I spent last night alone at the Marriott in Pasadena.
I drove up by myself, walked all over Old Town, popped into a few little shops, and took myself out to Il Fornaio too.
I had forgotten how much I enjoy eating all by myself in a nice restaurant.
It’s so fun to people watch, and somehow, the solitude makes you really savor the textures, colors and flavors of your food.
I started with a Caesar salad. It was very fresh and just the right size, but I was not a fan of the croutons. There were only three and they were almost too crunchy to eat.
The bread that came with the meal was similarly crunchy and also difficult to eat. The olive oil and balsamic vinegar helped.
Next, I enjoyed ravioli filled with butternut squash and walnuts. It was served with brown butter, tomato sauce, and crispy sage.
The sage was great. It was actually dipped in something a little denser than a tempura batter and then fried. It was unusual and a very welcome addition to the plate.
My only disappointment with the entree was the amount of the tomato sauce. The ravioli needed a little more oomph, but there wasn’t a lot of that sauce to do it. The flavors were all wonderful, just not quite proportioned properly.
Of course, none of that stopped me from cleaning my plate. 😀
I got dessert too. I ordered by sight from the cart and really didn’t know what I was in for. To say I was pleasantly surprised is an understatement. It was possibly the best chocolate mousse I’ve ever eaten. It included a layer of fresh raspberries and it came in a pool of cream fraiche and raspberry coulis. Another raspberry sat on top. Delicious.
The entire day was delightful.
And long overdue.
I haven’t needed a break that badly in quite a while. 😐
This morning I got up early, ate some cereal in my room, then drove to the Rose Bowl to meet a friend for the monthly flea market.
We both had some cash to burn this time, so it was a lot of fun.
When our feet could take no more, we drove back into town, bought a couple of teeny bird figurines at Goldbug, ate a very pleasant, leisurely meal at Mi Piace, and then looked at every single item in Lula Mae. I LOVE that place. So sweet.
We parted company around 4:00 p.m.
On the way home, I stopped at Cost Plus World Market to finish out my fun.
Now, I am exhausted and ready to hibernate.
I’ll post pictures of my new treasures in a couple of days.
I hope you had a good weekend too!