Monday, June 10, 2013

Eureka Eating Experiences Etc.

Going to Eureka to visit our daughter Stacey and her husband Pat, always involves eating.  It must be because all four of us love to cook and more importantly, eat.  On Sunday we arrived in Fortuna at the Riverwalk RV Resort where we usually stay while visiting Eureka.  We like this rv park because it is adjacent to the Eel River and we can walk the levy of the river in either direction and get great photos of the surrounding farms in their hillside setting.  That very evening we went to Stacey and Pat's house for a great dinner of brats and coleslaw.  Coming from Minnesota, brats are a big tradition in Pat's family and now they are a tradition in ours too.
On Tuesday Pat and Allan set off for Stone Lagoon to go kayaking.  There are so many places to kayak around Eureka, but Allan had wanted to kayak Stone Lagoon for several years now and he finally got to do it.  There were cormorants sitting around on branches and eagles gliding in the updrafts.  While they were kayaking and Stacey was at a doctors appointment, I took the dogs and went out to plein air.
I set up the easel with the dry lagoon on my right and the ocean out to my left and tried to paint a scene from the lagoon.  Somehow I ended up with my focal point dead center and the entire painting was green.  Not a great success except that I got some fresh air.  I packed up and headed into town to meet everyone else for lunch at Café Nooner.  The next evening we met Stacey and Pat at the Crabs Stadium to see the local club play baseball. 
Usually they play against another summer team, but this night they were playing against the high school team and they had their work cut out for them as the high school team was very good.  The two best parts of being at the Crabs game is getting the hot dogs and hamburgers made on a grill behind the refreshment stand AND listening to the music by the Crab Grass Band.  Although the game went into overtime, the Crabs prevailed, so we all went home happy. 
One of the days that Allan and I were out photographing barns and scenery, we stopped at the Loleta Bakery and Bistro which is in a town that barely has a main street, let alone a bakery, but there are folks waiting in line every day to get a seat for lunch.  Everyone orders the chicken pot pie and you can see why in the photo.  The crust was flaky and buttery, the chicken was in a gravy with veggies.  We also took home several pastries and a couple of slices of blueberry pie.  
One of the days in Eureka was spent at the Bootlegger Used Bookstore.  There are always books just calling our names from this familiar stop on our used book trail.  This was no exception, we staggered out of the shop with books on both arms.  One of the books Allan got was a book called the Shirley Letters, about a woman who went out to the goldfields during the goldrush and kept a record of her experiences.  One of the books that I got was British Painting "the golden years".  
Friday evening we hosted dinner at our rv and purchased baby back ribs from a truck that Stacey and Pat recommended to us for great barbeque.  I made potato salad and we had a good time eating and talking about the rv life.  On Saturday morning we all went to the Arcata Farmers Market which is one of the best in the northwest.  There are booths ringed around the Arcata Plaza and they are all selling produce or bakery items or plants or honey....  all organic or home made. 
I was able to stock up on some lovely beets, small nantes carrots, several lettuces, hand made soaps, scones, preserved meyer lemons, fresh basil, and much more.  Allan bought a geranium for our Apache Junction garden with tiny pink and white butterfly shaped flowers (watch out Paul, even though Allan isn't there, he is still getting plants).   And for our final evening in Eureka, Pat and Stacey treated us to dinner at the Brick and Fire Bistro in Eureka.  Really interesting and delicious meals. 
Stacey and Pat shared two appetizer dishes, one a mushroom compote and the other was grilled apricots with blue cheese.  Allan and I shared a fabulous salad of Apricots, Arugula, and Avocado with cashews and other fun ingredients. 
Allan and Pat both had the Beef Stroganoff with Grilled Polenta and Balsamic Reduction.  Allan had never had polenta grilled before and liked it very much. 
I had an Angelhair Pasta with Portabella Mushrooms and a Meyer Lemon Wine Sauce. 
And Stacey had one of their pizzas with pine nuts and basil.  And that was certainly a great dinner to end a great visit.  Thanks for all the good food, Stacey and Pat.  Now we really have to get back on that diet again.  Someday soon.  Well, someday.  


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