Friday, April 25, 2008

the big easy

about 6 years ago i joined a playgroup. we had so much fun talking each week that we decided to start meeting sans kids. the first couple of years we met at starbuck's on sunday evenings. one night we starting talking about how we never get to go out to eat anymore. we all agreed that while starbuck's is great, we should start meeting at restaurants. not just any restaurants, local ones.

for the last 4 years, about once a month, ashlee picks a place. we have been to mexican, thai, ethiopian, caribbean, mediterranean, italian, french, etc. local restaurants, usually byob, and usually the owners themselves serving us or coming out to tell us about their places.

at first i was reluctant, this monthly ritual took me out of my comfort zone. by comfort zone, i mean ordering a cheeseburger at every chain restaurant in pittsburgh. i like all kinds of foods, but i usually chicken out and order the burger for fear of getting something k would deem, "yucky!"

being at restaurants that don't have cheeseburgers on the menus forced me to try something new. and for that i am grateful to ashlee and the moms. i have tasted lots of what pittsburgh has to offer, and i have not been disappointed once.

last night we headed to east pittsburgh to a taste of new orleans. owned by a transplanted katrina survivor, and known for take-out, we decided to give it a try. i ordered red beans and rice with a fried pork chop and smooth potato salad. i drank water, (because i'm healthy now, ya'll!) but they also had coffee from new orleans. it was a yummy dinner and the bread pudding was so good it made me think i might like bread pudding. i even ate raisins...

it was a success - i am looking forward to crepes in may.

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