The boyf's birthday is tomorrow! Since we'll be spending a good chunk of it on the plane to Las Vegas, I needed to use today to treat him to a special birthday meal. Since Mexican is his favorite cuisine, I chose Mesa Grill, one of Bobby Flay's restaurants. And would you believe that I ran into Gena again on the way there? Not on purpose this time! I'm telling you, fate has brought us together.
Since no good birthday meal for my man is complete without a margarita, the boyf took the waiter's recommendation and ordered Bobby Flay's signature version, which includes cactus pear and agave and is not girly-looking in the slightest. ("It has salt!")
And while we didn't attack the bread basket very enthusiastically, we did split open the one corn muffin because it looked intriguing. Rightly so! It was made with a combination of blue and yellow corn - just as savory and delicious as it looks.
I had a margarita of my own, which was just a classic on the rocks. It was strong enough to knock a grown man down, though, so I didn't make it much past the 1/3 mark. I started to feel a buzz too. That's the kind of cheap date I am.
I also needed more food in my belly before pounding the sauce, so I was glad when my appetizer arrived: Grilled Asparagus Salad with Toasted Pecans, Maytag Blue Cheese, Wild Roasted Mushrooms,+ Red Chile-Mustard Vinaigrette.
As for the boyf, he had Goat Cheese Queso Fundido with Rajas + Blue Corn Tortilla Chips. Mind-blowing.
But the deliciousness of the salad couldn't have prepared me for my entree, which almost seemed as though it must have been created with me in mind: Cornmeal Encrusted Chile Relleno filled with Roasted Eggplant + Manchego Cheese with Sweet Red Pepper Sauce + Balsamic Vinegar.
Please note that Boyf took all his own pictures today! Mad props and snaps.
But seriously, back to the veggies.
Honestly, if you say "eggplant" to me, I'm probably all over before you've even told me how it's prepared. Add manchego, arguably my favorite cheese ever, to the equation and you can do no wrong.
Indeed, wrong not done.
I'll never know if I will live to regret not indulging in Mesa Grill's desserts, because we needed to get some birthday cake for the boyf, and it needed to come from Atlas. I was happy to oblige, because these Vegan Treats are half the price and twice the delicious of most fancy celebrity chef creations.
His was the reliable hazelnut cake, while I tried a new one, which was coconut. Perfection, as usual! White cakes and icings have a propensity toward over-sweetness, but not so with this slice. I didn't get to the end before my stomach began to protest against the onslaught of tastiness, but I was able to enjoy every bite I did have during lunch and dessert without growing a food baby. That is the the mark of meal success!
Now I'm packed, ready to spend the rest of the week in Vegas. I will do my best to keep up with mini cell phone updates throughout each day, but if you haven't heard from me in a while, just know I'm probably off doing something ridiculous in true Vegas fashion. Until then, Elvis has left the building!