Thursday, July 18, 2013

When the Cat's Away...The Mice Will Have Fun at Her Expense!

It has been the best day!  I have taken a page from my children and begun celebrating birthday week instead of birthday day.  Today is not actually my birthday, but sweet Luanne took me out for an early birthday lunch.  And did we have fun!  Parker couldn't go with us and we were missing her, sure, but, as the saying goes, when the cat's away...  And, oh, yes, we did make the most of it!

First, we met at our usual place of business, the K Mart parking lot.  And, would you believe it, Luanne was there and in the right place!  But, apparently, some other folks did not get the memo about the spot being reserved, because men with big trucks and boats on trailers were parked in our parking places!  I couldn't pull in beside her, so I had to traipse across the hot parking lot to tell her I was there.  After moving to another section of the parking lot, we jumped in Luanne's car and headed west.

We weren't sure where we were going to eat, but we used our driving time wisely and looked at some different options. Some of the different restaurants we thought about included The Commerce Kitchen, Shae's Express and Lyn's Gracious Goodness.  I knew all of these were good choices, because I have been to them all.  Luanne really wanted me to try something new for my birthday, so we nixed them for a restaurant she had been to, but I had not.  The only trouble with this train of thought was that Luanne did not know the name of the restaurant!  The only thing she knew was that it had numbers in the name and was near GiGi's Cupcakes and The Golden Griffin.   So, I said we needed to go to Whitesburg Drive because I knew GiGi's was on Whitesburg. Oh, you just know where this is headed, don't you?  We get to GiGi's and drive around in circles looking for a restaurant with numbers.  Yep, that's what we were doing, only no numbered restaurants were to be found, so I start pulling up restaurants on my phone.  In the meantime, Luanne is trying to get in touch with her daughter, Lizzy, because they had both been to the restaurant together.  I found a restaurant called 1892, but Urban Spoon gave the address as Winchester Road.  We didn't know where Winchester Road was, but it didn't sound right.  I kept searching and Lu kept trying to get Lizzy.  Finally, and I don't know if it was a glitch on Urban Spoon or not, but finally I find 1892 East Restaurant and Tavern on Pratt Avenue, so we pull it up on maps and head off to see if it could be the restaurant in question.  By the is nowhere near GiGi's Cupcakes...just sayin'!  On the way from Whitesburg to 5 Points, where the navigational system was directing us, Luanne is skeptical.  Nothing is looking familiar and seems much farther away than she remembered...minds play funny tricks when you are our age!  I swear, not until we were right in front of the 1892 East Restaurant and Tavern did she yell, "This is it!"  Ok, I would make fun of her here, but the honest truth is our roles could have been easily reversed.  Our sense of direction has no sense!  Once again, if a man had been with us he would have already jumped off the nearest bridge!  I mean, just the idea of trying to find a restaurant without knowing the name or the location would have been too much for most men I know.  Getting to GiGi's Cupcakes and finding no such restaurant would have ended the adventure right there!  That's why you have to have girlfriends!  Look at all the fun we would have missed!

Anyway, we parked right in front of the restaurant and headed into an unassuming building at the end of a row of shops and businesses.  True to form and even without Parker to make sure, we were the first customers.

 We were seated at a table for two, our drink orders were taken and we studied the menu.
There were many possibilities...a tempura shrimp salad, a grilled vegetable flatbread, a chicken salad sandwich...

We mulled it over a bit and finally made our choices.
Lu decided on a decadent sounding brie and bacon mac and cheese made with rotini pasta, brie cheese sauce, slab bacon lardons and a bread crumb topping.  Wow!  I chose a spicy shrimp sandwich with saute'ed seasoned Gulf shrimp, jicama slaw, house cut fries and a side of smoked jalapeno sauce.  Ok, are you really surprised?  I think I have ordered seafood more times than not on these little adventures.  But, I have to say, almost as much as the shrimp, I was enticed by the jicama slaw and smoky jalapeno sauce!

Our drinks came out first.  Luanne ordered water and I ordered unsweet tea.  When my tea arrived, however, it came with this cute little pitcher of simple syrup, because everyone knows you cannot dissolve sugar in cold iced tea!  I normally drink my tea with no sweetener of any kind, but that pitcher was so cute, I just had to pour a bit syrup into my tea.  A little attention to detail usually ends up being the difference between good and great.  I was beginning to like what I was seeing!

Then came the entrees!  I wish I would have taken a better picture of my sandwich, because at this angle you cannot see the beautiful shrimp nestled between the halves of that bun.  They were lightly saute'ed and tasted just like they had been hauled in from the Gulf right before they were put on the plate.  Honestly, these shrimp were as good as any I have had at the beach.  The tomatoes were fresh, not cold and mushy like they had been stored in the refrigerator and the fries were wonderful, but that smoky jalapeno sauce...yum-o!  I loved it!
Luanne's mac and cheese came served in an iron skillet. Oh, my, goodness!  It was creamy and velvety and rich and full of bits of salty bacon.  Luanne was threatening to pick up the skillet and lick it after she ate everything she could with a fork.  Between the two of us we could probably have been admitted into the Clean Plate Club!  
We were too stuffed to eat dessert, but they did sound wonderful. If they were as good as the rest of our meal, I am sure they are worth another visit.  What I am really wondering is how did I not know about this place before?  As we were getting ready to leave, we realized just how much we were missing Parker, especially since it was time to take our picture and there were only two of us!  We didn't want to cheat 1892 out of a thumbs up.  What to do, what to do???  Luckily, we had an idea.  If only we had one other person who also thought 1892 was as deliciously good as we did and would be willing to have their picture made with us... It is Three Friends after all, not Two!  We looked around and found a couple of willing accomplices.  We got one of the hostesses to take the picture and she got a friend to stand in for Sherri.  I wish I could remember the names of our partners in crime, so I could give them full credit.  I hope if they are reading this they will forgive me and, perhaps leave me their names in a comment below.  If not, I just want to tell them thanks anyway.  They must have thought we were truly crazy! Here's our buddy!

Three Friends and a Fork happily gives 1892 East Restaurant and Tavern
3 Yums UP!

After our fabulous lunch we did a little shopping and look what we found!  We finally have a fork!

 Everybody say a quick prayer that Parker doesn't kill us for our photoshopping! Until next time!
                                                                                           Richi, Luanne and...Sherri, too!

Update:  I took my husband here after telling him about the wonderful shrimp sandwich I enjoyed on my trip with Luanne.  He was all set to order the sandwich and we were both disappointed to find out the shrimp sandwich had been removed from the menu.  We were so sad.  1892 East...that shrimp sandwich was really worth saving!  Please bring it back!

1892 East Restaurant & Tavern on Urbanspoon
Three Friends and a Fork
Three Friends and a Fork

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