Game of Elk

I love game meat. In fact, it’s about the only red meat my body can digest. I have enjoyed venison for ages. And when I travel to great places around the world I love trying new stuff. Now, there is also ‘domestic’ game meat — as in the stuff we have here. I say that because we don’t have my favorite, warthog, which I enjoyed in South Africa, here.

Anyway, last time I was in Colorado, Steamboat (Springs) to be precise, I enjoyed a very nice dinner at Mahogany Ridge Brewery & Grill and was able to expand my game tastes/tastings.

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After looking over the menu several times, the elk was calling my name but the cost was not exactly low ($40). But, decided I had to give it a try. After speaking to the server, she mentioned the portion was quite hefty, so the two of us at the table decided to split that along with a house salad, oh and some vino (which of course came out well before the food)!

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The elk was nice, traditional game meat. Very chewy, much more so than venison. It was not my favorite game meat ever but would definitely eat it again if offered.

Ayse Meze Lounge

Visited a nice restaurant in Frederick, MD that provides ‘the best of Greek, Turkish and Lebanese Cuisine in small dishes.’ This was Ayse Meze Lounge.

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Went for lunch, and while they have a lunch menu, was easier to look over the dinner menu with all the small plates. They say to get about 3 per person. There were so many choices that it was hard to pick! While milling things over we of course started with some babaghanoush. I was thrilled with this because it is very hard to find it without dairy.  Bring it on! So smooth!

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Then we opted for the Mantar – mushrooms, almonds, dates, oregano, brandy. Such and amazing taste. Could have eaten pounds of this stuff.

 

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Next was Pancar – roasted beets, arugula, manouri, walnuts, sherry dressing. The cheese on top is goat cheese so loved that I was able to eat it!

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Then Enginar – baby artichokes, roasted peppers, grilled onions.

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We also had some dolmas, but I didn’t get a picture of those. The lunch was very nice and very filling! Five plates/meze between two of us was more more more than enough!! They have an outdoor seating area that is quite nice and evening entertainment. Will definitely check this place out again.

Pacci’s Trattoria

Awhile back checked out an Italian restaurant I had heard about in the Silver Spring/Forest Glen area of DC — Pacci’s Trattoria.

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They have a pretty traditional Italian menu, nothing overly fancy. After we had plenty of time to look over the menu, we finally got a waiter. Not overly eager, rattled off the specials, not very understandable (extremely heavy Italian accent). After that, stuck to the menu.¬† I decided to go with Piattone di Pacci’s, signature sample platter features Bruschetta al Pomodoro, buffalo mozzarella (skipped that), smoked salmon rolls, artichokes, olives, and prosciutto wrapped cantaloupe.

 

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My friend opted for a Pacci’s salad, baby spinach, arugula, cucumbers, fresh mozzarella, onions, nuts, cranberries, pears and our homemade honey balsamic vinaigrette and Ravioli alla Florentine cheese ravioli with spinach, artichoke and garlic cream sauce; topped with shaved parmesan.

 

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The food was all pretty good, but nothing spectacular/out of the ordinary. The service was just terrible though. Even though I told the waiter that I was ordering¬† a (large) appetizer as my entree, he brought it out first. Then the pasta dish took maybe half an hour+. And the restaurant was not at all busy. You always have to try a place…