Monday, July 25, 2016

Home again - nuntium duocentesimum tricesimum sextum

Now back to Minnesota.  It was a marvelous week with many fun things but as always it's a delight to be home too. Here's a little motif that I made with sewing thread while in Birmingham.  It's not my favorite but it was part of a gift.  It's based on something I saw on Pinterest although not nearly as nice.  It was part of gift for our hostess/friend.  I would have preferred to do something else but it needed to fit in a certain space and all my books were at home!  Trust me, the original is lovely!

On Friday night we went to a posh (even has a Michelin star) restaurant in the neighborhood.  It's called Simpsons.  The food is absolutely delightful and the service was outstanding.  (Here starts my career as a food critic- remember when!).  The presentation of the food was quite beautiful although some of it was a bit over-the-top for this North Dakota girl. (You didn't know I grew up in ND, did you?)  Sometimes, I think my ND upbringing gives me a bit of what I call "Emperor's New Clothes" syndrome.  This is where I look at things and think "that's ridiculous" while others around me exclaim about the "beauty", "intensity", "innovation", etc.  Here are some pictures from our amazing meal. 

Starters for my friends- looked beautiful but contained seafood which I can't eat.  See the rock in the back on the right?  It was chilled and the sauce for dipping is that creamy stuff on the top.  Beautiful and yummy, but in my opinion, ridiculous.

My starter- yum!

Appetizer with scallops- for my friends

The bread- the rolls on the right are made with olive tapenade.  I could have eaten just those!
My appetizer- it was delightful

Something called Ox Cheek (dumb name) but WOW!

The lamb course with some veg, both amazing.

The "pre-dessert"- seriously?  But wow- mango crust with lemon curd something and shortbread crumbs. 

And dessert.  Something cleverly named "Dessert around a Peach".  But it was so wonderful.  It had white chocolate and more white chocolate called aero, meaning it was puffed somehow with raspberries and lavender

And with our expresso/cappuccino came a little bag called "pick and mix" which was full of the most delightful candies.

Here's a picture of our (second) Full English.  I did  not have the tomato although it was available.  

And to end, here we are on the terrace of her house with our afternoon Cava.

What a trip!

( I just re-read this post and laughed at all my "delightful"s but truly it was!)


  1. Lovely flower, I like the pattern and well done on finding it Pinterest.
    It looks a lovely meal and really interesting dishes.
    Full English, where's the mushrooms, hash browns and black pudding,??
    I am glad you enjoyed your stay and you picked the best week of the year to come over, it's now a lot cooler I think you took the heat with you.
    I am glad you had an interesting visit

  2. Love that tatted flower!!!! :)

  3. Wow Michelle you really must have had an amazing time in England and your hostess sounds incredible. Your pictures of the wonderful food look wonderful, presentation makes all the difference. I like your little flower, beautiful colours, but it must be nice to be home

  4. I'd be inclined to say 'ridiculous' as well, but the food is beautifully presented. The flower is sweet, I like it.

  5. I'm pretty sure I could not figure out how to duplicate a pattern from a picture. Your flower is very pretty. North Dakota!? My Grandpa Duffy lived in Bismarck. I have two uncles who live in North Dakota, one a year older than me, the other a year younger.

  6. This has been a very enjoyable series of posts about your trip to England. Glad you had a great visit with your friend! The photos of the food are amazing, and I thought the last one was taken at the restaurant - not the terrace of your friend's house! What a beautiful setting!

    I think the flower is excellent - I'm sure she appreciated it!

  7. When I see such exquisitely plated gourmet food, I can't help but think of the hands handling all that plating; and of the number of dishes that would need to be cleaned to make those tiny helpings & multiple courses ! Just being practical, though the aesthetics & pleasure are undeniable :-)
    Your starter looks like a sago papad/papadum ?

    Cute flower - I remember seeing it on pinterest.


gratias maximas- it's wonderful to hear what you have to say!