September 8, 2011

Home, Sweet Home

Hey there! It's been a while, I know. We got back from Ohio much later than expected on Monday night due to the rain in D.C. and last night was my first choir rehearsal of the new season, so I haven't had time to sit down and write anything. Lots to share, though!

We had an outstanding time in Columbus. I grew up there and went to 3 of my 4 years of college at Ohio State, so I always enjoy coming back and visiting. MG had only been there once before, for a 24-hour whirlwind tour last fall, so I wanted to make sure I took him to as many of my favorite places as we could manage.

Since we left right after work on Friday, we hadn't eaten dinner when we arrived. After a quick stop at our friend's house to drop off our bags, we headed out to meet up with another friend at Dirty Frank's Hotdog Palace. Dirty Frank's is relatively new, but a big hit in Columbus. I'd been there once before and I couldn't wait to take MG. They have a very extensive list of hotdogs on the menu and are vegetarian and vegan-friendly. We had a hard time choosing from all the options, but in the end we shared a vegetarian Seoul Dog (kim chee and sriracha on a Tofurky dog), a vegetarian Sauerkraut Dog (sauerkraut, spicy brown mustard and onions on a vegetarian polish sausage) and a Chili Dog with vegetarian coney sauce, onions, yellow mustard and sharp cheddar on a Tofurky dog.

Great Lakes Brewing Company Oktoberfest on tap!

Our selections, with an order of tater tots to share.

The fun decor - a Thin Lizzy painting.

Saturday morning we got up and had a quick, delicious breakfast of peanut butter toast, fruit and coffee before heading off to the game. We also had a feline visitor to keep us company as we breakfasted.

On the way to the stadium we stopped at a local coffeeshop for some coffees and a chocolate chip scone for MG (I did have a bite and it was pretty freakin' good).

We finally made it! I love the Horseshoe.

After an incredibly hot (95 degrees) football game (OSU - 42, Akron - zip! hehe), we met up with my dad and his wife for dinner at a favorite restaurant of theirs - Bon Vie Bistro.

I started with a nice side salad with chopped egg.

For my entree, grilled salmon with brown basmati rice, steamed veggies and a soy-ginger butter sauce on the side.

Sunday, my mom drove down from Akron and met up with us at Block's Bagels, a Columbus institution. My mom picked up a dozen assorted and a black and white cookie to take back up to Akron.
Lox on one half, whitefish salad on the other. Pickle on the side!

It rained a whole lot on Sunday, so we decided to make a nice, relaxing dinner at home with our friend that was hosting us.

We started with some Ethiopian collard green phyllo pockets, prepared by our friend's mom who is a professional caterer, artist and all around amazing person.

We grilled some lamb kebabs with a mint-rosemary marinade.

A nice bottle of red.

A whole mess of grilled and roasted veggies!
Parsnips, turnips, sweet potato, onion, beets, brussels sprouts and asparagus.

I was a little stuffed after this meal.

MG enjoys an after dinner tea from a traditional Argentinian matte cup.

After we digested a bit, we headed to Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams. Which is freaking AMAZING. It's by far the best ice cream I've ever had, and I make it a point to get it whenever I'm in Columbus. I also discovered that they will ship it to you at a cost, which is dangerous information for my weight and my checking account balance.

I got a small with half a scoop each of Queen City Cayenne (chocolate with a hit of cayenne) and Salty Caramel.  MG had Queen City Cayenne and Rockmill Golden Ale and Apricots. Everything was ridiculously delicious and creamy and decadent. I'm drooling just thinking about it.

Monday we had a late afternoon flight home, so after a fantastic 6 mile run along the new Alum Creek Trail we headed up to meet our friend for lunch at Easton, a massive shopping area not too far from the airport. We had originally planned to eat at Northstar Cafe, a favorite spot of mine for vegetarian and local fare, including the best veggie burger I have ever eaten. But it was closed for the holiday! Disappointing. Luckily, there was a Turkish restaurant not too far away, so we didn't stay hungry for long.

We ate up these dolmades before I remembered to take a picture.

I went with a salad with feta, olives, tomatoes and cucumber, with lemon vinaigrette on the side.

And a falafel appetizer with tahini sauce!
Fantastic and filling.

Turkish coffee for dessert.

After lunch we shopped for a few hours and stopped at Cup of Joe for one last coffee before heading over to the airport. All in all it was a wonderful and delicious weekend. I miss Ohio already, but luckily there are too many awesome people there for me to stay away too long. :)

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