On Friday night, we had a simple cheese and fruit dinner. I laid out some Pinot Grigio salami with Comte, smoked Gouda and Belletoile (one of my favorite triple cremes) cheeses on one board, a loaf of Tuscan bread on another and a couple of Pink Lady apples on a third. To this, I added a Tarte d'Alsace from Trader Joe's and some deviled eggs with capers and ham. Voila! Dinner!
Saturday morning, I decided to start our O is for Olfactory date with vanilla coffee, freshly-squeezed tangerine juice ( I love my vintage juicer!) and gorilla bread, Paula Deen's decadent take on monkey bread, all redolent with the cinnamon-y, nutty aroma I knew would carry up to the bedroom. The recipe can be found here http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/gorilla-bread-recipe/index.html. It was a hit, with J telling me it was the best thing she ever ate in her life and saying, "This is a food group all on its own and it is above all other food groups." Thanks, Paula! It was really amazing and we ate far too much of it over the course of the weekend!
In the midst of prowling around town on our date, we stopped for a snack at 87 West 2, a newish wine bar we hadn't yet tried but had passed several times and were intrigued by. It had a lovely interior and, best of all for the sunny, gorgeous day, the windows were opened wide to the world. We settled into a cozy seating nook by one of the open windows and were promptly greeted. The ice water had a slice of cucumber rather than lemon, a touch I especially appreciate. I've only had the pleasure at one other restaurant and think it's particularly refreshing. We opted to share the chorizo and chevre hanky pankys, little tea sandwiches that were quite tasty. I'd been rooting for the fondue, but I thought these were a decent second choice and I will never refuse J when she is actually voluntarily suggesting a chorizo dish. She loved them, so I may make a chorizo gal out of her yet! With my snack, I enjoyed a lovely green glass of Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling, which J described fairly accurately as smelling "like grapes and grape vines, all mixed together." It was refreshing and spring-y, making me want to go morel-hunting in my mom's woods. J, of course, had a beer. After our snack, we popped into Rocky Mountain Chocolate for a couple of chocolate-dipped strawberries. I was poised on the brink of ordering a caramel instead, but I'm glad I chose the strawberry because the ratio of chocolate to berry was perfect and the chocolate stayed put on the berry rather than sliding off and doing its own thing, leaving a naked berry.
The other notable meal over the weekend was the wine-braised roast with onions I served Sunday night with baked potatoes and baby vegetables. The recipe was Nigella's and can be found here http://www.nigella.com/recipe/recipe_detail.aspx?rid=11953. We'd scored the roast at the farmer's market Saturday and it was fantastic! It also made for a very good Monday lunch, on leftover Tuscan bread with mayonnaise.