Sunday, November 17, 2013

Bavarian Bliss

This weekend, Joel and I headed over the pass to Leavenworth to join up with friends for a weekend away. After my terrible week, I was really looking forward to a relaxing weekend of doing nothing but whatever I felt like doing with a really great group of friends.

We decided to start the night off right, with a few drinks down at the Tumwater Inn Restaurant & Lounge. We arrived about twenty minutes before last call and missed out on the live music, so we downed a beer or two before moving on to the Old Post Office Tavern. The night included darts, drinks, and impromptu karaoke singing. Who knew that Joel was a closet country music fan with a pair of pipes! That boy was belting out the tunes for us!

I tried to take a nice picture of the boys and this is what I get... nice boys!
I think they are enjoying themselves!

Amy, Andi and Me
Eventually even this bar closed down and we headed out into the night in search of food. This town is not where you want to find yourself at 2:00 in the morning feeling drunk and hungry. There is no place to get food of any kind. No grocery store, no fast food, no pizza joint, nothing. We decided to try our luck by walking down to the gas station.

Nope, not even the gas station is open. And they made it pretty clear that sneaking in and leaving cash in exchange for some munchies was not a good idea. Not that I have actually done this in the past, but I will admit to considering it that night. As we stood around in the parking lot, a couple of young guys who were at the gas station pumping gas, came over to try to get some smokes from us. Is it realty that hard to believe that we don't smoke? At some point Andi and I ended up trying to convince a third guy, who was trying to sleep in the back of the truck, not to get back together with his ex-girlfriend who I remember had a really dorky name. I did consider stealing their bag of Doritos, but decided I better not. Joel might get mad. I am pretty sure we are way too old to be doing stuff like this! Why do these things always happen when I hang with this group!

Eventually, we decided to head back to our hotel and raid the snack machine in the hotel lobby. I have no idea how much money we spent but it must have been a small fortune. I also remember sending Joel back down to the machine to replenish our supply of food in the room, several times. We drank too much, we stayed up too late, but it was a wonderfully good time.

I thought I was taking a picture of the boys, but really I took a selfie. Nice finger, Jess...
Then the boys took my phone and had some fun of their own.
It was an epic story I am sure!

The next morning we woke up to a beautiful, sunny day. Most of us were able to get up in time for the continental breakfast provided by the hotel. But one of us was seriously down for the count. Poor Mark Bailey was feeling so poorly that he actually stayed in bed for most of the day. We were able to get him to eat some food that morning, but eventually we left him to sleep it off.
Andi, Amy, Joel, Thayer and I walked into town to get some much needed coffee and to browse the shops. We visited the must-see shops like the Hat Shop and the Cheesemongers Shop, as well as just about every other shop on the main street. After about eight shops, Thayer and Joel said they were going to head back to the hotel to check on Bailey. It wasn't long before we discovered all three boys were napping. That's right, the girls were out having fun and enjoying the day while the old men slept off their night of fun.
After we tired of browsing store after store and buying coordinating ear warmers, we headed over to South for some food and, of course, more drinks!

They have a salsa bar! Knowing how much Joel loves salsa, I immediately texted him to let him know what he was missing out on.
You know it is something serious when not even a salsa bar can get Joel out of bed. Oh well, it just meant that Amy, Andi and I could hang out and get caught up. We shared appetizers, drinks, and lots of laughs. These two ladies are amazing and I so glad to call them my friends. The time passes way too quickly whenever we hang out and I am always left wishing we were able to hang out more!

Two of the boys eventually were able to get up and meet up with us for some food at South, but Bailey was still in bed trying to recover from the night before. As you can see, Joel and Mark were still feeling a bit green. These are the thrilled faces of two old men, who after a night of parting too hard spent an afternoon listening to their drunk significant others shop. Poor boys. Must have been a living hell.
Leavenworth was all decorated for the holiday season and it was getting me in the Christmas mood! I am typically a strict December 1 to December 31 holiday celebrator, but this year I might just break my own rules. I just feel like Thanksgiving gets cut short when Christmas starts too early. But after spending a weekend walking around a winter wonderland, it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!!
After another nap for the boys and some down time for the girls, we meet up again for dinner at Visconti's. We all love this place and were excited for a big feast. We started out with a few bottles of the Jones of Washington Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine is made over in Quincy, where Thayer is from. He even knows of the guy who owns the winery. We figured why not give it a try. I thought it was delicious and loved the cork so much I took it home. I suggest giving it a try when you have a chance.

Look at that cork - I loved it!
Joel with Mark and Amy Thayer

Andi, Mark Bailey and Me

We ordered so much food. I am pretty sure I am still full from this dinner! These were just the appetizers that we ordered. We shared orders of brushetta, wood-fire grilled mushrooms, calamari in pesto with bread and dipping oil. We were stuffed before the main course arrived.

I was feeling like Joel and I could use some vegetables, so in addition to our main courses, I ordered us a side of brussels sprouts with pancetta and homemade gnocchi with sage butter. I highly recommend the Visconti's Cannelloni and Joel said his Chicken and Mushroom Fettuccine was very good. We ate until we couldn't eat another bite and then we ate some more.
When I am on vacation, I love to eat. It is a total experience for me. I love to sit around a table, sharing drinks and stories with friends as we all enjoy a delicious dinner. I love it. I really do. I had a great night and wish these nights happened more often. My waistline doesn't appreciate these nights, though.
After dinner, with boxed desserts to go, we headed back to our hotel for a quiet night in. And what better way to end a wonderful trip then Sharknado. Yes, we connected the surface to the TV in Mark and Andi's room, ate our desserts, drank some more and enjoyed a thrilling moving. Oh my goodness. Sharknado lived up to every terrible moment I had heard of. Seriously, it was a terrible movie. But it was so bad it was good.
This was probably the first time I have visited Leavenworth and did not go wine tasting. We didn't visit a single winery! Can you believe it?! I can't. It just never happened. I have to admit, I am a bit sad about this fact because Kristine over at Living Barefoot and Crazy gave me the insider scoop on all the best spots to check out. I was really excited to check these places out and get back to Kristine with my thoughts. Oh well, now I have a reason to go back sometime very soon!


  1. Ah! Looks like you had a blast! Oh, the Post Office. It's really something, isn't it? Ha. Where did you guys stay? The South is pretty good; always seems super packed though! I can't believe you guys didn't head to Ducks and Drakes! It's a SUPER classy place ;) Visconti's is good... did you know it was voted one of the best places to kiss? Yeah, I didn't either, but 'tis true!
    Sounds like we need to make a blogger girls trip to Leavenworth and do some wine tasting!

  2. Can't wait for sharknado 2!! haha it's funny how none of the boys ever mentioned how I won at darts :)

  3. Okay I am shocked that Joel wasn't more concerned about missing the salsa bar... was he feeling all right?!?

    Sarah @ Life As Always