Sunday, May 2, 2010

The Big Chill

The "Michigan Group" met Saturday morning and drove to the "Gate Way Arch". If you are not familiar you can go on "google" to get the history and details. It is impressive.
Underground, at the arch are historic displays, gift shops, theatres and an information center. We were there not only to see the arch but to view the half hour documentary, done by Charles Guggenheim, on it's construction. The film is as exciting as the structure, a "don't miss".
From there is was off to the "St. Louis City Sculpture Garden", in the heart of downtown. A full 2 block area which has been beautifully landscaped, planted and full of modern sculpture, Jim Dine to Mark De Suvero. As part of this development "The Terrace View" restaurants sits at 810 Chestnut St phone 314-436-8855. It is built almost entirely of glass and has unobstructed views of the whole area. They serve everything from sandwiches and salads to St. Louis Ravioli and one or two "specials" I chose a Chesapeake Bay fish, whose name escapes me, I should take notes. It was a nice size portion, grilled and served on a warm, lightly dressed, chopped slaw.

The afternoon was a delight. The Missouri Botanical Gardens (Shaw's Garden) are world famous and the oldest (1851) Botanical Garden in this country. The director, who has had the job for 33 years, Peter Raven, is a patient of the group member from St. Louis, and he had requested that we all be his guest for a private tour, which he lead. I am not a "garden person" but one would have to be blind an a lot more of a clod, to not be greatly impresses and awed. The tour was by tram and the only draw back was the inclement weather, wind, drizzle and some rain.
We left early and luckily stepped into the motel lobby as the sky's opened with cloud bursts, heavy wind and a small tornado (oxymoron) in west St. Louis county.
Dinner that night was "carry in Chinese", planed before the storm, for 17 topped by 2 cakes and pints of Graeters.
The next morning we gathered for the last event at "Vin de Set" 2017 Chouteau Ave, St. Louis-phone314-241-8989. "Vin de Set" is under the same management as "Eleven-Eleven", reported on earlier. On Sundays they serve only a buffet, which lacks nothing. The word awesome, in my opinion, is much overused but I know nothing better to describe the unreadable offerings. Since it was approximately ten-thirty those with will power had omelets, made to order, breakfast potato's, breakfast meat, baked goods, fresh fruit, etc. I on the other hand had prime rib, eggs Benedict, nova scotia salmon, shrimp and artichoke salad. While some of the others split strawberry short cake or a rich double chocolate cake I went for the Cherry Pie which a chef heated and topped with Vanilla Ice Cream, as if I hadn't had enough Graeters the night before.

One of the couples had left on an early morning plane, to return to California, for a wedding, and the rest of us split up around noon. Marilyn and I had chosen to stay an extra day to visit with friends and so in the afternoon we did just that as well as drive our Granddaughter, who was returning to her job in Sidney MT to the airport.
That evening, with a friend, we ate dinner A "Oceano" in Clayton MO. A seafood place which remains open on Sunday night. After my Bombay I tried to make amends with a cup of seafood chowder, too thick, and an excellent salad with a small piece of grilled Salmon on top.
The table had a warm rhubarb, berry cobbler, but guilt prevailed and I had only one taste, while the two women joined the "clean plate club".
The next morning we embarked on out 6 1/2 hour journey home with several brief stops, one including very good bowls of soup at "Culver's" in Corydon IN. Dinner Monday evening was refrigerator "nibbles" while we caught up on mail and laundry. End of a wonderful weekend.

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