My Summer Vacation by Rose Rings

Well - I know it been a long time since I have blogged. Sorry about that! At first it was just work and all the other various business of life - then I went on vacation! Woohoo! Yeah! I took a whole three weeks off from the rat race. Man did it feel good...there is nothing like letting go and not giving a flying crap about the minutia of your work. Of course that doesn't mean that I did have anything to do. First we went to Kansas City and visited friends there. Yes I did try some Barbecue. We were taken to Rosedale's Barbeque - a barbecue place in Kansas City started in 1934. Oh my god - I have never eaten so much in my life. I split a slab of ribs with my friend Eric, and it was still too much. No little dinky baby backs here! Here is a picture of Annie's plate. She got a half rack, plus three sides including some great french fries. All that for $8.95. I will say, I was not fond of their sauce. I am sure that in Kansas City that is tantamount to sacrilege, but it was way to ketchup-y and tasted strongly of celery seed. Fortunately, the meat was so good it didn't need any sauce.

After I got back to St. Louis, people were asking me if I have tried the "Brain on a Bun". I was told that it was a KC specialty along with the 'cue. Now I like a good brain as much as the next guy, but since Mad Cow Disease has come along, I am very hesitant to eat it. I used to eat it all the time with my dad. It is very creamy, like soft scrambled eggs. Maybe once I can be sure I won't die in a horrible prolonged manner, I might try the brain on a bun next time we are in KC.

If you are lucky enough to find yourself traveling along I-70 between St. Louis and Kansas City, keep an eye out for a place called Bobbers. I can't tell you which exit, but they have plenty of signs along the interstate to give you a heads up. Here is kinda how the whole adventure went. As we are driving down the highway back from Kansas City, we were getting pretty damn hungry. Now I had seen the billboards for Bobbers. Tony starts making fun of name. "Sounds like they should be selling bait!" "Maybe the specialty of the house isn't the food!" and so on. (Most can't be repeated in front of a family viewing audience.) Finally, we pull off of the highway at the proper exit, and start looking at the restaurants. A 'cue joint. Nope - just ate 'cue. A bar and grill. Nope - not open. Fast food. Nope - hatin' the fast food by now. So Tony was over ruled by the rest of the car and we headed over to Bobbers.
Here was the first good sign. The parking lot was full at 1:30 in the afternoon. Second good sign. Lots and lots of old timers gathered at the counters eating. Tony asked one of them if the food was good. He said he had been coming there for years and it was the best food within 50 miles. He recommended to Lunch Buffet and mentioned the baked chicken in particular. We opted for the dining room with a table close to the buffet. The waitress rocked. She kept filling up our drinks and clearing the old plates away without a second thought, all the while making small talk with her regulars. The food was really really good. No food service, except the dinner rolls (which were hard). Baked chicken, BBQ ribs,homemade Salisbury steak, fresh corn in butter sauce(Best corn on a buffet ever.), new potatoes cooked with bacon, mashed taters and gravy (gravy was homemade) plus more stuff I can't remember. Great salad bar with fresh ingredient including the best tomatoes I have ever had in a restaurant. I went back for extra. All this for $8.95 a person. So there Tony! You can't poke fun now! St. Louis was - as always - a blast . We attended the Midwest Magic Jubliee and ran a party suite all three nights of the convention. My theory about running parties at conventions - add booze, stir and wait to be amused. I have rarely been disappointed. We pulled into town on Wednesday and started setting up shop in the suite when several people showed up out of the blue and started a "pre-con" party. This pretty much set the tone for the rest of the weekend. We had crazy drunk chicks, foot magic, guys offering to nail a body part (yes-that part) to a board for money, balloon twisters - it was a lot of fun. We also saw some great magic - and unfortunately, some really really really bad magic. The performing highlight of the convention was watching Tom Burgoon and Mike Finney MC the evening shows. If you get a chance to see either of these guy perform - do it! (Yes, that is me in the leopard print fez tending bar!) Oh this is a food blog isn't it? Well we ate at Las Palmas. Again. Awesome food as in years past. Great staff. Good prices. If you are near the airport in St Louis - try to stop by.

We also ate at India Palace. It is has the strangest location ever. It is on the top floor of a small hotel beside the St. Louis airport. You can watch planes arrive and depart during dinner. The really bad news - it is almost impossible to get to now - thanks to some creative construction on the part of MDOT. Take the time to get a hybrid view map via Google map before you go. I wished we had before we left the hotel. It would have prevented much anxiety on our part.

Definitely worth the trouble though - one of the best Indian buffets I've been to in a while. A nice mix of vegetarian and meat dishes - pretty typical offerings with things like Lentil Dal, Chicken Tika, "Tempura" spinach leaves, and mini dosas plus a nice selection of pickles and salads. The buffet became a "must visit when in town" eating experience.

Just wanted to mention this, India Palace had goat. I like goat curry. Goat is damn tasty. Yes it has a pronounced flavor, and that's OK in my book. India Palace had goat curry with the bones still in. The people at the next table were flipping out about that. Lord forbid - they had to work to get the meat offa the bones. So sad... if you don't like it - leave it in the tray! I will gladly jump on the grenade and eat an extra helping so it doesn't go to waste.

So you think to yourself, "Wow! Rosie had a great time in St. Louis and Kansas city - she must be ready to go home!" And you would be wrong... As is our want, we headed out to the Lake of the Ozarks for three days. We swam. We drank. We ate - boy, did we eat. We ate at
Kay’s Home Cooking again. You can check out my adventures there from the last time we were at the lake.

I also got to cook this time.
That's the really nice thing about having a cabin with a full kitchen - you have the option of making something great to eat instead of eating out all the time. I went and bought some really nice two inch thick ribeye steaks and grilled them bad boys up. Along with hobo packets and a huge salad it was one of the best meals we ate on vacation. Not that I am tooting my own horn or anything...but I can make a nice dinner when I want to.

There was a little bit of a disagreement with our host, however. I love Steve. Steve is a wonderful, generous and awesome friend who we love hanging out with. However, his one fault is that he likes to marinate steaks in Italian Dressing. Oh. My. God. How can anyone ruin a beautiful piece of meat by throwing Seven Seas Italian on it is beyond my comprehension. I like a little garlic, sure. I like salt and pepper - it's a given. But vinegar! Pa-leeeeze. It pickles the beef and hide the flavor of the meat itself. Sorry Steve - not gonna happen on my watch. You can mangle your meat as you see fit once I leave.

So that was my big summer trip! I had another week's vacation after I got home and I'll tell you about it later... but for now - that's all folks!