral-scented local fig salad accented by pink grapefruit-perfumed St. Supery Sauvignon Blanc.

Next came the double-whammy: entrees of Maine über-scallops with extra-terrestrial spaghetti squash and duck breast with wild mushroom risotto and crispy onions, served with 2007 La Crema 2007 Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Pinch us, but not too hard - dessert's coming.

Pastry? Coming up, as Schmidt's team rolled out chocolate truffles with a big whiff of espresso shot on the finish, mini-chocolate mousse towers, two-bite fruit tarts and choco-laced strawberries that made us weak in the knees. Morgans' able staff kept us tanked on coffee and tea for the ride home.

Lovely Kate Spates introduced Shelter's moving video about the good they do and a prayer by a Sheltered sister, who tucked in her children at night thankful for an "average day" – a deep comment to remember on days when we're sidetracked by silliness.

Thanks to Jimmy, Kate, Michelle, John, Kathleen, Francois and all who made this debut night so magical. We'll be visiting you all season long – welcome back!

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