Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Labor Day Weekend: Providence Cerise

I made bean and pepper salad with cumin lime dressing, and jalapeno cheddar cornbread decorated with cubanelle pepper flowers to bring to my friends' BBQ. There was a fantastic selection of potluck goodies, and sadly it was my first BBQ since the Weber grill moved out in June.

Following the BBQ, we rushed to Providence to see Waterfire. A former coworker used to wax poetic about Waterfire as well as Providence's restaurant scene but plans to go over the past 5 years have always ended in failure. Thanks to the spontaneity and creativity of my holiday companion I finally made it. It was much prettier and more sensually affecting than I had expected. The burning wood smelled great, the pyres were mesmerizing, (as was watching the gondolas full of black clad volunteers replenishing the firewood), the music, including live opera was appropriate, and there was something comforting about being with a crowd of people who all seemed to be enjoying the evening.

We landed at Nick's on Broadway for a little dessert. I was instantly taken with the place if only for the shiny cerise tiles on the walls and the red glittery counter. The menu sounded sublime, and because we sat at the counter and watched the line cooks prepare the last dinners of the night we able to see that dinners on the menu looked and smelled sublime too. I lustfully eyed my neighbor's bowl of garlicky cioppino more than once. I ordered homemade lemon pudding served parfait style in a martini glass with crushed sugar cookies and whipped cream, and my friend ordered some sort of warm berry concoction. I paired my pudding with mint tea (served in a swank little pot) and he his with coffee. I read up on Nick's later, and it sounds like they have a killer brunch.

Sunday: brunched at the B-side, dined at Casa de Pedro in Watertown, and FINALLY watched Grey Gardens.

On Monday we returned to the Ocean State because one evening wasn't enough and Labor Day is the weekend to go for nice drives. We walked down student clogged Thayer street, which is almost as annoying as Harvard Square, and then wandered down a much more pleasant Wickendon street. To the beach to the beach! It took a while, but we finally found a beach that was open to out of state folks. I rediscovered the childlike joys of jumping over waves, changing into my bathing suit in the car, and the fabulous hair styling properties of salt water. After a sandy afternoon, we dined at Julian's Providence which was artfully delightful. There's a showcase of Star Wars figurines in the bathrooms, tabletops lined with vintage matchbox covers entombed in plastic, and a giant whisk shaped lamp. I took a number of silly tabletop panoramas before my dinner arrived.

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