This past weekend I traveled to visit my best friend and his wife. He moved out of town for his first big boy job ever. He’s salaried. How weird. It’s like we’ve spent all this time trying to get to this point and now, all of a sudden, he’s here. Joshua’s made it. When I got there on Friday we went to one of the oldest restaurants in the city.
It is known for German food, obviously, so we started with their sampler. On the plate: sauerkraut balls, fried pickles, and their famous potato pancake topped with sautéed apples and sour cream.
I LOVED the pickles. Instead of chips or thin slices, they were whole spears. It gave you a better pickle to batter ratio. I could have eaten a whole plate of them. The sauerkraut balls were good too. I always think I’m going to not like sauerkraut and then I always so, especially when paired with thousand island dressing. Lastly, the potato pancake was really interesting. You go the saltiness of the potato, the sweetness of the apples, and then the smoothness of the sour cream. Again, I could have eaten a whole plate! Shortly after we got the appetizers (read: while we still had food on the plate) our entrees arrived. I had a small plate of seared sea scallops with parsnip puree and apple cider vinegar reduction. On the side I had spaetzle to cure my craving for it.
The scallops were cooked perfectly which was good because the parsnip puree fell a tiny bit flat. I think it needed so more seasoning. The spaetzle was super delish. On the other side of the table, Joshua had the wiener schnitzel with asparagus and German fried potatoes.
While I wasn’t in love with the meat on the plate, the potatoes were to die for. The crust on them was beyond incredible. Luckily Joshua shared. =D We were asked if we wanted dessert and we did indeed entertain the notion by perusing the dessert tray but nothing called to us as strongly as the possibility of froyo. We paid and a few minutes later we were waltzing into a nearby self-serve café. In my bowl: taro frozen yogurt (some of the best I have ever had) and cake batter froyo all topped with cookie dough, buckeyes, cheesecake bites, peanut butter cups, animal cookies, snow caps, hot fudge, and a cherry.
Thankfully, this was indeed exactly what we wanted. I was so happy with this cup. Oh froyo, it’s been too long! While we were sitting there devouring our desserts spoonful by spoonful, we noticed a sign that made us both laugh:
Seriously, let’s be honest. If you’ve ever been to a self-serve, pay-by-the-ounce froyo place, you are well aware that a cup of that size, filled up like that, does NOT cost only $2.26. Haha. It’s cost so much more! Full and content, we headed back to his apartment and slept. I had the couch which was remarkably comfortable. By the time morning came around, I felt like I hadn’t moved at all. We three, his wife included, went to the fitness center to work out. I did some elliptical work and then weight machines followed by a few Insanity moves done as a circuit. Joshua joined me for a few of the Insanity numbers.
After showers and a nice brunch, we decided to tackle
one of the largest grocery stores I have ever seen, let alone been in. The place is called Jungle Jims and right from the start it had character.
Now, the crazy part about this store is that where a normal grocery has sections for things like pasta or Indian food, this place has whole AREAS, whole WALLS, whole AISLES for these. They even have a map. No joke. And there are tours.
Now, check out some of the goods. First up, the best cheese section you have ever seen. There was a whole cooler just for goat cheese varieties. Man, it was a super good thing I had no way of taking these home with me or I would have walked out of there with multiple wheels of goodness.
A whole buffet of different types of olives. My dad would have been in heaven.
How about a wall of hot sauces or chocolates?
I couldn’t believe the honey selection. If I had unlimited money I would figure out ways to use all of these. Maybe straight spoonage would be involved??
The bakery was also breathtaking. Cakes, truffles, donuts, breads, etc. It was mouthwatering. You could even have custom caramel apples made!
So was the Jelly Belly wall. I could have filled up a whole bag for my own munching pleasure.
This place also had a huge wine selection. I mean, who on Earth carries an $8000 bottle of wine. Really? Really.
One of the cutest things was their play on Two Buck Chuck. The Two Bill Jill. Aw, it’s named for me…
Oh, and if you need enough carrots to feed a small army, they have that too. Honestly, the bag was the size of a little child. Who needs that many carrots?!
Lastly, this supermarket had a whole cooler devoted to Jeni’s ice cream. I fell in love with these unique flavors when I went to a Jeni’s store during Thanksgiving break with the family. If only these pints weren’t $10 a pop, I’d be all over them. You cannot beat their goat cheese and cognac fig ice cream with a stick!
So, basically, this THREE HOUR trip was really awesome. I had such a fun time exploring the whole of the huge store. In the end, I restrained myself enough to only leave with some cherry chocolate granola bars and some greatly priced flaxseed meal.
The rest of the day was spent baking pretzels, eating cheese fondue, and chocolate fondue, watching The Blind Side, and having some beers.
It was a nice way to finish off the night and by the time I hit the sack I was more than ready for sleep. I had to wake up super early to get on the road to come back home. I had church in the morning and I almost cried during the sermon. My favorite Reverend seems to have that effect on me sometimes. He just speaks to the heart of me most days. I’m glad I went. All in all, great weekend.
Questions: What is your favorite German food?
What type of granola bars do you like?