Yah, even the restaurant names are fancier in Aspen. I actually heard a waiter pronounce it like "Gizz-ella" rather than "Gee-zella." Yikes. Aspen is where fancy-schmancy comes to die and be reborn uber-fancy-schmanced.
Luckily, however, our meal was actually very good, and we were able to sit outside on with Haruki tucked on the side of our table.
|We do not feed her human food, and yet here she is, staring at David's focaccia like she owns it.|
Despite plowing our way through some pretty average focaccia and olive oil, David and I decided to stuff ourselves with entrees and appetizers! (Vacation = a valid reason for ignoring hunger/satiety cues--my favorite!)
David had the minestrone, which was surprisingly yummy: lots of really fresh veggies, some kind of nutty and hearty grain, and a broth that tasted like more than water!
I had the misto salad, which was a complete rip-off at $12--though it was also the cheapest salad on the menu. And I'm not talking about entree salads here, people, I'm talking about starter salads that cost $12-20. There's a big part of me that will always see spending $12 on a starter salad as absurd--even if it did have a great lemon vinaigrette and even if I become a rich and famous vagina scholar.
For our entrees, David and I both had the Whole-Wheat Veggie Pasta, which was.so.good. As you might recall, I don't like pasta so much, but this I really enjoyed. The WW pasta was hearty and filling and perfectly cooked. There was a diverse range of veggies from spinach to peas to string beans to artichoke to tomato to mushroom, all of which were coated in a subtle but yummy and thick sauce (and later topped with parmesan cheese)!
I kept telling David that I wish I knew what made this pasta dish a success while previous pasta dishes have been crap--any ideas? I would eat pasta a lot more if it tasted like this. (OK, realistically, I'd cook dinner occasionally and occasionally cook pasta instead of what I've been doing lately, which is eating a s%&*ton of kale and then filling in all my additional caloric "needs" with chocolate and cereal. (Please see my post on girl hormones.)
After dinner, we took a walk around the swanky neighborhoods of Aspen. And! We saw a bear! Eating trash! I didn't get a picture, though, because it was literally six feet from us and I was too busy freaking out and trying to get away quickly without alarming the bear. (Given my emotional state lately, I'm surprised the bear didn't sense my voracious appetite--yes, even for trash--and attack me as a food competitor.)