Ahhh! The last two days have been great but I'm stuffed to the gills!
Monday, my colleague and I started out our day by both ordering the "American Breakfast" which was two eggs with wheat toast, potatoes, and apple chicken sausage. We both only ate half and then realized we should have just shared.
I took this picture of the dining room during breakfast. The decor is so eclectic. This hotel reminds me of my favorite hotel in Little Rock, Arkansas, Capital Hotel, and an amazing hotel on Mackinac Island, Michigan, Grand Hotel.
After going to the gym we went up to the conference to attend some sessions. By the time my brain was full my belly was empty again. A couple of us walked down the street and ended up at Siegfried's Delicatessen. It was a fantastic German deli and market. I wanted to try everything but ended up getting the turkey reuben. If it wasn't for my colleagues wanting to get back to the conference quickly after lunch I probably would have ended up bringing home a suitcase full of European snacks and goodies.
Monday night, after the conference, was an evening of receptions. My group decided to party hop from event to event. My favorite reception was at the Hope Gallery. It was catered by a company called Culinary Crafts. Not only was their food and service fantastic but they also used bamboo plates and forks which I thought was great!
At the end of the evening we had attended four parties. I had a glass of wine and a water at each party and food only at the Hope Gallery. I thought I was doing great until we decided to go to a bar for one last drink as a group. We ended up at the Red Door which was one of the creepiest bars that I have ever been in. The picture didn't come out very well but this is a monkey holding a monkey skull surrounded by red light. Eek!
My drink, a Vesper Martini, was a bad choice on my part. It's the original James Bond martini which has gin, vodka and lillet with a lemon twist. It was just too strong after drinking wine all night. After the drink at the creepy bar we headed home to our hotel where I fell asleep immediately!
Tuesday morning my head was a little fuzzy, thanks to my martini. I decided the only thing that was going to make me feel better was the breakfast buffet. It was a beautiful spread of food. I ended up eating fruit, a bite of potatoes, one scrambled egg, and something that reminded me of overnight oats with berries on top.
Oh yea... that was just my first plate. It was then followed up by eating almost two whole pieces of bacon, a blintz and a little more than half of that big piece of pound cake you see.
After getting full on breakfast I felt so much better! On to the conference! Tuesday morning was full of walking around the exhibitor floor. After all that walking I was hungry for lunch! Our group went to Caffe Molise. I ended up ordering their special salad which had pan seared cod, tomatoes, artichokes, caper berries and a three berry balsamic dressing on it. It was very good!
Because I was "good" and had a salad I decided to get their homemade coffee gelato for dessert. My lunch was fantastic!
After we finished walking around the exhibitor floor, after lunch, we headed back to the hotel to go to the pool. We sat in the hot tub, then I swam 16 laps, and then I followed it up with relaxing in the hot tub for a couple of minutes. I love pools!
An hour or two later we were at dinner at Spencer's for Steaks & Chops. This was my favorite meal so far at Salt Lake City.
I knew dinner was going to be an overwhelming amount of food and wine so I started out slow. I limited myself to six small rings of calamari and a bite of a colleagues salad. Both fantastic!
A fellow foodie got the crab cakes and they looked so pretty that I had to share.
The fantastic bottle of wine that accompanied our dinner.
Then it was time for the main course. I got the bone-in filet mignon and we had ordered a bunch of sides for table. I know it looks like a lot of food on my plate but I didn't eat it all I just had to taste it all. Mashed sweet potatoes, loaded hash browns, sauteed spinach and tomatoes, asparagus, sauteed mushrooms and cauliflower au gratin.
In addition to all the food you see above my colleague and I share a plate of Alaskan King Crab legs. This was my first time eating them and I'm in love! They remind me of a sweeter version of lobster.
After putting all of this food into my lead foot I decided I had room for a bite of dessert. My friend and I decided to share the strawberry shortcake. I'm not sure if you can tell from this picture but it was the LARGEST strawberry shortcake I have ever seen! We barely made a dent in it.
The little glass of wine you see in the picture is a small glass of Blandy's 5-year old Malmsey Madeira wine. The wine brought back memories. A couple years ago Matt and I took a Transatlantic cruise from Barcelona to Boston. The only port of call was Madeira. A beautiful Portuguese island off the coast of Morocco. While we toured the island we found this little house that was a wine company, Blandy's. We took a little tour of the winery and fell in love with Madeira wine!
A picture of me in a tram to the top of the island in Madeira. One of the cruise ships in the distance was ours.
Back to reality, I'm in Salt Lake City and I'm stuffed!