Yesterday was my dad’s birthday, and as usual we went out to dinner. The past few years we’ve gone to McCormick and Schmick’s. A birthday is always our excuse for going a little bigger than we would otherwise, especially when it comes to dad.
This year, we changed things up a bit. Our last visit to M&S’s was disappointing for some, so dad decided on Red Lobster. I was a little hesitant, as I am most times I visit a new restaurant, until I checked out the menu online. Not only do I have my dairy restrictions to consider, but I’m also not big on seafood. I love shrimp, unsure of crab and most fish, and I’d never had lobster before. But I found a few things I could go with and thought I’d enjoy myself eating out for once.
I was more than right. First off, while I’m hardly a drinker, I do love a good daiquiri and they make a great Mango Berry Daiquiri.
I ended up with two of these over the course of dinner. They were so good! The mango took over most of the flavor profile, but I happen to love mango, so it wasn’t overpowering to me. What was best about the drink was that there wasn’t even a hint of the rum it contained. Part of why I don’t drink very often is I can’t stand the taste of alcohol (and it’s really flipping expensive). So to find a drink like the daiquiri is nice.
What also made for a good meal was what I ordered. I got a plate of the garlic-grilled shrimp and the peppercorn sirloin, with a side of wild rice pilaf. All of it was so tasty. The shrimp wasn’t overly buttery, my medium-rare sirloin was tender and flavorful (and not terribly peppery as I feared it would be), and the rice pilaf was a nice twist on what I usually get in a rice dish.
(The shrimp had been skewered, but I was eager to eat and forgot about sharing the artful plate with you all until they had been freed of their wooden impalement.)
Lastly, to top off a nice meal, I finally tried lobster. I get it. I really do. It’s awesome! My mom was generous to share a couple bites of the tail she got, both with and without butter. Obviously it was better with, but I did enjoy it without. I didn’t ask to try anyone’s crab, but dad let me try my hand at cracking one of his claws. Not an experience I feel the need to repeat unless necessary.
Perhaps one day I will be brave and try my hand at making lobster myself. I have a feeling I will be much like Julie Powell in Julie and Julia (the film version, I haven’t read the book).
I want to end this with a shout out to our waitress Jen (at the Vancouver location). She was a great server and we had a great time chatting with her. She seemed to really enjoy her job, which is always nice to see. I know it’s not always easy to be warm and smiling in service jobs (having been in one myself years ago), so I appreciate those who make a point of going above the expectation like she did.
Another time I will share something about her and what it means for her job that I find fascinating.