It’s totally a Monday. And I’m not ready for Monday.
The weekend was absolutely perfect and I wish I could rewind a few days and do it all over again.
On Thursday night, I attended a Champagne and Sparking Wine tasting at the Country Club. I was able to catch up with one of my girlfriends and it was lovely after a super long Thursday at work.
On Friday night, I sipped more champagne.
Saturday started off bright and early with a trip to the gym. After a great workout, I was ready to head to Chapel Hill with Big Guy to celebrate 6 years of dating. How beautiful are these flowers he got for me?
After a day of running around Chapel Hill and having lunch with his sisters, we started the night off at The Crunkleton. I adore this bar and I cannot wait to go back. The bartender made me an amazing champagne cocktail that included grapefruit juice and cucumber. Yes, cucumber. It was so refreshing and the most absolute perfect drink for me. Big Guy savored Pappy Van Winkle’s 15Y Family Reserve bourbon. Sometimes you just have to get out of town and date one another. And I pray we have 60 more years of dating ahead of us.
I was so looking forward to our dinner on Saturday night. I had made reservations at Lantern after reading so many amazing things about this restaurant. Unfortunately, it didn’t quite live up to my expectations. I’m not sure if I set the bar too high (hey, it’s on Gourmet Magazines Top 50 list as well as on Southern Livings 100 Places to Eat in the South) or if they were just having an off night. They describe themselves as a “marriage of Asian flavors and North Carolina ingredients” but I just didn’t get as much Asian flavor as I had hoped for.
To start we shared two appetizers:
Lantern charcuterie – pork terrine, crispy rillettes, air-dried Red Poll beef, Chicken Bridge Bakery bolillo, local pickles
Salt and pepper shrimp – wild shrimp with crispy shells, fried jalapeños, coriander, sea salt
While I enjoyed the shrimp (Big Guy did not), I felt that the dish was missing something. I wanted to dip the shrimp into an Asian-inspired sauce but there was no sauce.
And for my main dish:
Crispy whole Snapper Cha ca la Vong – hot chile, fresh turmeric, dill, fried shallots, roasted peanuts, spicy heirloom carrot salad, jasmine rice
First of all, the fish was cooked to perfection and the presentation was gorgeous. However, the sauce was very much Mexican-inspired as opposed to the Asian-inspiration I was hoping for. The sauce that was on Big Guy’s plate was what I wanted.
The service was fantastic, though it did take almost an hour to get our main dish but we can’t blame our waitress for that. Despite the lack of Asian-flavors I still thoroughly enjoyed the night and I’m pretty sure that’s because I had the best date in the restaurant.
On Sunday morning we slept in and it was glorious. Before heading back to reality, we grabbed lunch at Crook’s Corner. I loved the atmosphere of this cafe. The weather was amazing on Sunday and we got to sit out back on the patio. To start, cheddar and jalapeno hush puppies. Perfectly cooked and piping hot, these hit the spot.
And to eat, I went with their famous Shrimp and Grits. But honestly, Big Guy’s lunch stole the show.
The most delicious bite of the trip – a pimiento and bacon grilled cheese. I die.
I live for weekends like this past weekend.
Though some weeks are longer than others, knowing that I get to spend a whole weekend with Big Guy gets me through the weeks.