Posts Tagged ‘restaurants’

Happy Anniversary!

January 27, 2011 1 comment

Well, it was yesterday. Tim and I have been married for three years!

Last year we went to the Gandy Dancer for our anniversary, and this year we headed out to the Grange. We’ll have to find a “G” restaurant again next year too:)

My apologies in advance for the iPhone pictures, it’s all I have and the lighting is a little low there.

Awesome paper flowers!

Our waitress said that these are handmade by a cousin of the head chef. Such a good idea for the winter when fresh flowers are much more expensive.

Two ways to win me over? Serve different types of bread each time I come in and put the butter in adorable little glasses.

Chorizo sausage, blue cheese, dates
These are amazing. I had them at the first Slow Food meet-up I went to and I was ridiculously skeptical at first, since I had never had chorizo, blue cheese, or dates, even separately, let alone all snuggled up together on a little skewer. One of the things I love about this place is that it surprises me with flavors I wouldn’t think I would like. It’s an odd mix of spicy, cheesy, and sweet, but it pairs together very well.

Tim got the Michigan white bean soup, with ham hocks and fried onions. I had a taste of that (and also convinced him to try a chorizo skewer) which was very yummy. It was a little bit like grown up pork and beans. Also, Tim thought that a date was a nut. No joke.

Duroc pork tenderloin, heirloom polenta, greens, and a balsamic dressing
I don’t think I said this earlier, but this meal was the first meat I’d had since last Friday. I’m of the opinion that I chose wisely. Grange tries to source as much of their ingredients locally as possible. Much better than any pork tenderloin I had tried to make, that’s for sure. This was also my first experience with polenta, which is appropriate since the Take Home Chef episode I watched before dinner had polenta in it. …and you can’t go wrong with braised greens!

Filet, Heirloom Polenta, Braised Greens
I had every intention of ordering this, but then Tim decided on it… so I chose the pork. I tried a bite of it, and it was really good (and cooked the way he asked), but I think I made the better choice.

Lemon cake pudding, Calder’s Vanilla Ice Cream
Awesome. I love anything vaguely resembling lemon bars and lemon filling. This was not really a mousse, it had some substance to it and a bit of a give when you touched it, but it was not too solid. A little more pudding-like at the bottom. The ice cream was a nice side, too, and exactly the right amount for someone lactose-ly challenged such as myself.

Coffee Profiteroles, Calder’s Vanilla Ice Cream
Alright, so we had to ask our waitress and then Google it to figure out what the heck a profiterole is. It’s a cream puff. A yummy one 🙂

In the end, it was a long yet very productive anniversary day.
5:15am- wake up
5:45 to 6:30am – on the bike trainer (with Chef Curtis Stone!)
6:30 to 7am – food for the day: Tim’s coffee/breakfast/lunch. My breakfast and lunch.
7am to 7:30am – shower, get dressed, leave for work
8am to 5pm – work
After work – post office, blog, another ride on the trainer (35 min) because all the treadmills were taken 😦 then a shower and off to the above dinner.

Hopefully today will be just as productive.


Slow Food Huron Valley – Silvio’s Meet-Up

January 26, 2011 1 comment

Tuesday night, myself and Tim headed out to Silvio’s Organic Pizza in Ann Arbor for a meet-up for Slow Food Huron Valley, our local chapter of Slow Food USA.

I had been meaning to get more involved, but have only been able to make it out to one other meet-up so far, that one being back in October at the Grange.

SFHV has a lot of events coming up! I’ve got to add a couple to my calendar. I plan to make sure that I attend more events, volunteer, and hopefully make some more friends in town. (I’m currently almost friendless 😦 ).

Changing the Way We Eat: TEDx Manhattan Viewing Party on February 12: I’d really like to go to this, but I’m not sure if I can make it. We’re going to a concert in Royal Oak that night with some friends, and they’ll probably be with us all day.

I’ll definitely be going to the Michigan Good Food Film Festival (February 28th) though. I heard about this last year and I’ve been looking forward to it since then.

Silvio’s was one of the places here that I’d never been to before. I didn’t know until the other day that they had more than pizza, which makes me really happy, since I’m not a huge pizza fan in the first place.

Whole Wheat Pasta with Marinara Sauce
I think I misspoke when I ordered a half order, since I definitely was given a full one! I had every intention of only finishing half and saving the rest, but once I tasted it, that idea was thrown out the window.

Puff Pastry with vanilla filling, chocolate syrup
I think the best way to describe this is just om nom nom nom. So good.

Overall, it was a great dinner and very good conversation. I think Tim has even made a new friend to have okonomiyaki with!

We’ll be stopping by at Silvio’s again in the future for sure. Hopefully some of the vegan pizza or lasagna is in store 🙂

Ann Arbor Restaurant Week: Melange Bistro

January 21, 2011 3 comments

Holy crap, did it take us a long time to decide where to eat at for restaurant week! Even though I knew when it was coming it still was able to sneak up on us.

We finally settled on Melange Bistro, after tossing around the Earle, Chop House, Shalimar, Marnee Thai, and some other places. I wouldn’t have minded going to the others (especially Chop House, but they didn’t have a choice for first course, and I don’t like salad) but we decided on Melange since it had a pretty interesting menu and I had always wondered what it was.

Melange is on Main Street, pretty close to Conor’s and it is actually downstairs. I’d always seen the glass doors and the stairs and wondered what the heck went on down there.

The decoration and overall ambiance was (in my words) “oh-so-trendy,” but not to the point of ridiculousness. It was a bit busy, which I expected since it was 7pm and restaurant week. We were able to have our dinner in a little under two hours, which is a nice change from just plowing through dinner in front of the TV so I can keep doing other things.

The deal there was $25 per person for appetizer, entree, and dessert.

Coconut Curry Potato Croquettes, with balsamic lentils

I was really excited about those croquettes and I was not disappointed… but it takes a lot to disappoint me when it comes to potato croquettes. I had totally forgotten about the lentils until I got the dish. They were cooked perfectly, I thought. Not mushy with a little bit of a bite to them (can you cook lentils al dente?).

Jumbo shrimp, jasmine rice, and bok choy with garlic chili sauce

Such a relief to get shrimp that weren’t tiny! Good spiciness level, a little bit sweet too.

Cheesecake! No description needed 😀

The cheesecake was great and it was the perfect dessert to come after a slightly spicy entree.

Overall, it was a good experience. I would probably go back to try some more of the food… also to hope to get seated in the rounded “in the wall” tables. We aren’t wine bar people and from some of the reviews I read online the Friday and Saturday night drinking crowd (there is a DJ those nights) is a little Jersey Shore. I could totally picture that. Dinner on a weeknight is more my style 🙂