Travel

In New York EVERYTHING is gourmet

There is so much gourmet in N.Y. Gourmet delis in Queens
There is so much gourmet in N.Y. This gourmet deli in Queens is apparently also a casino…maybe

My family and I took a quick trip to New York over the long weekend. We were only there for two and a half days and yet we saw so many gourmet markets. How gourmet are they? (more…)

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Here’s a taste of Taste of Atlanta

The offering from The Spence-Risottto and Morcilla Arancini.  Nothing like a little blood sausage to start a conversation.
The offering from The Spence-Risottto and Morcilla Arancini. Nothing like a little blood sausage to start a conversation.

The Taste of Atlanta is a food festival that’s worth the trip (according to Oprah… and me) and its coming soon.  October 24-26 to be exact.  Over 90 restaurants are expected to participate (more…)

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Callaway Gardens Dining-The Gardens Restaurant

gardening, plants, Callaway Gardens
Here’s part two of my Callaway Gardens post. I needed to do a whole other post about our dinner at The Garden Restaurant at Callaway Gardens. This flower will be the only non food thing in this post…enjoy.

During our stay at Callaway Gardens we dined at The Gardens Restaurant, the most upscale of the many dining options at Callaway. So upscale in fact that my husband made sure to teach our kids to eat like sophisticated people, both pinkies out please.

Let’s start with the appetizers:

Callaway Garden, The Garden Restaurant at Callaway gardens, crab cake, appetizer
The kids split a crab cake appetizer with lemon butter sauce and micro greens. They both loved the crab cake but my daughter raved about the sauce.
garden salad, The Gardens Restautant, Callaway Gardens
My husband had a fresh, crisp  garden salad for his appetizer. 
New England Clam Chowder, The Gardens Restaurant, Callaway Gardens
My appetizer was a deliciously creamy New England Clam Chowder. With tender clams it was perfect on a cool day.

On to the entrees

Lamb chops, The Gardens Restaurant, Callaway Gardens
My son ordered the Balsamic Marinated Grilled Colorado Lamb Chops
With toasted walnut pesto, Brussels sprouts with pancetta and cheddar grit cake
scallops, the Gardens Restaurant, Callaway Gardens
The scallop entree. Prosciutto-Wrapped Scallops, sweet potato puree, maple butter and spaghetti squash. Scallops were perfectly cooked to an almost creamy consistency.
Braised pork shank, The Gardens Restaurant, Callaway Gardens
I ordered Braised Pork Shank
with wild mushroom demi-glace, cheddar grits and sautéed spaghetti squash. DELICIOUS! I love a rich demi glace served with grits to catch it. The texture was perfect, the really know how to cook protein.  They got it right every time. 
Flat Iron steak, The Gardens Restaurant, Callaway Gardens
My daughter had the Marinated Grilled Flat Iron Steak
With wild mushroom demi glace, oven roasted red and gold beets and herb mashed potatoes

Drinks and Dessert

Hot Buttered Rum, Pyrat rum, The Gardens Restaurant, Callaway Gardens
Hot buttered rum with Pyrat rum. Pyrat is the Man’s favorite drank. He was not too sure about the “butter” but once he tasted it he was happy
apple tart, The Gardens Restaurant, Callaway Gardens
And he can’t resist any apple dessert. Warm Apple Galette
With housemade cinnamon ice cream
Pumpkin creme brulee, The Gardens Restaurant, Callaway Gardens
My dessert, pumpkin creme brulee, super creamy and not too sweet
Chocolate lava cake, The Gardens Restaurant, Callaway Gardens
Chocolate Lava Cake
The kids shared this Chocolate ganache center with housemade blood orange ice cream for dessert. They absolutely DESTROYED IT!

Chef de Cuisine Peter Stiles did a fantastic job. Service was smooth, warm and friendly all in all we had a great evening

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Callaway Gardens- A Fantasy in Lights and Food..and Birds and Plants

Christmas lights, Callaway Gardens, lights holiday
Callaway Gardens has one of the best Christmas lights displays on EARTH! Yes, it’s that good. It took just under an hour to get through the tour but the time flies by.

I love the weeks leading up to Christmas, I love driving around and seeing the neighborhood light displays.  This weekend we saw one of the 10 best  Christmas light shows on the planet (according to National Geographic). The Christmas light Show to beat ALL Christmas light shows the Festival of Lights at Callaway Gardens (Pine Mountain, GA).  Pictures don’t do it justice, parts of the tour have animated light themes … it’s just great….but wait, there’s more.  After you finish the Festival of Lights you have the Christmas Village.

Christmas, Callaway Gardens, funnel cake, fried apples,kettle corn, nuts
a TON of vendors outside of the Christmas village. Deep fried everything and some great kettle corn. Even maple/bacon funnel cake
Christmas,Christmas Village, Callaway Gardens, wine bottle stopper, cork screw
Inside the Christmas Village at Callaway Gardens there were handmade gifts and a giant gingerbread man

Thankfully we had a cabin waiting for us

cabin, Callaway Gardens,
We had a two bedroom cabin at Callaway Gardens, that’s the kids room pictured above. They made themselves right at home. Our room was similar and each bedroom had it’s own bathroom. It’s not fancy, it’s like staying with a relative…a relative who leaves you alone.  Full kitchen and cozy living room with everything you need to snuggle up by the fire. It was a little cool for the screened in porch

Still more stuff to show you…and remember this is in the late fall, almost Winter.  I’d love to go back when it warms up in the Spring and the azalea’s are blooming.

We woke up pretty late the next day and were in no hurry to get moving so we had breakfast in the cabin.  I brought cheese, crackers, grapes, cereal, milk and juice with us so we had plenty to eat.  We finally got it together and headed out to the Birds of Prey (Raptor) show.  All of the birds in the show were rescued in some way or another.  Several were human imprints (some well meaning folks tried to raise the birds but now they can’t survive on their own ) and one that was hit by a truck and is blind in one eye. Now in the care of the center we can get a good look at them up close

Raptors, Callaway Gardens, birds, birds of prey, hawks, owl
Rescued birds of prey at Callaway Gardens. The Show was moved indoors due to rain and they added another show to accommodate the guests. Broad-Winged Hawk, Red Shouldered Hawk, Barn Owl and Red Tailed Hawk

Then the horticultural center, I could have stayed in there all day.

Christmas, Callaway Gardens, horticultural, Poinsettias, chenille plant, topiary,
Inside the horticultural center Callaway gardens. I can only remember the name of the first one, it’s a chenille plant and the poinsettias below it.

Yes, there’s still more

Bikes, tandem bikes, Callaway Gardens
Bikes for rent at Callaway Gardens

I still haven’t covered it all. There are bikes to rent and trails to hike and golf and a tree top obstacle course and ziplines. The kids were tempted to try the Tree Top Adventure but there was a bit of rain.   They’ve been wanting to zipline for a while now, they thought long and hard about it. Some guests were up in the trees on the obstacle course in the rain but my kids decided against it.

Then there was dinner at The Gardens Restaurant inside Callaway Gardens.  Dinner deserves it’s own post so stay tuned!

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My trip to Tennessee…kinda

suckling pig, before
suckling pig, before

Last night my husband and I took a quick trip to Tennessee…well not really.  We to a trip to the King Plow Art Center to attend an event to promote Tennessee Tourism.  It was a lovely event with LOTS of pork (check the Instagram video), barbecue sauce, cupcakes and moonshine.  There was lots more than that but that’s what I remember.  Oh, and the music was great, check out my Instagram video for a listen.  The hospitality was wonderful and exhibits, like one of Elvis’ Jackets and a belt buckle, were great.

Our family had been contemplating a summer trip to Tennessee and after tasting Muddy’s Bake Shop’s coconut Chess Pie I’d like to go right now.  Super cute Kat Gordon and her equally cute brother Kip brought a huge variety of sweets and everything was delicious. EVERYTHING. Reminiscing about their sweets make me want to drive to Memphis tonight.

I even asked the park ranger promoting tourism of historic Civil War sites if she referred to the Civil War as the “War of Northern Aggression” she smiled and said “No, none of the rangers do”.  That made me smile.

The moonshine was strong and the pulled pork was tender, what more could you ask for?  All in all a good night, check the Pics below:

Welcome to King Plow arts center. Atlanta
Welcome to King Plow arts center. Atlanta
King Plow sculpture
King Plow sculpture
Welcome to Tennessee
Welcome to Tennessee
Wine service to start the party right
Wine service to start the party right
Bites of smoked sausage and cheese
Bites of smoked sausage and cheese
Pulled pork and ribs
Pulled pork and ribs

 

suckling pig, after
suckling pig, after
Warm bread pudding mini mason jars
Warm bread pudding mini mason jars
Kat Gordon from Muddy's Bake Shop and her beautiful dessert display
Kat Gordon from Muddy’s Bake Shop and her beautiful dessert display
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