Wednesday, July 20, 2011

To myself, on my 73rd birthday... *

* Eric wished me a happy 73rd birthday this morning... and while I'm inclined to believe his assessment of my age was an exaggeration, there is the remote possibility that I'm too old to remember my exact age...

It's been a quiet birthday here in Chicago... I was HOPING to maybe head out and see the new Harry Potter movie tonight, but my fellow Chicago-based Potter fans had other plans tonight (they probably didn't want to hang out with a 73-year-old anyway). Ah well, on to plan b -- Rick and I had been wanting to try a restaurant not too far from here called Vermilion, which is billed as an "Indian-Latin fusion" establishment. And I'm a sucker for anything Indian, so I figured my birthday was a great excuse to give the place a try. (Side note: Never walk a half mile in heels you've never worn before, no matter how "surprisingly comfortable" they feel when you first put them on...)

So I did my best to make myself look presentable, and we headed out in the 98-degree heat to walk to the restaurant. Seriously, you'd think those of us who lived in Texas for years would think nothing of 98-degree heat, but it is BRUTAL out there this week. And by the time we got to the restaurant, I'm fairly certain all my work to look decent was tossed by the wayside... I probably needed another shower... (such is the price of a July birthday... :))

The restaurant was really good -- I'd say it was about 85 percent Indian with about 15 percent "Latin" thrown in. We started with some artichoke pakoras, which were like battered, fried, slightly spicy artichoke hearts with some kind of dipping sauce. My horrible phone picture probably doesn't do it justice:

For dinner, I perused the menu and decided to go with something from the "dhaba fare" section. (I guess a dhaba is an Indian truck stop -- because when I think about good food, I inevitably think about truck stops in India. Or really, truck stops ANYwhere.) I got the pindi butter chicken, which was REALLY good (another bad camera phone picture):

The only thing that would've made it better was if it had been all white meat, since I'm not big on dark meat chicken, but it tasted great... I may have considered bringing home the leftover sauce just so I could pour it over rice or something, but I refrained from asking... Rick had the lamb shank gassi, which I tried and can honestly say was the BEST lamb I've ever tasted. Lamb isn't usually my favorite meat, but this stuff is apparently cooked for six hours until it just falls apart like short ribs. It was, however, more spicy than anything on the face of the planet. At least that's the idea I got from the way Rick was reacting to it... our server even brought over some kind of cucumber-yogurt sauce to help cut down on the heat, but by the end of dinner, Rick's stomach had eroded away... and then he said he'd probably order it again if we ever came back. (So either it was really good, or Rick is really reckless...) We also tried their chocolate cake for dessert, and even the DESSERT was spicy -- it came with a little scoop of blueberry sorbet on the side, which was useful for tempering the heat of the chili-chocolate sauce on the cake... yuuuuuum.

So all-in-all, a very good birthday dinner... although I just realized that even though I had that chocolate cake for dessert, I didn't get a big birthday cake that will last me the rest of the week... I should've made one for myself. But it's probably best that I didn't... we 73-year-olds needs to watch what we eat... :)

Not TOO bad for a septuagenarian, right?? 


Rick said...

Happy Birthday Honey!!!

You look great for all of 29 years! Eric is CRAAAAAZY....

Saji said...

Really like the honesty & happy go lucky tone of your posts.

Breaking my silence, to wish you a happy birthday (belated, I know).

Keep rocking!!

Lisa said...

Thanks, Rick... I've always THOUGHT Eric was probably crazy... :)

Saji, thank you so much! Please feel free to break your silence any time! :)

Anonymous said...

Yum. Sounds like it was a delicious birthday. Thought of you yesterday (technically, two days ago, since it's now 1 a.m. on the 22nd) but couldn't find your latest e-mail address.

Your blog was blocked by the bank (no surprise there) -- something to do with all those vulgar movie, restaurant and book reviews you post -- so I went back a few years to dig up the link to this page, then had to e-mail the link to self at home. Glad I did. Will read back-posts when time allows. Meanwhile, I love the new hairstyle -- and you definitely have not aged. Have fun unpacking -- and bake yourself a cake when you find the pans.


Lisa said...

Janet!! It's so nice to hear from you! Yes, the bank is quite picky about which sites are viewable and which aren't -- when I was there, I seemed to have a 50/50 shot with my blog. :)

I was thinking about you guys on my birthday, because I realized, "hey, at this time last year I was eating cake in the Edison Room..." :) But I've heard that there have been some big changes with the office configurations again, so perhaps the Edison is no more? Hopefully everything has worked out well!

Thanks for stopping by -- I hope you'll check in again from time to time! :)

LL Cool Joe said...

Did I miss your birthday?? I hope it was a good one!

I glad to say there is no chance of me ever wearing heels anywhere. :D

The food does look good!

Lisa said...

It was a good birthday -- thanks, Joe!! :) And yes, a comfortable shoe choice probably would've been more reasonable... the things I do to make myself look "pretty"... ;)