Sunday, June 29, 2014

Heavenly Brunches at The Viceroy

The Viceroy knows how to wow the palate during brunch. In the past few months we went twice. Once for Easter and again on Father's Day. Both times the food was excellent. I also appreciate that The Viceroy opens at 10:30 AM for brunch. I prefer going a bit earlier and skipping the after-church crowd. And I have no qualms over ordering a cocktail (yes, think of a Manhattan-esque beverage) that early in the morning.

The other cool thing about brunch is pricing. I can enjoy all of Ryan Baldwin's exquisite dishes at reasonable prices. Brunch offerings range in price from $9 - $14 and features imaginative dishes that match the dinner menu.

Here is what we enjoyed (in no particular order) between the two visits.

A split of pink bubbly

A Splash of Pink Bubbly

Champagne Butter Poached Lobster and Avocado Omelet

Champangne Butter Poached Lobster with Avocado Omelet
The Lobster Omelet was perfect for Easter brunch
Torched Handmade Mozzarella Wrapped in Prosciutto with Fig Balsamic Sauce

Torched Handmade Mozzarella Wrapped in Prosciutto
This dish is always a favorite
Crab Sandwich with Fries

Crabmeat Sandwich and Fries

Duck Breast with Fried Egg and Hash Browns

Duck Breat with Egg and Hash Browns
Awesome special for the day
Smoked Pork Shoulder with Grits and Eggs

Smoked Pork Shoulder with Grits and Eggs
The pork could be pulled apart with a fork and the flavor was delightful
Plungerhead Zin

Plungerhead Zin
Great choice with the pork and duck

Oh so good! And there were other items on the menu that we also wanted to get. The only solution is to go back!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Crab and Filet Special at Tastebuds

Tastebuds American Bistro features awesome specials on Friday and Saturday nights. Check out this one...

Crab-Topped Filet with Potatoes and Asparagus

Yummy! We enjoyed this special at the beginning of June.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Pomegranate in Carytown

In the early Spring we wandered into Pomegranate for dinner. On that Friday night they still had a table available.

Hubby wanted to try the gnocchi. Unfortunately, they had just switched to their new Spring menu and it was not available. Disappointing, but the only disappointment of the evening.

We toasted our incredible lack of gnocchi luck with a Milanese Manhattan and then ordered a bottle of The Possessor, a Tooth and Nail red blend from California. Loved the wine; loved the label.


To begin our meal we ordered Roasted Veal Marrow Bones with Watercress and Radish Salad. Kind of a Winter into Spring starter. The marrow bones were rich and full of flavor; the salad, light and zesty.

For entrees I chose a traditional Steak and Frites accompanied by grilled ramps. All very tasty and so nice to welcome in Spring with the ramps. The large portion meant leftovers for a future dinner at home.

Hubby had the Italian Sausage with Pickled Mustard Seed, Spinach, and Spaetzle. The portion looked deceivingly small, but turned out to be just right and delicious.

We enjoyed great food. We also experienced excellent service from the talented Ashley. Her cheerful demeanor and patience as we perused cocktail and wine lists and her timing ensured that we had a most incredible evening.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Bond in the Bush at Can Can

The Bond in the Bush Martini at Can Can. Green Hat Gin, Stolichnaya Vodka, Lillet Blanc, Basil, and Cucumber. My hubby considers this a little bit of heaven.


Tuesday, June 10, 2014


At the end of March we visited Rome for 10 days with my folks. The Eternal City offers plenty to do for the traveler with over 900 churches, numerous ancient ruins, and other delights as one roams the cobbled streets. Most of the traditional sites are within walking distance. The subway does not cover the entire city, but trains arrive every five minutes. Just beware of pick pockets when it is crowded.

A few other pieces of advice.

Churches - While most of the churches look drab and in need of cleaning, the interiors are spectacular and range from Byzantine to Baroque decor. We visited about a dozen, some intentional, others by happenstance. We were not disappointed. Churches were free to visit. Some charge to visit their crypt and/or museum. Photos were allowed in most except during mass. If you want to see something fascinatingly creepy check out the church of Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini on Via Vento. Pay the money to see the museum and crypt. The crypt is decorated with the bones of monks and features a pelvic room among others. No photos were allowed, but the macabre setting remained memorable.

Ruins - The Colosseum was spectacular and took us half a day to visit. The ticket also allowed us to see the Forum and Palatine Hill. Online we read that the ticket was good for three days. When we purchased our tickets, they were good for two. Allow more time to see the Forum and Palatine Hill. The area was vast and awe-inspiring. I could have spent more time wandering about. If you are short on funds, there are other sites that you can see for free. If you go to the the Colosseum on Sunday you'll experience a slightly surreal treat. The main road from the Colosseum to the Il Vittoriano Monument (aka The Wedding Cake) is closed to traffic and families, friends, and lovers stroll along the wide boulevard during the day.

The Vatican - We paid a lot to go on an early morning tour of the Vatican Museums before they opened to the general public. We got to see the Sistine Chapel with about 25 other visitors and could comfortably sit or stand to take in the masterpiece. Based on the subsequent reports, this was a good move. Later on one can be packed in like a sardine. The Vatican Museums were vast and we did not have enough time to cover the other parts. If you go, do not let the tour convince you to exit. Take your time.  The museum even sports cafes for lunch. Upon exiting, make sure you take time to make your way to the dome. Pay the extra two euros for the elevator because you will still climb an inordinate amount of curving stairs to the very top. This was the only dome where we could climb to the top (at least from the places we visited); worth seeing Rome from high above.

Food - Because we were a party of four and not two, we stuck to more of the touristy places and dined outside upon checked tablecloths a fair number of times. We only had one abysmal experience (near the Vatican) and we left before we ordered food. Pasta and pizzas were all good. My father loved the fresh tomatoes and I enjoyed the Roman artichokes. We did hit up one organic place on Via Urbana and we had lunch at a garden patio featuring a potato, white bean,  and octopus salad (very delicious). One of the checked table cloth places had a waiter that reminded us of Nathan Lane. He took a shine to our family and at the end of the meal plied us with limoncello and amaro free of charge. If you have time check out Campo de'Fiori, the morning food and flower market. They feature all kinds of produce with a few meat and cheese vendors for good measure. A feast for the tummy and the eyes.

I'll leave you with a few photos. If you want more, check out my flickr site.

I hope you enjoyed the brief glimpse. Ciao!