5790 University Parkway, Winston-Salem, NC 27105
- Breakfast: Monday – Friday, 6 – 10 am; Saturday and Sunday, 7 – 11 am
- Lunch: Tuesday – Friday, 11 am – 2 pm
- Dinner: Tuesday – Thursday: 5 – 10 pm; Friday and Saturday, 5 – 11 pm
When you can combine good food with a great cause, that’s the ultimate in fine dining. When I was asked to eat at the Providence Restaurant, I was excited. When I learned that Providence Restaurant is designed to give back to the community, I was even more excited. Then, when I sampled the food, well… two words for you, my friends: Food. Coma.
But first things first… Providence Restaurant is attached to the DoubleTree by Hilton on University. It’s just five minutes from downtown, and the décor is beautiful. Comfortable chairs in a sophisticated environment and an ambiance that screams “fine dining!” On the back wall, the story of Providence Restaurant is told, along with an acknowledgment to their benefactors. What makes this restaurant unique is that all the profits support the Second Harvest Food Bank’s Triad Community Kitchen Culinary Training Program. Also, the top 20% of the program’s students have the opportunity for two-year apprenticeship experience at Providence Restaurant. I already loved the concept; then I fell in love with the food.
Luck was on our side; their new menu had just been released, and we were among the first to try Spicy Watermelon Wings. This spicy barbecue sauce is made from fresh watermelon, jalapenos, and corn chip crumble. We could have easily made a meal of these wings, but we also had Gnocchi. The chefs have taken the simple potato dumpling and jazzed it up with some Southern favorites – baby heirloom carrots, black-eyed peas – and then added some spicy Italian sausage and garlic for a dish that is the definition of comfort food.
For our salad, we had a Grilled Caesar Salad, which was a first for all of us. Romaine lettuce was grilled and topped with parmesan cheese, croutons, tomatoes, and lemon, and drizzled with a wonderful balsamic glaze. This is a slightly smoky tasting salad that works beautifully with the spicy tang of the dressing. We also ordered a Fareshare Farm Salad. Local baby greens were paired with cucumbers and marinated tomatoes. We sampled two dressings – a homemade ranch and a miso ginger. They were both excellent, but being partial to ginger, I loved the miso ginger. There was a lemony accent to the flavor that balanced it perfectly.
Bellies were already getting full when the entrees arrived, but we tucked in and persevered. We sampled three entrees that evening… First, Shrimp and Grits. Grits are an important part of our heritage, and these would make any Southerner proud. Thick, cheesy, rich, and creamy, the grits are topped with fresh shrimp and Andouille sausage. A wonderful combination! Next, we sampled Cheshire Pork Scallopini. The pork was tender and flavorful after being marinated in brandy and served over farro with wild mushrooms. The dish was accompanied by grilled fennel topped with pickled radishes. Amazing. Finally, we had Sautéed Joyce Farms Chicken Breast, which was served on top of asparagus risotto. Oh. My. With a little lemon, basil, and feta cheese, this was a dish you would dream about on a diet.
Finally, dessert. I wasn’t sure where we were going to fit anything else, but when you see Pimento Cheese Ice Cream with Texas Pete Pork Rinds on the dessert menu, you can’t let that pass you by without a sample. I admit, I was hesitant. As much as I love food, I couldn’t imagine what this was going to taste like, but we were all very pleasantly surprised. It was quite a tasty concoction and one I would definitely order again! We also sampled a something a little more tame – the Rhubarb Galette. If you aren’t a huge fan of sweets, this is the dessert for you. It’s not too sweet, but a sweet enough way to end a meal. Though it’s made from rhubarb, the dessert was reminiscent of grandma’s apple butter. The star anise infused sorghum syrup gave it the perfect finish.
We are ready to go back! My husband is ready to tackle that breakfast menu, and I think Providence is going to be a great place to go the next time my girlfriends and I have lunch! Make plans to visit yourself, and be sure to tell them that Rosey sent you!
- Bar: Yes
- Average Entree Cost: $7 – 10 for breakfast; $10 – 15 for lunch; $15 – 25 for dinner
- General location — University Parkway beside the Double Tree Hotel