Printed with the Permission of the Alpine Avalanche.
We stopped at the Bar Saint George at Hotel Saint George in Marfa the other day for lunch, and I have to say it was a very pleasant dining experience.
We’d been inside the beautiful new hotel once before, meandering around the Marfa Book Company bookstore when we had time to kill before a gathering at the Crowley Theater just down the street.
The hotel stands on the 1886 site of the original Hotel Saint George, and the new hotel’s lobby incorporates many of the materials from the original construction. The old brick and marble repurposed into modern décor melded with the Marfa Minimalism. The place feels like it has always been there, but actually opened its doors this past spring.
Entering the front doors, Marfa Book Company bookstore is to the right, LaVenture Restaurant is straight ahead, and Bar Saint George is to the left. LaVenture is open for dinner, and reservations are necessary for the fine dining experience. Bar Saint George serves breakfast and lunch, as well as fresh pastries, juices and coffee drinks, in addition to being a full-service bar open seven days a week. Happy hour starts at 4 p.m.
When we arrived shortly before noon, there were two patrons having lunch at the bar, and by the time we left about an hour later, every table was filled. The upholstered chairs in the dining area of the bar gave just the right amount of cushion to make you want to sit back and stay for a while.
My husband ordered the lunch special, a French Dip with French fries, and out of curiosity, I ordered the Warm Lentil Salad, a salad with warm lentils and roasted vegetables served on a bed of delicate greens with a preserved lemon yogurt sauce. The salad was unique and flavorful, and I would certainly order it again.
His sandwich was a fresh-baked, toasted baguette filled with tender, sliced prime rib, grilled onions and crème fraiche with au jus on the side for dipping. French fries with herbs and fresh grated parmesan completed the chef’s special of the day. He thinks the bread was house-made and sourdough. It was excellent.
Everything was just right… our server was attentive, the atmosphere was comfortable, and the food was top-notch. I look forward to dining at LaVenture.
For New Year’s Eve, Hotel Saint George will host a party with music by Butch Hancock, Jimmie Dale Gilmore with Rory Hancock and Colin Gilmore with special guests The Cactus Blossoms and The Mastersons. Doors open at 7 p.m. with the show beginning at 8 p.m.
For more information about dining, hotel accommodations or the New Year’s Eve festivities, call (432) 729-3700 or visit http://www.marfasaintgeorge.com
French Dip Sandwich
(inspired by Bar Saint George and adapted from Ree Drummond)
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
2 tablespoons black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground thyme
1 whole boneless ribeye loin (4-5 pounds, and sirloin can also be used)
2 whole large onions, thinly sliced
5 cloves minced garlic
1 whole packet French onion soup mix (dry – *see below for homemade substitution for the packaged mix)
1 can beef Consomme (more delicate flavor than beef broth)
1 cup beef broth or beef stock
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1 cup water
Whole crusty bread, split and toasted
Preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Tie the piece of meat tightly with a couple of pieces of kitchen twine and rub the salt, pepper, oregano and thyme over the entire piece of meat. Place the beef on a roasting rack in a roasting pan and roast it to medium-rare, about 20 to 25 minutes, until it’s 125 degrees on a meat thermometer. Place the meat on a cutting board and cover it with foil to let it rest.
Place the roasting pan on a stovetop burner over medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic and stir them around until they are soft and golden, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle in the soup mix, then pour in the consomme, broth, Worcestershire, soy, and water. Bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add more water if it starts to evaporate too much. Pour the liquid through a fine mesh strainer and reserve both the liquid and the onions.
Slice beef very thin. Pile meat and onions on rolls, then serve with dishes of jus.
*Homemade Onion Soup Mix
1/3 cup dried onion flakes
2 tablespoons beef bouillon granules or 2 tablespoons Organic Better than Beef Bouillon
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon parsley flakes
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon celery seed
1/8 teaspoon paprika
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon turmeric
Thoroughly mix all ingredients together and use in place of one packet of dry onion soup mix.