Joe and I are both huge romantics, so everyone always asks us what we did for Valentine's Day. When it comes down to it, Joe and I simply love any excuse to celebrate. Most people celebrate holidays on just one day, but if we can, we prefer to make a week of it. This year we decided to have a weekend getaway in Astoria the weekend after Valentine's...but of course we planned on celebrating the day of too. Joe told me that he would be cooking me dinner that night and that we could exchange gifts then.
Valentine's fell on a Tuesday so we were both working as usual, him in downtown and me in my home office, when all of a sudden the doorbell rang! Knowing Joe, I wouldn't have been surprised to find a deliveryman at the door with something sweet, just to make my day. But low and behold, it was JOE himself!!! He had picked up flowers (from my favorite florist, Spellbound Flowers!) and some yummy strawberry-basil chocolate for me, and drove ALL the way home during his lunch break just to deliver them in person, give me a kiss, and then drive back to work! What a sweetheart!!! Sigh....sometimes I think this man isn't real. But wait.... there's MORE?!
Several hours later, after the shock and delightful surprise of flowers and chocolate, Joe arrived home to cook me dinner. (Gosh this man is amazing! Seriously... men out there, are you taking notes? Because Joe is a good one to take notes from!) But back to my story.... so Joe starts making dinner, sets the table, lights some candles, puts on some romantic music, leads me to my seat (in our dining room), and welcomes me to "Chez Joe": A restaurant (seating for two) with a four-course menu modeled after one of our favorite German restaurants, which sadly, is now closed. Reindlander would be happy to know, though, that Joe definitely did their restaurant justice. It felt just like we were back there eating at our favorite booth.
Our first course was Reindlander's signature swiss cheese fondue with rye bread, paired with a sweet Oregon pinot noir.
....followed by Caesar salad, complete with home-made croutons and, my favorite, an extra side of fresh lemon.
The main course was a chicken breast schnitzel (breaded to PERFECTION), with potatoes, asparagus, and a caper lemon pan sauce.
And for dessert, a delicious molten chocolate cake, flawlessly gooey in the center, topped with ice cream, served with strawberry and basil accents, and dusted with powdered sugar (perfectly matching my chocolate from earlier in the day. How clever, Joe!)
After Dinner I surprised Joe with a tricky little scavenger hunt. Suffice it to say, puzzle pieces were hidden all over the house... which, when put together led to two separate riddles, leading him to his respective presents: a video game, and a new vinyl record. Unfortunately, in my excitement for him to find the puzzle pieces, I forgot to document the event, so I have no actual photos to show for it. But let's face it, his present deserves to be featured. :) Tomorrow Joe and I will be off for more adventures at the Oregon coast in Astoria! I hope you all had a wonderful Valentine's/Galentine's day too!
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*Disclaimer... this blog post consists of a variety of iPhone photos, DSLR photos, varying levels of lighting (thanks, light-dimmers), and brightly colored (soon-to-be-repainted) walls that cast yellow onto everything. All that to say, please don't judge too harshly if the colors are all over the place. ;)