Tag Archives: dinner out

Last Dinner Out


The weather at Cannon Beach was absolutely beautiful. And walking on the beach barefoot for a few hours felt really nice.

It’s also a fantastic workout. Just walking for a few hours, I felt it in my calves and ankles. It felt really good.

Growing up, my family used to drive from Seattle south to the Oregon Coast for our vacations almost every year. I have a lot of really happy memories about the beach and as a kid spent hours walking the beach by myself, reading in the sand, and playing with cousins.

When we were at the Coast, I saw a few people running the beach. I’ve never tried running on the beach. One time I ran up a sand dune and injured my Achilles heel! That was not good. 😦 But the one thing I noticed was that the runners were all running down right at the water line. I think the sand is more stable there and I bet running on the beach is much easier on the joints.

QUESTION: Have you ever run on the beach? What did you think?

After spending the day in Cannon Beach, we drove back to Portland to go to dinner for the last time as a group before the family went home. I made reservations for Cafe Castagna because I had enjoyed the food so much last time I was there.

I did not have a great experience at Cafe Castagna Saturday night–which was really disappointing. First, they gave away our dinner reservations. I was pretty upset about that. The hostess was apologetic but it was still ridiculous. I had called ahead and said we were running about 10 minutes late and to please hold the table. Yea, they didn’t hold the table. 😦 We only had to wait about 10 more minutes to get a table but still, it was a big mistake.

Next, the waitress we had was AWFUL. She had the personality of a wet blanket, didn’t crack a smile the entire time, was impossible to flag down and just downright rude. I was sooo embarrassed. I had made the reservations because I loved the food last time I was there. After dinner I called and spoke to the owner of the restaurant to complain. She was really nice and apologetic and said she’d send Michael and I gift certificate. I’m not too happy about the experience and even with a gift certificate, it might be awhile before I go back.

Other than that, the food was really excellent. Everyone enjoyed their meals. I ordered the Hungarian Goulash with Polenta and carrots. I’d been craving it since the last time I was there. It was just as delicious this time!

I nursed one vodka tonic the entire evening. I just wasn’t into eating out anymore. I’m grateful for the wonderful dinners we had and the fun experiences, but I was just burned out on restaurants and drinking–and food honestly! It will be really nice to get back to normal….

I skipped dessert. Like I said, I was sort of sick of food at this point. I watched Jeremy eat his dessert instead. 🙂 He ordered the espresso with a scoop of ice cream in it. He said it was decadent and good.

QUESTION: Have you ever called to complain about poor service or bad food at a restaurant?

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Wine, Food and More Wine


On Friday after the hike, we took our guests into downtown Hood River to do some wine tasting. We were running short on time so we went to my favorite: Quenett and then to Naked Winery. I wrote about both wineries last month when we went there for our anniversary. Michael’s family had a great time! They loved wine tasting and both places have some good wine.

Michael and I love Quenett Winery and we ALWAYS go there when we visit Hood River. Not only that, we always leave with at least 1 bottle of wine, if not two. So we decided to sign up for their “Platinum Club”. It gets us into the twice annual parties, free tastings, and a big discount on wine. It feels so “grown up” to be part of a wine club! And we did it together. Awwww…..

We took them to the Naked Winery because it’s a fun tasting room and lots of wines to taste. They had a great time! We were short on time so we didn’t spend a lot of time in Hood River. We had dinner reservations at Jake’s Grill in Portland. We drove home to change and head downtown. The pictures from Jake’s didn’t turn out great because it’s pretty dark in there. It’s a classy restaurant with mood lighting.

Even though I had over-indulged in Hood River wine tasting, I order one glass of Pinot Noir to go with my steak dinner.

Michael ordered their calamari because it’s the best in town. Again, since there were so many of us, I wasn’t worried about overeating. I had a few bites of the calamari and waited for dinner.

I ordered the Top Sirloin Bordelaise. It came with Yukon Gold Potatoes, Asparagus and Dungeness Crab. My steak was a little overdone but the meal was delicious!

Michael talked me into splitting dessert. We ordered the cheesecake that came with a raspberry sauce, fresh raspberries and bluesberries. It was amazing! The best part: the cheesecake had a creme brulee topping! It was fantastic.

I sort of regret splitting the cheesecake with Michael because I wanted it all to myself. 😉

Slippery Slope


Last night was Eating Out Adventure #2. I don’t think I did as well as the previous night….Sigh….

I got home from work and Michael’s stepsister and her boyfriend had arrived from Texas and we all went out to Apizza Scholls for dinner (all 7 of us).

The boys started with beer. Us girls got a bottle of white wine and split that. I ended up having two glasses of wine with dinner.

We started with Caesar Salads (their Caesars are pretty fantastic!).

I shared Jeremy’s salad and only had a little bit. We ordered three pizzas (which we didn’t need because they are all huge). A “Margo’rita” , their Margherita: tomato sauce, mozzarella (whole milk & fresh), pecorino romano, fresh garlic, extra virgin olive oil, fresh basil; a sausage and peppers pizza; and a “pig and pineapple.”

My favorite is the “pig and pineapple” (it has onions on it too).

Not only are the pizzas huge, the slices are pretty big. I had 1 slice of the “Margherita” and 1.5 slices of the “Pig and Pineapple.” Have I mentioned that pizza was always my “trigger food” I tried to avoid? Yeah I usually can’t stop eating it. 😦

But I wasn’t alone in eating too much pizza…Everyone else indulged too.

Apizza Scholls is one of the best pizza joints in Portland. It’s Michael’s favorite and it’s his father’s favorite. It’s always on the list of “Things to Do” when he visits Portland. After the Pizza Orgy, we headed next door to Bar of the Gods. I skipped having anything to drink there because I knew we’d be going to another bar later.

After hanging out with the whole family for a bit, Michael dropped the parents off and us “kids” went to the Horsebrass Pub for a few beers. I ordered a Walking Man IPA–a really good beer made in Washington.

The Horsebrass is a really cool pub. Lots of beers from all over the world, traditional English Pub food (like fish and chips) and tons of dart boards. I’ve spent many evenings in this pub because it’s such a cool place (and it was close to my old apartment).

We convinced the sister’s boyfriend to order a “Fred” beer–a super strong beer (10% alcohol!) and then we played a round of darts before calling it a night.

I know I indulged– and indulged in some not healthy things either. 😦 I’m trying not to beat myself up about it. It’s nice to splurge once in awhile. I will admit I am feeling a bit overwhelmed about all the eating out! It’s so much temptation…. 😦

This morning I got up and went to the gym for a mediocre workout. I didn’t have a ton of time to work out since we had houseguests and I thought it was rude. I hit the stair-master for about 35 minutes, the elliptical for a few minutes and then did a bunch of weights and stretching.

Gym Stats:

Time: 54:08

Calories Burned: 440

Burned off Pizza Slices: Maybe a little bit

HAPPY FRIDAY!

Eating Out Landmines


Last night marked Eating Out #1 for this week. Michael and I met his dad and step-mom at Henry’s 12th Street Tavern for dinner.

Michael’s dad is a Beer Expert (seriously, that’s his job). He recommended I try the Bridgeport IPA, so that’s what I ordered. It was a nice, light IPA and I liked it a lot.

Bridgeport IPA

Landmine #1: Appetizers

Michael’s dad ordered Henry’s famous onion rings as the appetizer. Check this temptation out:

I was famished and the onion rings ARE pretty tasty….I ate two only. And I made sure that I ate two from the top because they were smaller!

Could you resist those?

Landmine #2 – Entree

The next dilemma was what to order as an entree. After weighing the pros and cons of the two entrees I wanted, I decided on the Halibut. It was a sea salt and pepper crusted halibut with a balsamic vinaigrette glaze.

It came with an arugula and tomato salad and a fried potato cake. The potato cake was exceptional. For some reason in my brain I thought the potato cake would be less calories than their amazing mashed potatoes…Not sure now. 🙂

My entree was okay. I think I’ve discovered that halibut is not my favorite fish. It’s a bit on the dry side. I’d rather eat a trout or salmon. I ate half of my halibut and saved the other half for lunch.

We chatted about Reach the Beach and I told them about Hood to Coast coming up. Michael’s dad said “God gave me a certain number of heart beats in my lifetime and I’m not going to waste them running!” He said it was a quote from an astronaut and it made me chuckle. 🙂

Landmine #3 – Dessert

After dinner at Henry’s we all walked a few blocks in the Pearl District to Cupcake Jones. I’ve walked by Cupcake Jones a million times and never gone in. Last night I finally did.

There were many choices: chocolate, vanilla, marionberry cobbler, German chocolate cake and other options for cupcakes. There were also the large cupcakes or the mini cupcakes. Michael’s dad got the German chocolate:

There was also an option for a “Frosting Shot”? Seriously! A cup of just the frosting!!! I was floored.

Dessert is always the hard part for me. I have zero willpower when faced with something like this:

At first I was going to get the 1 bite mini cupcake but Michael talked me into splitting a big sized cupcake with him. We got the chocolate.

It was gooooood. I loved the frosting. I think it was a cream cheese frosting.

We left Cupcake Jones and strolled passed the Ben and Jerry’s (Michael wanted to stop for ice cream but I held strong :)).

We took them to Powell’s City of Books and then called it a night. It was a really nice evening and I enjoy spending time with Michael’s family. The weather was perfect too.

Conclusion

I have no idea if I was smart with my food last night. I feel like I made some good choices and a few bad choices (2 beers + a cupcake!).