Yummy Bites and Muddy Boots

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend! It was actually pretty nice here in Oregon this weekend and Michael and I enjoyed some outdoor activities in Hood River. As kind of a “thank you” for letting his friend Jeremy stay with us for these last two weeks Michael took me on a little mini-break to Hood River. We had to pick up our case of wine from Quenett anyway so we packed up our hiking and biking gear and booked a room at the Hood River Hotel for one night.

Our room was tiny but honestly I don’t need much in a hotel room–especially when most activities are going to be outside. It was cheap and suited our purposes. The place was very, very old. Inside they decorated the joint with the old photos of the place. It was cool to see the photos of how the small town looked back in 1911. The first stop we made when we arrived was to the restaurant on the hill, Big Horse Brewpub, we like to go to for lunch. I love their fish tacos and order them every time. πŸ™‚

I had a diet coke with lunch. Michael ordered the chicken sandwich with fries (their fries are great) and an IPA.

Saturday was a bit overcast, cloudy and chilly. We decided to wait until Sunday to ride bikes. Instead, we headed out after lunch for a hike up the Hood River Mountain Trail. It was the same trail we did last summer but this time we tried to hike the whole loop.

It was really muddy on the trail but not intolerable. It was also super windy! Like if I weighed about 15 pounds less I would have been blown away by the 30 mph winds! At one point at the top of the mountain the wind was so loud in the trees that we couldn’t hear each other talking.

It was a really nice hike and we saw a few other people on the trail, plus one trail runner. I could tell we were about three weeks early for the wildflowers. I think the whole hillside will be covered with them soon. One of these days I WILL time it right and see the wildflowers blooming in the Gorge.

I guess it was also the Cherry Blossom Festival in Hood River this weekend but we didn’t partake in any of the events, or do the Fruit Loop. We just didn’t have time. Plus the weather has been so crappy and cold lately that the trees are late in blooming.

So we tried to continue on the trail because it was supposed to be a loop. The trail continued to go further and further in the wrong directions, dark clouds were looming in the distance (read: downpour coming) and the wind was just too strong. We ended up turning around and going back the way we came to the car. It was a good hike and we beat the rain!

I should also mention that this weekend I decided to take a break from my normal workout routine AND not count my calories. I just needed a day to disconnect from all of it so Saturday was that day. I ate whatever I wanted, without really going overboard in my opinion, and didn’t even mentally calculate how many calories I was consuming. It was nice.


Time: 1:22

Calories Burned: 443

Miles Hiked: Who knows?

We climbed back in the car and headed back down the super dilapidated, totally frighteningly narrow road and saw a girl riding her bike up it!Β  Michael and I both gave her “thumbs up” signs as we drove by and she smiled. She was a rockstar in my book!

We got back to town and checked into our hotel room, brought the bikes up to the room to store and then headed out for the afternoon!


I’ll Take a Case of Wine Please

Over the summer Michael and I went to Hood River, Oregon quite a bit. We spent our 2 years anniversary there, we took his visiting family there for a day trip and we’ve previously enjoyed wine tasting in the Gorge. This last time we were in Hood River we signed up for the Wine Club at our favorite winery: Quenett. Being part of the Wine Club meant free tastings, discounts on wine (25% off), plus two parties a year where we can pick up our case of discounted wine.

The Wine Party was held in The Dalles, Oregon instead of Hood River. It was about a 20 mile longer drive, but it wasn’t too bad. The traffic was light and the rain was relaxing. The Sunshine Mill used to be a flour mill. They’ve converted the space to shops and a winery. It was a really cool space.

I love gritty, industrial, old brick buildings.

We could arrive anytime between 4-11pm. The drive took longer than we expected and we got a later start. We arrived about 6pm. The place was packed by then. People were wine tasting, munching on appetizers, and listening to the band.

To be honest, the food was a bit disappointing. They had a bunch of different kinds of cheese, crackers and salami (which were all pretty good) but there was also a bunch of food in crockpots that wasn’t very good. Ravioli that was a bit too chewy, soups or something–hard to tell, and some potatoes, rice and other unknown things in crockpots. But we weren’t expecting the food selection to be great and had planned on going somewhere else for dinner (before we even got there).

The wine tasting was definitely good! They had our favorite reds and whites available for tasting. We sipped our wine and wandered around the old mill.

I loved the chandeliers. They were made out of Christmas lights and old wine bottles.

We wandered around and checked out the the nooks and crannies of the old mill.

The band was pretty good. They played classic hits and then towards the end of the evening there was a local singer that sang original country songs. I’m not a country music fan (except for the Dixie Chicks) but the music was decent. He had a good voice.

While I love all of the Quenett wines, my tastes seem to change with each visit. Last time I was absolutely in love with their Viognier and the Nirvana blend.

This time, I was loving the Sangiovese and the Barbera–full bodied reds with a wonderfully smooth finish. They weren’t overpowering like some reds can be.

We were getting tired and had a long drive home so we bought our case of wine–a mixture of reds and whites–and hit the road.

The drive home through The Gorge was a bit scary. It was pitch black out and raining plus we’re in the middle of nowhere. But we got home okay and picked up a Papa Murphy’s deLite pizza. We were both tired and not in the mood to cook or go out to eat.

I put away all the wine we got.

Even with wine tasting I came in under my calories for the day. I don’t know how because I felt like I was snacking all day.

Instead of more wine, I had water for dinner. πŸ˜‰

It was a good night!

On another note: Good luck to all the runners in today’s Portland Marathon! My heart goes out to you running in today’s UGLY rainy weather!

QUESTION: What is your favorite wine currently?