This post is more about the dish I ate than the restaurant itself. I am interested if any other Chi Chowhounds have had it and where...
My wife and I had dinner this weekend at the Rockwell Inn in Morris. For those of you who vacation at Starved Rock, this is the sister restaurant to the Red Door in Peru (recently closed).
The restaurant is very nice with an elegant/rustic themed interior. A large, ornate and (they say) historic bar along the wall and soft lighting. On a Friday night, there was a girl playing piano in the main dining room.
We ordered some drinks and, after a quick look at the menu, ordered rumaki as an appitizer (thanks Wade, for reminding me how much I like these!). One interesting point: the waitress took our order on a Palm Pilot (not what I expect for a restaurant in the sticks). Apparently, it contained their whole menu and bar selection. As a bourbon drinker, it was great to get a quick response to the question, "What brands of bourbon do you carry?" I cannot tell you how many upscale restaurants offer me a Jack Daniels.
Anyway, the rumaki was excellant and was served with a house made pinapple sweet-sour sauce. The drinks were brought promptly and we ordered our dinner. There is a salad bar which was good but nothing to particularly recomend it.
Along with the salad bar, however, Rockwell Inn has a bread bar featuring slice-your-own breads baked on site. We tried three different breads and all were excellant.
OK, here it is: My wife went with a fairly common order of Veal Oscar. I am not a great fan of the dish, but she told me it was in the "very good" range: not top-tier but very enjoyable.
I saw something on the menu I had never heard of: Holstein Schnitzel. I talked to our waitress about it and she told me that their regular veal Schnitzel was a very popular item, but the Holstein was very rarely ordered and she couldn't say she had ever eaten it. I ordered it along with a twice baked potato.
Here is what arrived at my table: a large, nicely prepared veal schnitzel, breaded and pan friend in butter (the butter seeping into the breading almost kiev-like). On top of the veal was a large fried egg, capers and anchovies filets. The dish had, I think, been baked a little after being prepared pased on how firm the egg was (the yoke had the consistency of soft boiled). The veal was flanked on one side by the vegetable of the day, a fairly ordinary steamed medly.
I first tried a bite of the veal only. to gage how it was. It was soft, white meat surrounded by a butter soaked breading. If this was a stand alone veal schnitzel, I might have thought there was too much butter. But when I tried a bite of the whole dish: veal, egg, capers and anchovies: amazing. When I began eating, I hardly tasted the anchovies themselves: it seemed that they contributed a salty, oily ingredient to the overall dish, but I had eaten about half the dish before I really noticed a "fish" presence. The richness of the egg blended everything together for a suprising and fun dish.
I can't say I would order Holstein Schnitzel every week, but it was wonderfull when I was in the mood for "something different". I did a quick web search and found the dish on one or two restaurant web sites, but not many.
Is anyone else familiar with this recipe? Are there any other good area places to order it?