Last Updated on November 13, 2019 by Angie
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Helen's is a fine dining restaurant on the Seven Springs Ski Resort property with an award-winning wine list and classic dishes served up in a cozy and rustic chic atmosphere.
We've stayed at Seven Springs a number of times over the years and have eaten at nearly all of the restaurants, and we have to say, Helen's is by far the best option on the property. While most of the other restaurants feature things like bar food and buffets, Helen's is truly a standout and a restaurant that, if you picked it up and put it in Pittsburgh, we would gladly choose to patron.
A Great Ambiance and Wine List at Helen's
Helen's is located in a historic cabin-like house with lots of wood and floor to ceiling windows. The wood features and the small dining area make the whole space very intimate and cozy.
On my recent visit, I couldn't get a reservation but was lucky enough to snag a seat at the bar shortly after they opened for the evening.
Of course, I had to peruse the wine list as it has been awarded the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence for seven consecutive years. There are several dozen wines available by the glass, which we always appreciate. I started with an Oregon pinot noir and later in the meal moved to the Quilt cabernet sauvignon which was fantastic. The bottle list is quite extensive and is broken down by varietal and region, with bottles in every price range. I was excited to see one of my favorite wines on the menu, an affordable Argentinian malbec by Pulenta.
As you might expect for a restaurant that focuses on wine, the beer list seems like an afterthought. The cocktail menu, however, was seasonal and solid.
Crab Bisque at Helen's is a Must
My meal started with a complimentary amuse-bouche of tuna and seaweed salad with a light sesame flavor, followed by a miniature loaf of bread that was quite nice.
On the recommendation of the bartender, I ordered the crab bisque to start. The server poured the soup into the bowl tableside on top of the potatoes, crab meat, and a crispy fried potato slice sticking up dramatically in the middle. The soup was creamy and rich with huge chunks of sweet crab meat. We can definitely see why this dish is so popular!
For entrees, the options include typical chicken, fish, and beef dishes as well as scallops, lamb, and a rotating selection of weekly specials. I decided on a weekly special, a veal chop. The bartender asked how I wanted it prepared but I wasn't really sure. He related it to steak and said that if I typically ordered steak medium rare, he'd recommend I order the veal medium as the texture would be better.
I indeed ordered it medium and it was delightful. The meat was tender, slightly fatty, and juicy with a nice sear. A butternut squash risotto was creamy and just a touch sweet, while roasted tomatoes on top of the chop gave a bright, acidic element tamed by a little sweetness that was amazing. A demi-glace swooshed around the edges of the plate gave an extra boost of richness.
For dessert, I tried the chocolate blitz which was a dome of sweet chocolate mousse enrobed in a rich and intense chocolate ganache, with a contrasting caramel sauce on the plate. It was a fitting end to such a luxurious meal!
I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of the food, service, and experience at Helen's, especially considering I was just sitting at the bar. Anyone visiting Seven Springs looking for more than just bar food should definitely have a meal at Helen's. Just make sure you call well in advance for a reservation, especially during ski season!
Helen's is located at Seven Springs Mountain Resort at 777 Water Wheel Drive in Champion, PA. Reservations are required.
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