Two things that get our attention are free music and free food! We were invited to review City Springs’ new hot and trendy restaurant, The Select. To make a night of it, we tied it with City Green Live – City Springs’ new summer concert series – a Friday night “must-do” for music lovers.
This free concert series features local, as well as nationally known musicians, on select Friday nights from May until September. Just bring a blanket or a lawn chair. Food and drink are available on site or bring your own. Bands take the stage at 7:30 p.m. We arrived early and were pleasantly surprised to see the expansive space designed for spectators, with tables and seats set up (for purchase), while shaded swings and rocking chairs faced the stage.
After setting our own lawn chairs, we headed for what was to be a magnificent dinner at The Select, one of City Springs’ new restaurants, which boasts elegance and effervescence.
As you step into The Select you take note of its beautiful and inviting design and décor. Two dining room areas have tables of all sizes to accommodate couples or large groups. We were seated in the custom-designed atrium before two-story glass windows that can be opened to allow fresh air when the weather permits, appropriate since the view is of “The Green” where the concerts take place.
The menu is as lovely and impressive as the ambiance. Chef Matthew Rainey’s contemporary continental cuisine featuring a French influence and Mediterranean dishes popular in Spain, the French Riviera, and Italy are carefully designed to delight both taste and sight. Partner and General Manager David Green explained that the concept and name, The Select, was chosen to honor Le Select brasserie in Paris, France, where artists and literary giants such as Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Pablo Picasso once gathered in the 1920s.
In Parisian style, we ordered cocktails, a Junipero gin and tonic and a Bird of Paradise. We started with ahi tuna and three completely different and delicious salads: Golden Beet, Heirloom Tomato and Quinoa and Wheat Berries. For our entrée, we enjoyed the Pan Roasted Select Chicken: chanterelle, cambray onion, sunchoke, honey Provençal, black truffle gastrique; and cauliflower and butternut squash: mango chutney, black garlic, tahini, toasted coconut and cashews.
For dessert, we had a deliciously decadent strawberry shortcake like neither one of us has experienced before. We do not have enough space to describe all the fantastic flavors we were lucky enough to try, but each bite was as unique and delicious as the next.
The Select is open daily from 5 to 10 p.m. with a late-night menu from 10 p.m. to midnight. Brunch will be featured soon with live music. Concerned about parking for dinner and music? No problem. The City Springs underground garage offers two hours free and The Select can extend that to a total of four hours with validation.
We finished our feast and headed out with a glass of wine (open containers allowed) to enjoy the live music by Cosmic Charlie, a Grateful Dead tribute band from Athens, Ga. We were excited to see that the Green was packed with a diverse crowd, from young professionals with children to retirees. It was a perfect summer night, which we highly recommend.
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