I finally have enough energy to give a little update about the weekend. Friday night was spent mostly driving through the rain on the way down to DC, stopping for a little Cracker Barrell goodness on the way. Saturday morning, we were up early to meet Jen’s friend Christine for brunch at Rocky’s in Adams Morgan during a torrential downpour, but quickly warmed up with Rocky’s culinary goodness. I had a brie omlette and a bowl of gumbo, and Jen had the legendary Grand Marnier French Toast. Delicious. It was also nice finally meeting Christine, who Jen became friends with right around the time I was leaving DC.
After brunch, we headed to the Washington Convention Center for this year’s installment of the International Wine Festival. From the get go, things were a little off, compared to our experience last year. For one, it was now held in the gross old convention center, where as last year, it was held in the pretty new Regan building. Second, it was pouring rain and they did not have a coat check set up for all of the coats and umbrellas. Third, they had this massive vestibule where people were funnelled in massive herds toward a couple little old ladies who would rip the tickets and not direct you to the next area. Jen and I made our way to the glass table, where we were bumped and jostled by a bunch of WT festival goers that were ready to get trashed. Then we decided to take a quick look around before entering into the debauchery that was sure to await us. To our surprise, we met a dude from one of the several wine tasting associations that we joined last year, and he offered to watch our coats and umbrellas for us! SCORE! After that, things were quite enjoyable, and we were the envy of most of the coat-bearing crowd.
I think the best thing about the afternoon was that we behaved ourselves in comparison to last year. In addition, the setup of this facility did not force you to visit every table as last year’s did. This one was in a single room, rather than three, had fewer wineries and less order, so in general, you sort of wandered around and figured out which spots you wanted to hit. We did discover several nice new wines (inlcuding a bunch of great New Zealand whites) and a few old favorites. By the time the end of the festival rolled around though, we were quite happy to leave. We then spent a little while checking out Olssons Books and Music (one of our favs), and finally meeting Mindy and Jeff for dinner at the M&S Grill downtown. We had a very nice dinner in a private little booth, and got to meet their friends Krista and John. After dinner, we all headed over to this cigar bar called Shelly’s Back Room where a bunch of the Missouri people were hanging out and watching a basketball game. Thanks to our afternoon buzz, I put down several pints of Guinness to no effect. 🙁 It was to my surprise that Nate and his friend Georgie (I know I spelled that wrong) showed up later to share a few beers, a few laughs….and a few digital photos. (I’ll post those later, by the way) All in all, it was a great evening, topping off a great day, and Jen and I were clobbered with exhaustion by 1:00.
Sunday, we were joined by Megan at the hotel, and we attempted to hit the Florida Avenue Grill, which to our surprise was now closed on Sundays. We didn’t remember this being the case, but it was, and so we decided to hit Kramer for brunch instead. The really funny thing is that Kramer now offers what they call the Trent-Latte, which is the same as the regular Latte, except for the fact that they serve you the coffee and the milk separately, and you have to mix them yourself. A segregated latte…I love it. After brunch, we walked around Dupont, and Jen and I both found shoes. We said goodbye to Megan, and then Jen decided to be daring and cut off about six inches of her hair. I have to say, that she looks incredibly sexy (even moreso than before, if that’s possible). We finished up our stay in DC with a quick stop at Cakelove to grab a German Chocolate cake and some of the mini-bundt cakes for the folks at home. Then it was back on the road.
The return to Jersey included a quick stop to see the folks, and a little Thai take out which we paired with a bottle of Spy Valley. Then it was pretty much packing for this week’s return to no man’s land (CT) and catching up with Chris and Gina. My return to CT was made the usual hell by the Monday morning parade of BMW driving bastards determined to run everyone not doing 95 mph off of the Merrit Pkwy. It was a relatively quiet day at the client though, with my boss milling about while loudly contemplating his pension distribution options and neglecting every important decision he has to make. Luckily, Godfather II was on AMC when I got home, so I curled up with some dinner and gave that a go.
I’d say that was a pretty thorough recap. Now that my hands are hurting, I’ll say goodbye for now….