This Jay Restaurant is a Steak Lovers Dream| 02.07.18
Downside: On the Pricier Side, Out of the way if you are not already in Jay
Mountain Rating: 7.8/10
The Jay Village Inn Restaurant is a bit of a drive from the rest of the Kingdom, especially in the winter. But if you are in the Jay or Troy vicinity, the Jay Village Inn has some tasty menu items that will help make the trip worth the drive.
We were in the area because I had received a trip to the spa as a fantastic Christmas gift. Though we were at Jay Peak Resort, we had been told by a number of people to try the Jay Village Inn, so on this trip to Jay we did just that.
Right away I was in love with the décor. It feels like a ski chalet – with exposed wood, a roaring fire, comfy couches and all the memorabilia you’d expect to find at a location dominated by skiers for a large part of the year.
Unfortunately, the couches were taken. See, the weather was awful with wind gusts creating white out conditions and the temperature well below zero. I was already imagining cocktails and apps in front of that roaring fire… but the fantasy wasn’t to be this time.
Instead we took a table nearby.
At first glance, I was surprised by the menu. It seemed to lack in focus, with a wide variety of apps, barbecue, a few sandwiches, burgers, steak dishes, a few pasta and seafood options, and a list of specials that also seemed to be all over the place as far as cooking style and cuisine. But as I went through the menu a bit more and heard all of the skiing talk around me, I realized that this restaurant is catering to the wants of its guests. Being so far away from other towns and restaurants, this menu offers a lot of different options to please any pallet.
A part of the menu is dedicated to steak. One can choose from a Delmonico or New York Sirloin cut, and six different preparations that include different sauces and accompaniments.
We started with a few drinks to warm us up – namely the Hot-N-Saucy, a hot apple cider cocktail mixed with Captain Morgan. It was just the thing to chase away the chill.
For an appetizer we ordered the Trout Bruschetta. This dish arrived beautifully plated and smelled wonderful. It consisted of smoked trout – prepared in house, on toasted bread, drizzled with a balsamic reduction, and served with olives and tomatoes. The sharp, salty olives pared with the smoked fish wonderfully while the fresh flavor of the tomato and the balsamic brightened up the dish and kept it from being too heavy.
That night we had a third person with us – the perfect opportunity to try an extra entrée. I ordered a dish from the regular menu – JR’s Sautéed Garlic Shrimp and Scallops. Now I have to admit, we were a little surprised by the prices at first. Many of the menu items seemed to be priced higher than other area restaurants. But when my meal came, the portion size was so large I could see the reason behind the cost. The dish was heaped with pasta, shrimp and scallops covered in a Parmesan cream sauce prepared with red peppers and mushrooms. It was delicious. The sauce was thick and tasted of fresh grated Parmesan. I ate about a third of the meal – and it was my lunch for two more days!
The steak dishes ordered by my husband and sister-in-law were just as impressive.
My husband ordered the surf and turf on special. This was a filet mignon cut versus the Delmonico or NY Sirloin on the regular menu. The special came with crab stuffed shrimp, mashed potato, and sautéed veggies. The filet was thick with a good sear on the outside. My husband had ordered his steak cooked medium rare. It came out slightly overcooked with the very center being to temp, but beyond that it was a nice cut of meat that melted in your mouth. The mashed potatoes were delicious, creamy with plenty of salt and butter.
The fresh veggies consisted of green beans and broccoli that were cooked perfectly – meaning they still had texture, color, and a bright flavor. The shrimp stole the dish though – well seasoned, with a discernible crab flavor not hidden by breadcrumbs or filler.
My sister-in-law ordered the Delmonico steak prepared with a Maytag blue cheese reduction. Now, I didn’t think I was going to try this as I am not a fan of blue cheese anything. But when the dish came, and I saw that the cheese was prepared as a sauce (and it smelled wonderful), I changed my mind and took a bite. I am glad I did. The saltiness and sharpness of the cheese really changed the flavor of the meat without overpowering it. Her steak was cooked to a perfect medium rare allowing the steak juice to meld with the cheese sauce. It was a fantastic combination.
Both of the steak entrées came with large portions of everything, and all of our meals came with salads. This meant I wasn’t the only one in need of a to go container.
The Jay Village Inn was a surprising find. I had expected more of a fine dining feel but instead the dining room and bar have a cozy cabin atmosphere and the menu offers hearty meals perfect for the location (at the base of a ski mountain).
The night we were there the restaurant was packed so service was a little slow. But our server was attentive, and we didn’t have to wait long between our appetizer and our meal so the kitchen timing was right on. From what I could see, other tables seemed to enjoy good service from the rest of the staff as well.
There were a number of items that looked delicious but of course you can’t try them all in one visit – something to tease the imagination until the next time we are in Jay!
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