Optional page text here. The Beast's Lair: Birthday Report

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Birthday Report

Andi and I had such an amazing time over my birthday weekend. We traveled to Cincinnati for a relaxing night in a super nice downtown hotel. Notice the cool picture below. But one experience of our weekend getaway is worth describing in detail.

As part of our time away, we decided it would be nice to dress up and go out for a nice meal while in Cincinnati. After arriving at the motel and the terror of trying to get around downtown, we decided it best if we stayed inside and ate at one of the hotel's restaurants. So, I put on my best suit and Andi put on an incredible black dress and we set off for the restaurant.

When we arrived, a greeter asked us which restaurant we preferred, the causal dining experience or the formal dining experience. We of course said the formal dining experience. It was our entrance into a new and exotic world.

After being seated, we looked around and noticed that our surroundings were, well, extremely nice. A pianist was playing some familiar melodies in the background (including a great version of Terms of Endearment, see my post on Dick Enberg, the legend). We were greeted by a nice young man who spoke with a ridiculously proper accent. We declined the need for the wine steward. lol. This was starting to get interesting. After another look around the room as our server was getting us menus, we noticed several different people in the restaurant doing what appeared to be their own job. Our menus had arrived, so Andi and I opened them up and started busting out laughing. Not only were the prices for one item more than we pay for 3 normal meals combined, but we literally could not understand one word on the menu. Seriously. The only thing that was somewhat discernible was "beef cheeks" and we didn't really want to know what that was. So, after a few moments, the server comes back and asks us if we have any questions. "Several" I replied. He took the hint and made some suggestions. As he explained the items on the menu, he held his hands firmly behind his back and paced the circumference of the table. He would stop and then point to the next menu item, and then again begin to pace as he described. It was amazing. We took his suggestion by pointing to the item on the menu (no way to pronounce it) and laughed again when he left.

At this point, another guy comes rolling a fairly large table next to our table. Andi and I are completely lost, we have no idea what is going on. Then, out of nowhere, these two huge plates are brought and placed on this table next to us. This guy then takes the plates and says "compliments of my chef, this is a (and then he said something I couldn't repeat)." He places the plates in front of us, and there is little chip thing with all this stuff on top of it. It was about the size of a dime. Hilarious man. So, we ate our little "compliment of the chef" item, and it was pretty good. We did have a discussion as to if we were supposed to use our silverware or not, but we decided to just pick it up with our hands.

What happened next is one of the coolest things that has ever happened to me. It requires a little set up. Apparently, during my enjoyment of the "compliments of the chef", I had moved my forks on the table. They were still there and looked fine, but I must have shifted them in some way. The server who placed our plates in front of us was walking by rather briskly and he looked over at our table. With no exaggeration and in all truthfulness, this guy "jogs" over to our table and without saying a word to me or Andi, reaches down in front of me and moves my forks back to their appropriate position. He then goes on his way. It was simply amazing. I made darn sure to not touch my forks the rest of the meal.

To our delighted surprise, we received another "compliments of the chef", this time we made out something about bleeding oranges. It was pretty good as well, and we used our forks this time. After this "course", my fork guy came back and took my forks and replaced them with a different kind of fork. I just couldn't believe it.

Finally, our meal arrived and it was very good. Two people brought these "domes" to our table and would not place them on the table until they could do it in exact unison. Then, they lifted the domes off the plated to reveal the food underneath. It was a dramatic moment and I wasn't sure if I was supposed to clap or something. I said something like "yes, very nice." Of course, this food is not something I would want to eat everyday, but it was pretty good. The experience made it all worthwhile. Before our dessert, I ordered two "cokes" which was pretty darn funny in itself. But, they took even our cokes very seriously, bringing out two classy glasses and a small bottle, then poured the coke into the glasses for us, leaving about an inch in the bottle.

The dessert was delicious and we finished our meal up. Over all, the experience must have taken an hour and a half, but I hope one day to be able to relive our encounter with a 5 star restaurant.


Anonymous Chao said...

Sounds about medium formal. Full formal you have about 5 or 6 people taking care of your table. LOL

Having been on both sides of that type of thing I must say that it ALWAYS cracks me up.

Good call on the hands by the way, if it is on a cracker then hands is right. ;o)

February 14, 2007 2:37 PM  

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