Posts tagged ‘travel’
Sorry that this series of blog posts is taking so long to get done. Yes, we’ve been back from our honeymoon for 10 days…We moved into our new apartment last weekend and it’s been really busy around here. Maybe next trip won’t be “technology free” and these posts will be more timely. Or not.
After Philly, Brian and I headed to Delaware to check out the Winterthur Museum and Country Estate, Longwood Gardens and the Brandywine River Museum. We stopped in Wilmington with the hopes of finding something to do and somewhere to eat. Frankly, there didn’t seem to be much going on in downtown Wilmington, but the folks at the visitors center mentioned something about a brewery. Brian, beer lover that he is, decided that was where we should have dinner and, after getting lost driving around the city, we found Iron Hill Brewery located on the riverfront.
He hasn’t stopped talking about it since.
We started our meal with a sampler of 8 types of beer, the 6 house beers and two seasonals of our (Brian’s) choosing:
My husband, who is far more knowledgable about these things than I, thought the beer was really great. I actually liked most of them too, and only having to have a little of each was definitely the way to go for me. Sampling all the different kinds was a lot of fun. It’s possible I’m starting to like beer. Who woulda thought?
We also ordered an appetizer of sweet potato fries. Sweet potato fries aren’t usually on my radar, but they might be in the future. I think the picture speaks for itself. Amazing. I would’ve been content to skip the main course and just eat more fries.
I had a “healthy selection” crab cake with tomatoes, avocado, baby arugula, and roasted tomato-jalapeño vinaigrette:
You know you’d had a lifestyle change when you order things off the “healthy selections” menu not because it’s healthy but because it sounds more appetizing than the “normal selections”.
The food was really delicious, the portions sufficient and the atmosphere was fun. Brian suggested, before the meal was even over, that we forgo looking for other restaurants and just come back to Iron Hill for the remaining evenings of our trip. I declined, but it wouldn’t have been the worst thing ever. Iron Hill Brewery has several locations in Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Brian and I spent most of our time in Philly in the Old City. We did a ton of walking in that area alone. However, I couldn’t quite resist making the hike to Center City to see Reading Terminal Market. How could I forgo checking out “the best, freshest and liveliest public market since 1893”?
In short, it was everything I hoped it would be. Tons of vendors, amazing looking fresh food, variety, ethnic cuisine. I very nearly decided to move to Philadelphia for the market alone. It was a good thing we didn’t have a cooler with us or a fridge in our hotel because I would’ve spent a fortune on food. I’ll stop rambling and just get to the photos, because they express my feelings much better:
Reading Terminal Market: definitely a Philadelphia foodie must see.
Posting’s been thin lately, but I have a good excuse (I think). My sister and I were on vacation in Quebec City.
If you’ve never been (and we hadn’t), I highly suggest you go. We had a wonderful time shopping, going to the Musée National des Beaux Arts du Québec, walking through The National Battlefields Park, and, of course, eating.
I’m sure Quebec isn’t the end all, be all of fine cusine, but I took my mini-vacation seriously and ate whatever I wanted, not necesarily in terms of quanity-we stuck to 3 meals a day, and relatively cheap ones because we’re like that- but I ordered whatever I felt like off the menu, vegetarian or not. We were only there for 3 days and it was vacation after all. Everything we ate was delicious (who doesn’t love crepes?), and despite our lack of ability to speak French, the waitstaff in all the restaurants we tried were accomodating and helpful.
We finished up our wonderful trip to Canada by stopping at the Empire Grill in Skowhegan, Maine on our way home. For those unfamiliar with the novel Empire Falls by Richard Russo, the Empire Grill is the restaurant owned by the main character. The Empire Grill in Skowhegan was used as the site for the filming of the HBO miniseries based on the book which starred Ed Harris, Helen Hunt, Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Paul Newman, after which time the restaurant kept the Empire Grill name. Empire Falls is one of my absolute favorite books of all time, so stopping at the Grill was a “must do”. The restaurant far exceeded my expectations. The portions were huge (I think they served my sister an entire fish with her fish and chips), the prices reasonable and the food delicious. Even if you don’t care about Empire Falls (though you really, really should!), the Empire Grill is the perfect place to eat if you ever find yourself in Skowhegan.
So, I had a brief debate with myself this evening about whether or not it was worth staying up to watch the season premiere of Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations on the Travel Channel. I made the right choice.
I began to fall in love with Anthony Bourdain over the past few weeks (apologies to my Man), as Travel Channel was showing about every episode in succession to prepare for the new season. Well, I’m hooked. Who can resist a show that refers to matadors as “teen idols…Zac Efron with a sword” or features oyster flavored alcohol that’s apparently “like baby food that gets you slowly drunk”? Moreover, it was worth giving up an hour of my usual sleep schedule to watch Tony thrown onto a mat by a professional wrestler. Even more so, this episode made me want to go to Mexico, mostly to eat. Everything looked tasty (except maybe the oyster-y alcohol) and I’m always impressed by Bourdain’s seemingly genuine surprise at liking everything he tries. One might think that at this point he’d realize he likes everything, but he always tries it and he’s always impressed.
Despite his frequent digs at my favorite Food Network shows and stars, I love Bourdain’s perspective and the places the show goes. I love the people he meets, I always learn something worth knowing and now I can add Mexico to my list of places I want to visit.
Now, I just have to decide if I’m going to watch No Reservations or Chopped on Monday evenings and if I can really afford to stay awake until 11 on school nights.
Next week No Reservations goes to Venice. How can I say no?
I really must start reading Kitchen Confidential.