In December we were able to visit my parents. So off we flew to Seattle, where they picked us up from the airport. It had been previously decided that we would have a vacation within a vacation, so reservations were made at an inn in Leavenworth, WA. (Sidenote: for December, or basically anything after Thanksgiving, you have to have reservations...they book solid a year in advance). Throughout the weekends of December, they have a glorious display of holiday lights throughout the downtown area, with music in the plaza and other activities.
On our drive to Leavenworth (pictured at left), we stopped in Tukwila for lunch. Grazie Restaurant is wonderful; small and family run, everything is very fresh, and nothing we ordered from their menu was anything short of fantastic. So, if you are ever in Tukwila, check them out. You won't be disappointed.
On the road again, headed through the Cascades, and soon enough we were in Leavenworth. And it was packed. People everywhere! It's a good thing, but finding parking would be a nightmare. Fortunately the inn had parking. Dream House Suites is the place we stayed to be specific--complete with kitchenette! Very comfortable, extremely convenient location and sleeps at least 4 adults!
Now, onto, you guessed it...the eats. There is no lack of food in Leavenworth; it is everywhere. And all kinds too, but mostly focused on the German. It is a Bavarian village after all. So, we decided to eat at Pavz--twice. First for dinner, then for breakfast.
For dinner, we had an appetizer of cheese fondue. It was great. Their whole menu pretty much consists of variously stuffed crepes. I had ham, cheese and cremini mushroom, topped with bechamel. Very good, and incredibly filling; one crepe can definitely serve two people (I doggie-bagged half of mine). My parents and Jeremy all ordered different crepes and enjoyed them thoroughly. Then Jeremy and I went back for breakfast...
I ordered the chile relleno (at left). Poblano pepper stuffed with homemade chorizo, potatoes and cheese, atop eggs, black beans and avocado, garnished with pico de gallo. Mmmm Mmmm yum. It was wonderful. A lot going on, as far as ingredients and items, but all works together. Jeremy got a ham, cheese and egg crepe. Basically the equivalent to my dinner, minus the mushrooms.After our breakfast, Jeremy, my Dad and I headed on over to Red Tail Canyon Farm. Dad had made reservations for a sleigh ride, however there was not enough snow at the time to embark on such an adventure. A wagon ride was substituted and it was fun. I feel the Belgian drafts would probably disagree, as it started to snow pretty heavily the morning of our scheduled visit. The guides take you around the farm, discussing the history, the forest, the horses...fun for all ages and they provide heavy blankets for cold weather. Added bonus: hot cocoa and a nice warm fire in a teepee before you depart.
We ate dinner at Cafe Christa that evening. Excited for the food, and apple streusel for dessert, we were on the more disappointed side of life. (Note: lack of food photos here). My parents and I have eaten there numerous times before, and the streusel was amazing, with a vanilla sauce that we craved. However, the food (wiener schnitzel, saurbraten, and sausage platter) was mediocre. And my Mom and I could not figure out what they did to the sauce for the streusel. It was overly sweetened with an artificial orange flavor. We inquired as to why this was, and were informed "We have always made it that way." My Mom and I disagreed wholeheartedly (as oranges and vanilla are not the same flavor); we left and cheered ourselves up with a ruckus game of Cards Against Humanity.
The Bubblery. This shop is located in one of the numerous small shopping 'malls' that encompass downtown Leavenworth. I didn't find the smells of the store overwhelmingly strong, and everything was divine (I highly suggest you check out their website). I'm all for little local stores, and this one was great. I have yet to actually use the soap (mostly I just smell it and swoon), so I can't comment on how clean it makes you feel, or how soft it makes your skin. Honestly, I think The Bubblery could be a serious future competitor for Lush...and Jeremy reported they take great care when wrapping your items if they are to be gifted (they were very cutely wrapped, btw). The place looks like a pastry shop--full of cupcake bathbombs and large apothocary jars full of handmade sugar scrub. Seriously, if you like soap, bath products and other handmade cosmetics as much as I do, you won't be disappointed by this place.