From Georgia to Germany

By , January 1, 2014 11:40 am

After a long cold flight from Fargo, ND to Chicago, IL Kate is making me write this blogpost under Burnsian duress. If I don’t get it done before our flight to DC she plans to sic the dogs on me. So let’s jump straight in.

[Update: I did not finish the blog in time but only because the airport wifi was only free for 30 minutes. When I ran out of time I lost half of this blog post.]

As mentioned in the previous post during our travels to NY in November we hit up both German and Georgian restaurants. Both were delicious although a tad expensive for my taste – especially two nights in a row. The first night we met our friends Ashley and Renae for dinner and a play in Brooklyn. The dinner at the German restaurant Berlyn was much better than the play which was a confusing story about family, lovers, and climate change. Dinner, however, was much less confusing, also had some lovers, and hardly touched on the subject of climate change. Germany of course is a leading nation for renewable energy and produces more than 20% of its electricity from renewables.

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Renae, Ashley, and Kate outside the restaurant Berlyn.

We started the meal with in-house potato chips made to order and a hot pretzel with stone ground mustard. Renae and Kate discovered a mutual love of chips, and decided that the one true food is: Chips.

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Fresh made potato chips

Next we progressed to our main courses. Kate and I shared a plate of sauerkraut and a vegetarian strudel. Both were good but I think we can both agree the sauerkraut was the winner. I know what you are saying, “Good sauerkraut! Are you kidding?” But it is true. It was delicious.

Sauerkraut and a vegetarian strudel

Sauerkraut and a vegetarian strudel

Ashley and Renae shared a bratwurst and a bowl of brussels sprouts. I am told both were also excellent.

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Ashley with a bratwurst and bowl of brussels sprouts.

The evening was a hit and it was so much fun to spend some time with our friends from Utah who we rarely get to see.

Eccentric enough? Notice the butterflies on the wall made from plants!

The next night we met with other friends for some Georgian food in Manhattan at one of the most eccentric restaurants I’ve been to, called Pepela: Georgian Cuisine and Gallery. Georgia is located on the Black Sea squished between Turkey and Russia. Its food therefore shares both Mediterranean and slavic flavors.

When we arrived at the restaurant an art show happening and so the small restaurant was crowded. Our friend Thelma and Arie and one of their other friends joined us that night.

Friends at Pepela

Friends at Pepela

So, on to the food. Since we were a tad broke from the night before we did not order a full dinner and instead got a smattering of starters and a main dish to share. The first items we received were eggplant rolls made from – quoting the menu – “Traditional Georgian walnut paste rolled in thinly sliced eggplant,” Gebjalia which is “Suluguni Cheese rolled in fresh Mint Leaves,” and Khachapuri or “Legendary Georgian Baked Flat Cheese Bread.” All were scrumptious, especially the cheese bread.

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Eggplant rolls and Gebjalia (cheese)

Kate loved the Khachapuri and it was all I could do to try and get a taste before she ate it all.

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Kate eating a slice of Khachapuri

 We finished out appetizers with a plate of Buglama of Salmon or as the menu put it “pan fried pieces of salmon cooked with tomatoes, fresh greens and white wine served with rice and olives.” It was amazing and really felt sorry Kate was too vegetarian to try it. Finally, Kate and I also splurged on two sodas from Georgia, the first being a cream flavored and the other tarragon. The sodas were tasty, especially the cream soda that tasted similar to American cream soda – strange, I know!

Salmon dish and Georgian sodas

Salmon dish and Georgian sodas

At the end of the evening the best possible outcome occurred when the owner of the place stopped us on our way out to chat. He was super friendly and told us all about the restaurant and his home in Georgia. He also made sure to tell us that President Clinton had eaten then a few times and proved it by showing us the photo on the wall. He said that Clinton came to the restaurant once with all of his entourage, but loved the food so much he came back the next day on his own incognito. The owner even paused for a picture with Kate and I.

The owner of the restaurant with President Clinton and Kate and I with the owner...so by association Kate and I have posed for a picture with the President of the USA

The owner of the restaurant Gabriel with President Clinton and Kate and I with Gabriel…so by association Kate and I have posed for a picture with the President of the US.

All-in-all the Georgian restaurant was a success, our trip to NY was also a success, and our lives to that point también.

2 Responses to “From Georgia to Germany”

  1. Natalia Garcia says:

    Neil, u da best writer. Make dis neil.com

  2. Momalicicous Kelly says:

    In the words of Monte Burns: “Eeeeehhhhhxxxxellent!”

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