enjoyed a fantastic meal last night at AOC Bedford care of my girlfriend. we had a wonderful time and the service was great.
started off the night with a bottle of cotes du rhone, which was recommended by our server since we told him right away that we were going to order the suckling pig for 2. we put that order in immediately since we'd heard that it takes a bit longer than other entrees to prepare.
next we considered having some cheese as an appetizer, but our server mentioned that the cheese course is usually offered after the entrees and before the desert. we didn't really care and were almost ready to have some cheese anyway, but decided to take another look at the appetizers offered. a lot of things sounded good, but in the end it was the sweet potato gnocchi with duck which caught our eye. it was listed under the entrees, but we thought it sounded so good that we decided to have it as an appetizer. and it just so happened that they serve said dish also as an appetizer in a smaller portion. perfect!
the sweet potato gnocchis were absolutely tender and melt-in-your-mouth good. and they were served in a dug ragu of sorts. it consisted of shredded braised duck in a red wine sauce. to our surprise there was more duck than gnocchi. they two went perfectly together. oddly enough, the dish was reminiscent of brisket. this is a good thing since my gf and I both love a great brisket.
we were also served some great crusty/chewey bread along with some butter, olive oil & sea salt. tried not to fill up on it, but it was so good, too...
finally the moment of truth arrived and they brought out the beautiful, crispy-skinned pork leg. it was magnificent, and the two of us were as excited as kids in a candy store. our server deboned part of the leg and divided it into two portions. he proceeded to plate the pork alongside candied dates, braised endives, and vanilla mashed potatos.
as we both dug into the first bite we were mesmerized by the exquisite combination of crispy skin, melty fat and tender meat. the pork brilliantly melded the best aspects of duck confit and carolina pulled pork. we ate very slowly, accenting the air with 'oohs' and 'aahs'.
the vanilla mashed potatos were creamy and delicious and a perfect accompaniment, as were the dates... i don't believe i'd ever had braised endives before and found them to be bitter, but i think they're supposed to be. either way, i was not as into them as the rest of the dish, but didn't really care because i came for the pig.
twas a great meal. one of the best i've ever had. it really held up to our expectations. where else does your server ask, "How is your pig?"
after finished our pig, we were offered the cheese course, but unfortunately had to decline because we both felt stuffed. which was surprising because at i didn't think it looked like a lot of pork when they first brought out the leg.
we were then offered desert or an appertif, but we again declined because once again we really couldn't eat another bite.
our server returned moments later with two small glasses of Calvados (French brandy made from apples) insisting that we try it and that it was on the house. the Calvados was quite tastey, indeed. reminiscent of whiskey, but with sweeter, dryer undertones. very nice.
overall it was a truly decadent meal, and i'd happily recommend this place to anyone and everyone. i'm hoping to return sometime soon to try their prix fixe menu for $29, which includes some nice dishes.
thank you to sgordon for recommending a great place!