Sunday, November 16, 2008

Anniversary Weekend!!

Tomorrow is going to be my 7th wedding anniversary. It doesn't seem that long, but in ways it seems like forever. I mean, thinking about my life and how comfortable I am with my situation and my relationship, it's hard to think about "before us". I've already explained the start of our relationship, but if you need a refresher, here is the link for my Growing Love!

Anyway, last year was the only year that I actually took part in planning anything for this special ocassion. I'm horrible at the romance stuff... I mean just plain awful! Thank goodness Chef Hubby is Mr. Romance to the rescue! He had it all planned.

We headed out about 6:00pm with the kids at my mom's house watching "Kung Fu Panda", and sure as heck, not minding us leaving. He had informed me that we had reservations at 8:00 in Providence, RI, about 30 minutes away, and that I needed to pack an extra set of clothes to change into in the morning... Yes! It's an overnight!!! heheWestin in Providence (yes, Chef Hubby is also a hotel snob!) and man, oh man, it was nice!! I mean, seriously... you needed to use the room card to activate the freaking elevators

Anyway, we had time to check out the price list for the mini bar and laugh, before heading out to dinner. Can you believe that a 2oz can of "homemade chocolate chip cookies" was $7.50?! I mean, what kind of flour did they use?!

We caught a cab at the taxi stand in front of the hotel and headed to XO Steakhouse.. OMG!! We walked and were actually greated by the Chef de Cuisine Benjamin Lloyd. How cool is that? He was checking something on the computer and headed back into the kitchen. We were seated by an adorable hostess and were greeted shortly after by our waiter, Johnny. The feel of the restaurant was modern, sophisticated, and very comfortable. From the moment we were seated and scanned the menu, we knew we were in for something amazing

We started the evening with some water and a martini (I don't do those manly ones though... I had Flirting with Style... hehe) I don't remember which one Chef Hubby chose. We continued to scan the menu trying to figure out the perfect plan. It was a difficult choice, there were so many options that we wanted to try!! When Johnny returned, Chef Hubby asked if they did tasting menus. The reply was a quick, "Of course, how many courses would you like". SWEET!! We had the option of picking our items or having the chef choose... the latter is always the way to go!! We actually ended up tasting 8 different dishes, most of which were not even included on the menu.

I have to say, I did not have a single complaint for ANY of the dishes! Thank you Chef Benjamin and Johnny for an absolutely amazing experience!! The only bummer came between the entree and the dessert. The Chef came to our table and asked how our meal was, and then informed us that at the end of service next Saturday, they would be closing to implement an entirely new concept. Initially, it was a serious let down! I saw a TON of dishes I wanted to try and would never get the chance, but then thought, hey if the quality stays this superior, I can't wait to try a French tasting menu starting on December 1st!!

We ended up going home with a doggy bag because although we were served two incredible desserts, a Creme Brulee Trio and a Hot Molten Chocolate Cake with Coconut Ice Cream, we couldn't leave without sampling the Bread Pudding with Maple Ice Cream. That was sooo yummy later in the evening... hehelol! I know, I can't believe I was hungry still!! We got ready and headed to the Concierge in the Lobby to find a place for some good food. Being only 8:50am we were informed that most spots were not open until 10... BUT there was a little place about a 10 minute walk away, if we were ok with that. Heck yeah, bring it on!

It was a beautifully quiet walk in the city that morning. The air was crisp but clean and all of the storefronts seemed so calm and welcoming without the bustle of midday. We took a wrong turn but eventually found the spot, DownCity.

Upon, entering we grabbed seats at the bar and once again scanned the menu. It was so hard to choose. Why do they make it so difficult?! I ended up asking the bartender what her favorite option was. I hesitated a moment before taking opinion, because as any good employee should, she tossed out without hesitation, the priciest item on the menu... the Downcity’s Uptown Crab Cakes Benedict, two poached eggs with hollandaise on a bolo over crab cakes and sweet potato homefries. It was actually the choice I was leaning towards. Chef Hubby opted for the Our Slow Braised Corned Beef Brisket Hash, served with 2 eggs, toast, and sweet potato homefries. We also ordered a Blueberry Banana Sour Cream Muffin and some coffee.



Yes, they were as yummy as they look!! Oh and as huge!! Neither of us came close to cleaning the plate, but it was fun trying... lol! My clam cakes were perfect, moist and sweet, but not soggy. OMG!! Even the hollandaise is amazing, nice and light and creamy... mmm!

Chef Hubby's Corned Beef hash included potatoes and carrots and he thought it was phenomenal! Well, we finished what we could. I grabbed a bag for my muffin to bring home to my mom... I knew she'd love it! and we headed back to hotel to get the car and head home... to reality. Oh well, we knew it couldn't last forever, but I can't wait to get back!!

Have you gone anywhere special lately?

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