It is no laughing matter that my husband and I look forward to Date Night all week. Usually, if I am home from work before midnight, we knock this special event out on Friday evenings. We usually head to a fine eating establishment like Chipotle or (occasionally) Taco Bell when we are feeling particularly special that week. However, thanks to a coupon for a free appetizer, this week we found ourselves at Red Robin. Yummmmmm.
I consider it a great moral accomplishment when the words, "I'll have a water, please...no lemon," come from my mouth. Red Robin is home of one of my favorite beverages in the world, The Freckled Lemonade. A bottomless drink of sparkling lemonade, sprite, and crushed strawberries? I would go there just to drink six gallons of the stuff. And the only bad thing is the occasional chunk of strawberry that gets wedged inside the straw. I sidestep that problem in advance by asking for seventeen straws. Nothing should slow me down when I am trying to get my $3.99-worth! This drink is such a thirst-quencher and so sweetly delicious. But because it is so cold and because I drink it in large gulps because it is irresistible, it is easy to fill up on such summery goodness. For the past three months, I have been trying, not always successfully, to be careful on eating a certain amount of calories a day. Sometimes I throw this out the window (on Date Night, for example), but I still couldn't justify getting all that sugary liquid AND bottomless fries. So I picked one over the other, secretly contemplating a couples trip to Krispy Kreme later on for dessert (and luckily for our waist lines, we were both too full from dinner to make this a reality).
Our free appetizer arrived, and just in time for our ravenous appetites to growl so loudly that the table next to us left the premises in a hurry. The Tower Of Onions, with accompanying ranch and Cowboy Sauce for dipping. Ironically, neither of us are huge onion ring fans, but this stack of greasy, crunchy goodness is so crave-able and yummy that we kept looking towards the kitchen in anticipation. I had made up my mind to only eat a few, as I had a great meal on the way. However, something like heavenly onion rings (and a Tower of them at that) are not good the next day for leftovers. So I pulled my weight as a team member to help John devour the entire thing. I stopped counting as I pulled them from lower and lower on the metal pole, just so I wouldn't feel badly about myself later. We'll just say that he ate more of the rings than me, and that might possibly be true. They were incredible! The batter wasn't too thick but has such a perfect consistency. And the Cowboy Sauce is BBQ sauce combined with a little bit of mayonnaise. For someone who doesn't really like mayonnaise, this stuff was too good to skip! I am sure it helped that we hadn't eaten for eight hours in preparation for our Date Night. We would get them again and would highly recommend a Tower Of Onions appear on your own table in the near future.
John's main course was the Burnin' Love Burger. He likes spicy things and made no exceptions tonight. Well-done meat topped with deep-fried jalapenos (he insists these are NOT considered vegetables because they take a swim in oil first), pepper jack cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato, and spicy chipotle mayonnaise, all on a jalapeno-encrusted ciabatta bun. If ketchup wasn't too spicy for me, I may have tasted a bite of his burger to inform you how delicious this particular monstrosity was. Being the burger-snob that he is, John approved and ate the entire thing.
I ended up surprising myself by ordering my favorite thing on the menu, despite expecting all day to get the Whiskey River BBQ Chicken Wrap. I went back to my all-time favorite selection, the BaconLettuce Tomato/urkeyAvacado Croissant Sandwich. Lovingly known as the BLTA to us regulars. It is a rare sandwich that I actually enjoy sliced turkey, but it may have something to do with the gigantic slices of avocado that make me forget turkey exists on there somewhere as well. Holy cow, it was good. And with hot and seasoned bottomless steak fries dipped in ranch dressing? I was set for the evening. We accidentally ordered some more fries towards the end of our meal but almost finished them, just to be polite!
We rolled out of the restaurant and into the car to go to Wal-Mart for some errands. Walking around was good, however, since we probably burned off 1/1000th of our Date Night intake.
Date Nights can always successfully me measured by how full we feel afterwards. This particular night? An 11!