WARNING: This will make you hungry! The post is long but if you love food you will want to read every word.
I was invited to spend a couple days at Massanutten Resort in McGaheysville Virginia to experience their food and drinks. We have discussed in the past how I have been letting my taste buds go on adventures after spending years of being picky. I was excited and nervous at the same time.
We arrived at the resort and I was in awe at the beautiful 360 view! We were snuggled in between the Blue Ridge and Massanutten mountain range. The true 4 season resort is spanned over 6,000 acres and perfect for couples and families to get away.
Discovering New Food
Our welcome dinner was at Campfire Grill. The rustic casual dining venue puts a delicious spin on your traditional campfire favorites. Decorated with draped material over a few of the tables reminded you of a tent or you could sit at an upscale picnic table, even the tableware stayed in theme with tin plates and mason jar glasses. The delicious food, live music, fire pits, and drinks had me feeling like I was at camp ….. but the kind I like!
We started on the patio, sitting on the comfy couches by the firepit. Sipping cocktails and enjoying appetizers.
Meeting new friends
Fresh fruit and cheese platter
My new favorite app! Homemade smoked bacon with garlic shrimp served on cornbread. And yes, I have the recipe! “coming soon”
As an Italian that makes bruschetta, I was impressed! Bruschetta topped with muzz, prosciutto, onions, peppers, fire roasted tomatoes, drizzled with a maple balsamic glaze. It was good enough to serve to my family at a holiday!
My drink of choice was a pina colada but the variety of local craft beer was very tempting! After chatting and getting to know the staff, who might I add, made you feel like family, we sat for dinner.
We started with a mixed green salad which had watermelon radish. I never even heard of this. It added beautiful color to the salad and had a sweetness to it with a hint of pepper. I’ll be adding this to a dish in the future.
Our main course was the Three Creeks Sampler platter; Tenderloin with Gulf Shrimp, Pan Fried Trout and Local Chicken on a bed of rice and vegetables. Fresh grilled sweet corn that didn’t need any butter or salt.
Just when I thought I couldn’t possibly fit anymore, we were whisked back to the deck for S’mores. The firepit was lit to toast our marshmallows and the graham crackers were homemade. I’m probably the only person in the world who doesn’t eat s’mores but I do make a mean toasted marshmallow, perfectly browned on all sides.
And what would a campfire be without having Smokey The Bear??? I loved seeing this sign on the wall! We need to bring Smokey back!
The next morning we started out with breakfast at Virginia BBQ & Pizza Co. Here is where you get your southern down home BBQ and traditional southern sides. Choose wood-smoked chicken, pork, and ribs. We were there early in the morning soI kept breakfast simple since I don’t normally eat a big breakfast.
I was amazed by the size of the smoker and I was told this is where they smoke everything for all the restaurants. From the salt to the ice, they are champions of the smoker!
I think I mentioned it but so worth it to say it again. Their bacon is handcut and smoked. It’s A-May-Zing! I asked for it crispy so you can get it exactly how you like it!
We then took a property tour and got to experience the spa and before we knew it, lunch was about to begin.
Located on the ski lodge deck, this is the perfect spot for a bite to eat before or after skiing. I don’t ski so I say it’s perfect for anytime. The indoor – outdoor seating gives you options and is complete with couches, chairs, end tables, torches and a fire pit.
This meal may have put me over the top and not what I expected from ski lodge food. Everything at Massanutten is homemade and fresh local ingredients are used. Each dish is created by the chefs and staff. The team work of ideas and creations don’t stop at the foods but also go into the drinks. Every single ingredients is thought about and they utilize the smoker to its full extent. On a side note, we have a small smoker at home. I have a list of everything I want to smoke. Massanutten even told me how to smoke ice!
We sat outside to enjoy the view. It was very hot that day but I love the heat so it was perfect for me.
I LOVE PRETZELS!
Chef started us with these homemade Bavarian Pretzels served with house-made Massanutten lager cheese sauce.
We had our own bartender who paired craft cocktails to go with each course. This was going to be a challenge because I love cocktails and normally I would suck them all down and go with it but I needed to keep my cool and professionalism “wink”. Our first drink of the afternoon was A Raspberry Lemonade, made with muddled raspberries, lemonade and Strange Monkey Gin. Yummy!
Chef then brought us Massanutten’s version of a Pu Pu Platter. The Mountain PuPu Platter with chicken salad stuffed peppers, jalapeño snake bites, house-made bacon in a mason jar, cheese, and mac ‘n’ cheese balls. The jalapeño snake bites got my taste buds dancing! They are grilled jalapeño, stuffed with cheddar cheese and Italian sausage, and wrapped in bacon.
Normally I could have stopped there but then there’s salad, self explanatory. The star for me was the house dressing and the muzz!
Our next craft cocktails was my absolute favorite and I will be serving this at our next party. Of course I first need to get my salt, pineapple, and ice smoked. This Smoked Pineapple Jalepeno Margarita was tonguegasmic! It has just enough spice, and the pineapple juice gave just enough sweetness, topped with the smoked flavor made you want more…and more…and more!
I’m a chili lover! Camp Stove Chili made with sirloin is a personal recipe of chef! You will eat the whole pot and most likely won’t want to share. I love the story behind the chili. Chef who hunts with the guys has a typical rivalry amongst each other. His dad, a typical father believes his food is better and it doesn’t matter that his son is a chef. During their chili cook-off, chef came out ahead and the guys, including his dad gave him the title of the best chili. I stand behind this 100%!
Did you think the craft cocktails were done? NOPE! A spin on the Arnold Palmer, the Bayou Zinger is made with sweet tea, a fresh squeezed lemon, Southern Comfort and a splash of Grand Marnier. This drink can be sucked right down very easily.
And just when you think you can’t possible eat another bite. This deliciousness comes out! I take three deep breaths and start encouraging myself. Smoked pork, grilled veggies, and chef’s version of chicken and dumplings (delete dumplings and add biscuits)! I somehow managed two helpings of the chicken and biscuits. I’m a trooper!
The last drink came out which was non-alcoholic. Basecamp creates craft non-alcoholic drinks so when families are there, they can enjoy great taste without getting buzzed.
Ok it’s surely over now! And then they present one of my all-time favorite desserts- Creme Brulee’!!!! You know this is my signature dessert when I go to parties and it’s served at every holiday. I had to
taste it eat the entire thing. I was so impressed at how creamy it was and tried to find out the secret but it was a no-go.
Massanutten takes normal foods and puts a spin on them to make your taste buds have a party! You will want to kiss the chef… oh yeah… we DID! Chef Chef Michael Ritenour and his staff truly are artists!!!
Truthfully to tell you about the food and drinks and to show you pictures just can’t get across the entire experience. It really goes so much farther than eating a meal. Each staff member makes sure you experience your food, your activity, or whatever it is your doing. You don’t visit Massanutten Resort you experience it. And don’t be surprised if you go there and decide to move and get a job there (It’s been done by many).