Tuesday, September 10, 2013


Something nice and round about that number, I guess.

It was a relaxed day and a good one. Got up without the alarm, made myself breakfast and chilled. Checked email, let work know I wouldn't be on unless ecomms popped up or hell froze over, goofed off a bit. Around lunchtime, I rousted the Hubs and we went to Echoview Fiber Mill here in town. Very small, nifty place...we got a mini tour, chatted up a nice lady and her golden retriever, and I bought a couple of hanks of alpaca.

Then we headed into town. We were far too early for dinner, so we took a meandering route to French Broad River Park and walked a bit. Headed back to town only to discover that the restaurant we were planning to hit doesn't open til 5PM, so with time still to kill, we wandered Lexington Avenue and cased some shops we hadn't popped into before. Hubs made the point that we should really take a day each weekend, park downtown, and walk a particular street to learn all the gems that are down there. Local indy business doesn't have to mean overpriced, and there's so much neat stuff in those stores.

We dined at Bouchon. My city brain was originally craving something more canned, like Cheesecake Factory, which thankfully we don't have in Asheville, until I remembered just how excellent the farm-to-table sitch is here. A little Googling and a craving for French Onion Soup led me to Bouchon, which did not disappoint. Les is a duck fan, and their roasted half duck with cocoa nibs and orange sauce was the best he's ever had. I enjoyed the steak au poivre with fresh steamed veggies and fries, and a house red, and sighed with every bite.

We popped into French Broad for cake to go (first time I've ever been able to walk right up to the counter!). I was half delighted to discover that the cake slice I chose was just OK, that I could actually make it better, thanks to a friend's recipe. But I will always swear by that place for their truffles and brownies, at least; it's really an extraordinary chocolate shop!

It was a wonderful year for gifties: Dr. Hyman's book, which I've been dying for in hardcover; an artisan baking book, which was a delightful surprise from one of my oldest friends; 2 seasons of Law & Order: UK (does the Hubs know me or what?); and a pair of Minnetonkas which should hit my doorstep today!

I'm buried in work between now and the PA trip, so if it goes quiet here, that's why. Have a great week, y'all!

Image from here.

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