March 2015. I went to TRAVAIL KITCHEN & AMUSEMENTS in Robbinsdale, Minnesota with my best friend Carrie. It was her birthday gift to me! It was the most amazing dinner of my life. The chef's tasting menu was 22 courses. The style of the restaurant blends playfulness, seasonality of ingredients, molecular gastronomy and upscale cuisine in a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere. One of our courses was served on a rock. Another was served on a fish hook. Another in a test tube and another took you through their open style kitchen going from station to station using liquid nitrogen to create your dessert. We were amazed with the inventive and amusing presentation of each course. We enjoyed homemade gnocchi, fluke, brisket, lobster bisque, squid ink ravioli, bellini with caviar, curry and many, many other incredible dishes. It was spectacular and I would recommend it to anyone who appreciates remarkable food and exceptional presentation. There just aren't enough adjectives to describe this ultimate foodie experience. I will never forget it!
February 2015. I fed baby goats! Those of you who know me well, know that I am OBSESSED with baby goats! I love the cute little sounds they make, the way their little tails wag and how they bounce around and play with each other. One of my co-workers at the Chandelier Ballroom has a farm with many, many little baby goats and she offered to let me come over and feed them with bottles. I couldn't stop smiling and laughing... they were so adorable. They nibbled on my ears and my coat and gloves and they were so excited for me to feed them milk. They were playful and social and so cuddly! Someday a goat farm is in my future... I just know it!
January 2015. I decided to vacation somewhere warm that I had never visited. I went to the Dominican Republic with my boyfriend Dave and we had an amazing time. The island was gorgeous and the people were so friendly. It was great to see the sun for a week and get away from the long Wisconsin winter. We took pictures of the white sandy beaches, the beautiful flowers around our hotel and the four-wheeling off-road excursion we went on. All of the photos were put together in a coffee table book which is the best souvenir one could ask for!
I recently attended a five course dinner at Lake Park Bistro in Milwaukee with four of my fabulous foodie friends!
I have included a copy of the menu for you to see. Each course was paired with a wine from Chateau Beycheville in France and we were able to meet the winemaker himself! It was an honor to have the opportunity to attend a meal of this caliber. The service was impeccable and I was pampered with fabulous food and wine all evening. Each course was not only visually stunning but perfectly seasoned and prepared. It was so much fun to discuss the progression of the meal with friends and discover their likes and dislikes. The night was unforgettable and a truly wonderful experience! I left feeling inspired with a mind full of new ideas, a full belly and a smile on my face.
As you know, I am slightly obsessed with all aspects of entertaining, including finding great new beverages to offer my guests at summer BBQs, tailgates and upcoming Sausagefest. I stumbled upon a sample of Leinenkugels Grapefruit Shandy while I was at Baconfest this February and was immediately hooked. I had to get my hands on every one of the deliciously refreshing options and try them ALL! My favorite is Schofferhofer, in bottles not cans. I'm weird like that. It is my pick for my porch pounder (beer category) this summer season! It is light, fruity, smooth and has a nice hint of grapefruit without being too overpowering or bitter. I hope you will grab a six pack for your next weekend in the Wisconsin summer sun!