See that picture? That’s only a quarter of the room. Or less. Now imagine that stretching in all those directions. With food and drink booths all the way around. And in the middle. There were only a few booths in the middle, but there was still plenty of room for silent auction tables, and tables for people to sit down for a minute or two to catch their breath, talk a little with friends or digest for a minute.
The food was fabulous. The booths had little tiny servings, and I ate till I was filled to my eyeballs. I tried to keep up with the fella, who eats shockingly fast, which wasn’t smart. We had crab cakes and shrimp with watermelon gazpacho and salad (Fisherman’s Wharf had a salad with fresh lump crab, shrimp and…something else) and in all kinds of sauces.
We had shortribs with polenta and prime rib with a tiny scoop of garlic mashed potatoes. I ate a raspberry chipotle olive pizza, and a smoked chicken salad sandwich (out of this world) with a slice of pork tenderloin with a spicy apple barbecue sauce from Capital Q Barbecue.
I had an Asian chicken salad from the Mosquito Cafe, and a fruit skewer from Southern Produce. That was really good, and I should have gone back for another… The fella ate sushi from the Sky Bar, and I got gumbo from the Gumbo Bar (I think they’re owned by the same people). I also got some crawfish etouffee from… Hmm. Don’t remember. But it was good. And they also had red beans and rice.
There was a chicken-crawfish-shrimp in wine sauce thing from one of the Mexican restaurants, and a broccoli-rice casserole that had barbecued sausage in it from one of the barbecue places. That was really good too. We tried pretty much everything, unless the line was too long. Except all the wine. There were a LOT of wine and spirits booths, and two with beer/hard lemonade type things. I like the Smirnoff Cranberry Lime malt beverage. I also tried a taste of cherry rum. Yes, I was a two-fisted drinker (as you can see). This was before I dropped the barbecued sausage down my shirt and got barbecue sauce on it.
They also had bibs, because it was really hard to hold a cup and a little plate, and try to eat off it. But I couldn’t get the bib to stay up, so I got barbecue sauce on me. Ah well. Oh–and desserts! There were biscotti and cupcakes and pumpkin bars and cookies and this mini-volcano thing from the Rainforest Cafe that was ice cream in the middle, brownies around it (as rocks) and caramel and chocolate sauce dribbled down the sides. DEElicious.
I tried to keep up with the fella, who eats lickety-split, and I hurt myself eating too fast. I did slow down after the first or second booth. There was plenty of food, and it was all good.
I AM writing. Or revising. That’s all good too. Also, I don’t have to run my genre-review column by the editor before putting it in the paper any more. It’s all good.