24 January 2015

2014 OHIO Columbus 2 - More Seasons Eatings

Last February we ate here for the first time on Kathy's birthday and could not make another trip so nearby without stopping again. It did not disappoint. We had a round of their classic Bloody Marys and Ramos gin fizzes to start. Then amongst us we gobbled down spinach salad with goat cheese and candied almonds, clam chowder with chorizo "dust," fish-and-chips, huge peel and eat gulf shrimp with cheesy grits, various kinds of fresh oysters on the half-shell, and Cuban sandwiches.

Dessert was their delish brown sugar pie. The waiter overheard our comments about how wonderful it was. A few minutes later the chef came out with a printed copy of the recipe for us and explained in detail how to make the pie. I'll bet you never had that happen before!!!
At the Pearl you don't even mind getting the bill. It comes out randomly slipped between the pages of a book. You can even leave a little note about the meal hidden somewhere within its pages. This is a first class place for food AND service and can't be missed if you are ever in Columbus, Ohio.

After that huge meal we needed to walk it off. We motored to the Columbus Zoo to see the annual holiday Wildlights show. They display four million (yes, that is the correct number) mini lights throughout the zoo. It was so beautiful, especially by the reflecting pond. Many different colors and light patterns going off and on.
We were a bit disappointed at first because we expected to see the zoo animals under the shadow of night. But, alas, they were all sleeping except a few gazelles and one lone reindeer. Apparently the zoo does not want to interrupt the animals' normal sleeping patterns by artificially waking them up during the light show. That's understandable. Once we realized it was more about the lights (and a fundraiser), we were ok with it. I really did want to see the polar bears though. Dang!
After a leisurely stroll, it was back to home. We had a nightcap and played with Jip and her new smiley teeth ball. Too funny!
On Saturday, we woke up to mimosas and more BLTs. Still great the second time around. We laid around all day, mostly catching up on family news. The guys figured out how to hook the computer up with the TV, so we could show our Europe trip slide show on the big screen. 

Dinner was at Hinkley's in Marysville. This restaurant had been closed for a few years, but recently reopened after some renovation. It was as good as we remembered. Here we munched on sweet potato bisque, spinach salad, pumpkin ravioli, seared salmon, gulf shrimp over quinoa, and perfectly cooked steak. We had Madagascar vanilla bean creme brûlée (served warm with a light sugar crust on top - umm, my fave) and berry crisps for dessert.

The next day we returned home. All in all we ate and drank our way through the weekend and had a warm and wonderful visit with J&K.

New Years Eve was at our house. It was a family affair and special guests were my Uncle and Aunt from France (whom we had visited in October). Joining them was our cousin from Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania. It was a treat as we rarely get to see him. Also, K&J (along with some friends from Chelsea, Michigan) made a one day       trip to our house just for New Years Eve festivities.

Aunt started the appetizers with a homemade liver paté (how very French of her). I'm not a meat-eater, but everyone else thought it was fabulous. We also had a 10+ pound honey baked ham, Mike's favorite Bushes market baked beans (not the canned Bushes), potato salad, deviled eggs, homemade guacamole, dips and chips, and olives (a holiday must for our family). In the end, it seemed more like a holiday picnic. The sweets included three fabulous gelato flavors--tiramisu, berry swirl, and limoncello.

The evening was topped off with a glass of champagne for all and a grand show of fireworks provided by the City of Kalamazoo. They are launched from a nearby rooftop parking deck. We have a wonderful view from our balcony and the street below.

Happy 2015 New Year to all and thanks for checking our blog!
Mike & Deb

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