Meriwether’s

More 10% and less 90%

Remember my 90/10 Rule? The motto by which I live my life as a person in Maintenance Mode after losing over 100 pounds? Well these past few days I’ve been living in the 10%.

Michael’s father and stepmother were visiting us from Texas and so we were playing tour guides for all things Oregon. It’s an annual trip. Last summer we took them to the beach, wine tasting and hiking in Hood River, and ate at lots and lots of good Portland restaurants (boy do I see those extra 10 pounds in last year’s photos!!). G and G (dad and stepmom) LOVE Portland restaurants and love eating seafood when they visit.

I was fully prepared for this visit to be another Orgy of Food. It usually is. I went into the visit prepared to splurge and indulge but to try and remember to do it in moderation.

Wednesday night we picked them up from the hotel downtown and headed out to Marine Drive for dinner. You may recognize the name Marine Drive because that’s one of the routes that Michael and I bike on a lot. It was rather strange being out there without the bikes! I had reservations for Salty’s on the Columbia River.

We had a lovely table right by the window looking out at the boats and water. I ordered a glass of the Pinot Gris and they brought yummy sourdough bread to the table.

The four of us split the order of calamari (with spicy jalapeno dipping sauce). The calamari wasn’t as good as Jake’s but the sauce was killer.

For my entree I ordered the Cornmeal Dusted Trout with potato hash. The trout appealed to me because when I was a kid I used to go fishing for trout. I don’t eat it very often, so I decided to give it a try. I didn’t realize that “cornmeal dusted” basically meant breaded. 🙁 That was the only disappointing part. The spicy garlic aioli sauce on top of the fish was good.

Michael got the Ahi Tuna with Hawaiian sticky rice. I had a bite and it was pretty good but I like our Ahi Tuna steaks (blackened) much better. G and G both ordered the halibut (their favorite in Oregon).


Everyone was happy with their dinners. What did I think of the food? It was good but not the best seafood I’ve ever had. Salty’s had mixed reviews on Yelp–I thought it was good but nothing I’d be gushing over like some other meals I’ve had (The Blue Pig or Laurelhurst Market comes to mind).

I had a second glass of wine with my entree (probably could have stopped with just the one) and then they all wanted dessert. I was pretty stuffed but I said I’d split something with Michael. We ordered two pieces of Key Lime Pie for the table and Michael and I split it. The Key Lime was tart with just right amount of sweetness. After the day I’d had at work though I wasn’t thinking about the calories one bit. I was seeking comfort.


It was nice seeing Michael’s family. The four of us stayed well passed dessert just chatting and catching up and then we headed home.

Thursday – Meriwether’s

 

The next morning (Thursday) I woke up a little early and went swimming before we started our day as tour guides. For lunch we headed to Northwest Portland for Meriwether’s.


The plan was to hopefully sit in their garden patio outside because it was such a nice day. It was almost noon on a Thursday but apparently we needed reservations?!?! The patio was booked up for almost 2 hours so we sat inside. 🙁

I ordered the Scallop & Hazelnut Crumb Salad with hummus, tahini yogurt, and farm greens. It was basically seared scallops with the ground up hazelnuts used as a crust. Oh. My. God. The scallops were perfect and the hazelnut crust was crunchy and subtle. They melted in my mouth and although the hummus and tahini sounded like a strange combination with seafood it went perfectly.

I practically licked my plate clean, I kid you not. The hunk of salty, oily foccacia bread was my second favorite thing on the plate beside the scallops. Magnificent. I think my lunch was a smart move calorie/health wise. There were 2 scallops on the plate, hummus is healthy and it came with greens and fennel. I think it was a pretty good choice for a “light lunch.”

Michael ordered the bacon cheeseburger and said it was “just okay.” He said it tasted good but the bun was a little tough. That was one of the things I didn’t like about the Gruner burger–having to saw through the bun with my teeth!


The homemade chips that came with the burger were stellar though. I don’t think I’ve ever had homemade chips that good. We had a lovely lunch, even though we didn’t get to sit outside. I was happy that the place I suggested was such a hit with our guests–they raved about what they ordered.

The food orgy doesn’t stop there, though….

QUESTION: How do you order smart in restaurants?

Happy New Year!

New Year’s Eve was a memorable one. The snowshoeing we did earlier in the day was fun and scenic. We laid low the rest of the afternoon until it was time to get ready to go out to dinner. I made dinner reservations at Meriwether’s for 7:30pm. We went there for happy hour months ago and loved it. I’m glad I made reservations too because the place was packed when we got there.

I took a long shower (which felt great after the 10 degree weather), did my nails and got all dolled up to go out. I really wish I had gotten a better picture of my dress because this one doesn’t do it justice.

Neither of us drank before we went out. I was feeling dehydrated from the snowshoeing so I stuck with water. I was also smart the rest of the night by drinking a LOT of water! I did not want to start 2011 feeling crappy.

It was COLD out! I was glad I chose to wear tights but they weren’t nearly as thick as they should have been to keep me warm. The restaurant was nice and dimly lit; very romantic (and also a hard environment to take good photos). We were seated by a window and there was Christmas music playing. It was wonderful.

I ordered a glass of a Chilean Syrah that was heavy, sweet with cherries and honey, and the perfect glass to celebrate the occasion. I probably should have ordered a glass of white to go with my dinner but I really enjoyed my selection–so who cares about “proper” wine pairings?

Although, the Corpse Reviver sounded very intriguing….! There was bread to start with. It was thick, moist (heh), salty and absolutely divine. The olive oil was rich. The bread was so good it really didn’t need the olive oil.

Instead of appetizers we each ordered a small cup of soup. I ordered the soup du jour which was a creamy tomato bisque with Parmesan cheese and basil. It was probably one of the best tomato bisques I’ve ever eaten.  Michael ordered the French Onion Soup–which was very very sweet but amazing as well. I will definitely be ordering that next time we eat there!

Now look at that gooey cheese and just TRY to tell me you wouldn’t want that soup! I ordered one more glass of the Syrah to go with dinner. The menus came and the entree I had already picked out (pork with polenta and veggies) wasn’t on the menu anymore. Bummer. I scoured the menu for something else. There were so many yummy things to choose from.

I ordered the Dungeness Crab Risotto. It came with fresh (amazing) crab, some crunchy veggie I couldn’t figure out and lemon zest. It was really decadent. I liked the crab; it was soft and plentiful. The dish I ordered was so rich I am REALLY glad I ordered the half entree size. Wow!

Michael ordered the steak of the day from a local Oregon Rancher. It came with scalloped potatoes, mushrooms (yuck) and sweet potato fries. He said it was the best steak he’s had in Portland. I had one bite and immediately had Entree Envy.  I will definitely be ordering a steak there next time.

Another reason I ordered the small entree instead of the large was that I wanted to have room for dessert. Michael and I split the Creme Brulee. It was the perfect end to a great meal!

After dessert we headed downtown to the Shanghai Tunnel Bar to meet up with friends.

We had such a great time! It was so much fun hanging out with them. I bought Michael one drink and myself one beer and we both sucked down lots of water. I was feeling really good and despite leaving a bit before the stroke of midnight I enjoyed myself with my friends. We got home just in time to celebrate 1/1/11 together. It was a wonderful night!

Happy New Year!

QUESTION: How was your New Year’s Eve?