President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Dr. Jill Biden, former presidents, politicians, dignitaries, friends and family gathered at the Presidential Inaugural Luncheon, which was held in Statuary Hall on inauguration day at the US Capitol building on January 21, 2013 in Washington D.C.
Senator Charles Schumer was appointed the Chairman of the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies and acted as the Master of Ceremonies at the Inaugural Luncheon. As very eloquently put by the Senator, they were there for the food. And the food was very possibly the best meals eaten that day in the nation!
While the presidential inauguration itself had a theme, “Faith in America’s Future,” featured on the Inaugural Luncheon menu were delicacies from specific American regions which celebrated American cuisine, such as Steamed Lobster from New England, Grilled Bison from the Great Plains and Hudson Valley Apple Pie.
The First Course included Steamed Lobster with New England Clam Chowder Sauce, Lobster tails, New England clam chowder, Sauteed spinach and Sweet potato hay.
Second Course featured Hickory Grilled Bison with Red Potato, Horseradish Cake and Wild Huckleberry Reduction, Butternut squash puree, Baby golden beets and green beans, Red potato horseradish cake, Strawberry Preserve and red cabbage and Wild Huckleberry Reduction.
The meal finished off with a Third Course of Hudson Valley Apple Pie with Sour Cream Ice Cream, Aged Cheese and Honey, Pie dough, Cinnamon crumble, Apples, Sour Cream Ice Cream, Maple Caramel Sauce, Garnish and Artisan Cheeses.
To accompany the meal were Tierce Finger Lakes Dry Riesling 2010, Korbel Natural, Special Inaugural Cuvée Champagne from California and Bedell Cellars Merlot 2009.
The menu was reportedly over three thousand calories per person, all items consumed – but who was counting calories?
Senator Schumer jokingly said that the meal was chosen by the spouses of a bipartisan group of House and Senate leaders so that “no one party can be blamed if they don't like the meal.” By the way, the catering company was Design Cuisine.
Barack and Michelle Obama sat with Vice President Joe Biden and wife Dr. Jill Biden at one side and Speaker of the House John Boehner and his wife Deborah Gunlack on the other.
The presidential and vice presidential couples were presented with hand-cut and etched crystal vases created by Lenox, with the Obamas received one with an etching of the White House, while the Bidens got the one with the Capitol Building.
For the occasion, a painting of Niagara Falls by artist Ferdinand Richardt decorated the Hall as a backdrop.
Table settings included tablecloths with turquoise and olive spots on a white background, white plates with turquoise and silver borders, silver flatware and peach colored centerpieces. Luncheon Programs were placed at each place setting and each guest was given a goodie bag with chocolates to take as a memento.
Enjoy the slideshow of the Inaugural Luncheon for President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.