Tuesday, November 2, 2010

White Mountain Holiday (complete with snow and good service)

Greetings all!

Well first off, today is November 2nd, and you know what that means, Voting day!!!! Go out, go forth, go on and vote for who you think will best serve you, the public. (Small word of advice... if the candidate has a "D" next to their name, its probably the better choice, but who am I to suggest such things...) Ha! its fun to wear political pants sometimes.

I digress.

Now this is going to be a long post so hang in there baby, I promise it will be sorta worth it. This past week, from Thursday to Saturday morning, I attended a rehearsal dinner and wedding in the absolutely beautiful WHITE MOUNTAINS! I have only been through that region a few times, when I was much younger, and forgot how natural, rural and peaceful that area of northern New Hampshire.

Of course, for anyone who knows me, I love a good wedding (and outlet shopping in North Conway, what up Ralph Lauren.) So imagine my surprise when I was asked by a very good friend to accompany them to a wedding at the  Mountain View Grand Resort, http://www.mountainviewgrand.com/, in Whitefield, New Hampshire, and the place was breathtaking! I checked into the Mountain View Grand around 2 pm, where that staff was friendly, gracious and relaxed, a big plus for me. The lobby was rustic but classic at the same time, with plaid upholstered wing chairs, lots of leather, and a bevy of crystal chandeliers. I checked into my room, which was huge and had its own walk in closet! (move over Imelda Marcos). Even the bathroom was nice... those things are important from time to time!
But on to the food!

They have two main dining rooms on site, the formal Main Dining Room, where breakfast is served each morning, and The Tavern, where the two lunches I had there were amazing. The best table in the place, however, is in the Wine cellar, where a handful of small tables are surrounded by the resort's wine collection. Quite the beautiful space! For lunch both days, I enjoyed a sandwich, first a grilled chicken, and then a grilled veggie and hummus (delish) and two different salads, again first a squash and fresh berry salad with vinaigrette and then a caesar with anchovies! (imagine that!) But anything you see on the lunch menu is worth getting, trust me. (seriously)

So after check-in Thursday, that delish chicken sandwich, and a few laps in the warm and inviting pool (and sauna) I got dressed and headed for the rehearsal dinner at Littleton New Hampshire's The Beal House Inn, http://www.thebealhouseinn.com/, the next town over. When my date and I arrived, a long and lavish cocktail hour was in full swing, with the bartender, full of sass and stiff drinks, was eagerly entertaining the crowd. The venue was cozy, warm, intimate and the perfect place for well wishes, sing-a-longs on the piano and one too many white wines. Then dinner was announced and there was a delish carving station with ham, turkey, and roast beef (oh my!), salad with really fresh veggies and a melange of savory side dishes, potato included, that reminded me of a Thanksgiving dinner without the awkward family moments, and again, white wine aplenty! It was a great time!

That leads us to wedding day...

Back to the Mountain View Grand, where breakfast was a near delight, with fresh berries atop cold cereal, a must in my morning ritual, bagel with lox, and some decent but not amazing sunny side up eggs (they sort of tasted like onion, like the griddle was used for another dish before mine, a pet peeve I have.) But the morning was bright, and the world was my oyster, so I went to the on site library and leisurely read a few books about nature, took a short walk around the grounds, and went back to the pool and sauna, quite the relaxing day! (Feel free to gag anytime, who do I think I am, Hugh Hefner?)

And on to the main event, after showering and dressing in my snappy finest, complete with festive paisley tie (again Hugh, are you there?) My friend and I walked down to the ballroom for the ceremony, which was short (plus,) I didn't cry (bonus,) and it was really short, (o said that already.) Then it was right out the back doors into cocktail area for, well cocktails and appetizers, which were really tasty, with cheese, veggies, scallops wrapped in bacon...original :-/...and fried artichokes, which were really good.

Thennnnnn... nearing the end, I promise.

Dinner was in The Tavern again, like the lunches, and I had yet another salad and the Chicken Parmesan which was the size of Jerry Stiller's hands (taste wise it was a total yawn but hey it beats the Olive Garden) but the experience, the people and the service of the hotel more than made up for it!

Saturday morning, as I drove home, it snowed and it was beautiful. End of story.

So, rating time, this one is a bit split. For service, the Mountain View Grand is 5 Fork resort, but I have to give the food overall a 3 Forker (that damn chicken parm). The Beal House is a solid 4 Fork experience, because the service was da Bomb!

So, that wasn't too bad was it? You did it, you made it through the review, congrats! Prize? No no, no prize here, just another words of the day... yay!

Its November 2nd y'all, so vote, and when I did, I got a muffin... because I have political hookups, and they were gonna be thrown out anyway, so really I was doing them a favor. So sometimes when asked to do good you get baked goods, just sayin'.

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