Friday, July 4, 2014

Moving to a new location

Well, as if moving to a new city wasn't excitement enough, we're also moving our blog home.  Please follow us over to the new address to keep up with our travels.

Friday, July 19, 2013

F&B Report -- and pouting because we have to leave

After breakfast Thursday, we took our "to go" coffees down to the deck to enjoy some breeze -- some much needed breeze, as it was another muggy, muggy day!  I made absolutely sure to stay in the shelter of the trees, lest my sunburned chest act as a beacon for seaplanes or something dangerous... also, to avoid any more sunburn!

There wasn't time for the morning Food and Beverage report, though, as we had to prepare ourselves for our final spa treat to ourselves -- originally scheduled for later in the afternoon, but bumped to noon, so Cindy could get to a family "do" later in the day.  So we just sat and sipped and enjoyed the breeze.

Our final spa treat was a two-hour appointment.  A cranberry pomegranate scrub for Don, a pear and green apple wrap for me (the idea of a scrub with my sunburn was not tempting...), followed by another couples massage.  Cindy said "awww" when she and Sheryl came in, and insisted on taking a picture -- she may have later regretted it, as it necessitated her getting up on a chair to get the photo.

Then Cindy and Sheryl alternately gooped and scrubbed us, and then wrapped us in our big cocoons to soak it all in and get head massages.  They took a picture of us in our cocoons, too, because our hands weren't free to stop them.  :)

Cocoons of bliss -- Cindy gave Don the pink blanket to tease him

After the cocoons, they sent us into the shower to rinse off the goop, while they re-made the tables for our massages.  Our skin already felt incredible, but there was more to come.  I got gooped with champagne mimosa cream for my massage, and Don got gooped with stone-somethingorother, which had an herb-y, flowery kind of smell to it.  Massages and facial massages and lots of joking around.

We floated out of the massage room, feeling totally blissed out.  They were asking about our music, so after we were done, we gave them a couple of Live Love Dream CDs as a thank you, and promised to see them again in the fall.

Then it was time for ice water -- LOTS of ice water.  It was looking pretty darned threatening outside, so we decided to stay in our room for a bit, under the fan, and read / do the Food & Beverage report.  Good thing, too, because shortly after I started writing, the skies opened up and rain was just pouring.  It gave a bit of relief for a while, but was soon just as muggy again, sigh...

Don, of course, fell asleep.  I read for a while and then was about to ditch him for the air-conditionning, but managed to spill all over myself while stealing a swig from the sleeping guy's melted ice water, so figured I'd wait until I dried off and didn't look like such a klutz.  :)  By the time I was dry again, Don was awake, so we headed down to the pub for a pool re-match.

Happy (?) to report that we're just as lousy at sober pool as we are at drunken pool.  We might even be worse at sober pool, really...  Just to test that theory, we figured a beer and another couple of games would determine it.  Yes, we're totally lousy at both, although it's better to be lousy with an excuse.  :)

And then it was time to shower up for our last dinner.  Claudio was back, and had set up our favourite table for us.  Don't worry, we spared you a photo from our favourite table.  :)  But here's the menu!

Thursday night menu
We opted to do a repeat of the Rhighetti Amarone for our wine.  For starters, Don opted for the Carrot & Orange Soup, Garnished with Grand Marnier & Honey Macerated Orange Segments.  I managed to get a pic in before he finished:

Don's soup
And I went for the Cultivated Mushroom Strudel with Goat Cheese and Roasted Peppers -- divine!  I could probably have had that and dessert, and been a happy mama.
Alyssa's mostly-finished strudel
Which, unfortunately, brings me to one thing that did NOT make me a very happy Mama: lack of variety for vegetarians, even the occasional-fish-eating variety.  Because I still had two leftover boxes of fish in our fridge, I asked what the purely vegetarian option was.  I was told they hadn't discussed it, but would check with the chef.  Chef's offering -- friggin' gnocchi with roast vegetables again.  The same vegetarian option that had been offered every night but one during our visit.  Now don't get me wrong, I love gnocchi, and the first time I had it, it was delicious.  But the next person to offer me gnocchi might be witness to me stabbing my eye out with a fork, just sayin'...

(Contrast this to our first year at Sir Sam's, when the chef was excited to experiment and try out a variety of dishes each night, each one better than the last, inventive, and only once resorting to pasta -- let alone more friggin' gnocchi -- but even that was so far away from your basic pasta, it was easily forgivable.)

Nevertheless, I could face the Gnocchi more easily than I could face another piece of fish, so I went with that.  It was good, but pretty much exactly the same as I'd had the previous time -- and, I suspect, the same as it would have been the other four times it had been offered, making me glad I also eat fish, but wondering what a total vegetarian would do with that fork and her own eyeball if faced with seven days in a row of gnocchi -- minus one pasta.  This is my one and only complaint about the food here, mind you, but it's good to get it off my chest.  :)

More flippin' gnocchi

Don decided to try the Oven Roasted Brest of Duck Magret with a Mango and Ginger Glaze and a Light Mustard Cream.  Apparently it was good, because this is the only photo I was able to grab:

What remained of the Duck Magret

Don, of course, went for the strawberries with whipped cream for dessert, but I was tempted away by the Highland Maple Creme Brûlée, which was decadent (and too much for me to finish, unfortunately).

We headed off to the pub, to enjoy the air conditioning.  Oh yeah, and an 18-year Glenlivet for me and a 16-year Lagavullin for Don.  We watched another family playing pool, and thought they did a much better job than we would have.  :)

And then, in walks Cindy (of massage fame) with her husband Rob.  (She declared many times, "I just KNEW I'd find you here!" -- should we be concerned?)  She had enjoyed listening to "Live Love Dream" so much, she wanted to buy some more CDs!  So Don hopped out to the car to get her a copy of "I Am Myself" (his latest solo CD) and "Dark Waters" (my only solo CD) as well, to help her enjoy her long drive to Windsor on Friday morning.  We celebrated with another round of single malt, since it was our last night of Sir Sam's (but not the end of vacation yet!).

And then it was time to brace ourself for life outside A/C -- we grabbed another round for the room, just to help us survive.  :)  It was, indeed, still pretty darned hot out, and stuffy.  Thank goodness for the fans and the ability to leave our windows and curtains wide open, to get all the air we could.

This morning looked a little stormy, but the weather held out for us -- although was still muggy as heck.  Don took a few last pics from our window before we headed down for breakfast:

Don went for the usual for breakfast, and I chose the mushroom, basil, red pepper and Canadian swiss cheese (?) omelette.  It was too hot for me to have any appetite, unfortunately, so I only managed to get through a little over half of it.  It was good, though!

Then we packed up our stuff, checked out of the room and headed home, briefly, to do laundry and buy wine and get ready to go away again for a dinner party and sleepover, before heading back up for a going-away party Saturday night for a couple of dear friends.  It appears we won't be sleeping in our own beds for a while, yet.  :)  But we will spare our hosts the agony of a food and beverage report, so this is the last you'll hear from us for a while.

We got home to a very stuffy city and very stuffy house, which has now been wooshed away (the stuffiness, not the house) by possible tornadoes, definite thunderstorms, horizontal rain and a couple of power outages.  Hopefully the drama is over now, because we have to hit the highway again in an hour!  C'mon Toto, how bad can it be...?

Hope everyone has enjoyed these reports as much as we've enjoyed being able to make them!  We're planning to head back in the fall for another wine weekend, so do let us know if you want to join us -- as long as it's not our anniversary week, the more the merrier!  :)