Going Out and Getting Cheesy

I go through a lot of phases with food…

From what I eat to WHERE I eat, I can’t help but get fixated on certain foods or flavors…even if it takes actually scrolling through my photo library for me to realize it. Which is what happened over the weekend. I don’t know about you guys, but I tend to go out for meals more often this time of year. There’s just something about having a warm meal brought TO you that helps melt away the holiday stresses…and it’s even better when it gives you more time to spend with your nearest and dearest. And as CHEESY as that sounds, it’s true in every way!

Like the dinner I had with a couple of friends earlier this month…

Rock Bottom - Beer Flight

Bust out the beer flights, it’s time for some fun!

But seriously, it was a great night spent telling stories, sharing laughs, and pausing momentarily to praise the pizza gods for this one here…

Rock Bottom - Veggie Pizza

Seriously the BEST veggie pizza I have ever had in.my.life! Sorry, Mellow Mushroom, but you ain’t got nothing on Rock Bottom Brewery! Epic love stories could be written about this thing…of course it would always end in tragedy since it’s absolutely impossible not to devour every last bit! Topped with mushrooms, tomatoes, onions, DRESSED spinach leaves and feta, I can assure you, Shakespeare would be pleased.

And you know what makes a night out with friends even better?

Flying Saucer Pizza

MORE pizzaaaaaaaah!

After a couple of hours/drinks at The Flying Saucer (my new FAVE-o-rite hangout…they have leather fucking couches, people!), we got a fever and the only cure for that fever was more cowbell cheese!* Our “smack yo’ mama good” combo included spiced beef, BEER bratwurst, and perfectly sliced prosciutto and it seriously earned a moment of silence after the first bite. Also? I feel the need to bring to your attention that this pie was incidentally the exact OPPOSITE of the last one we ordered. Yeah, I couldn’t help but laugh.

*Please dear god, somebody get that SNL reference!

After visiting some old coworkers a couple of days later, I ended up faced with a serious case of the hangries. Since the weather was all gloom and doom like it’s been most of this month, I wasn’t really surprised when I found myself automatically pulling into Olive Garden. But instead of the soup, salad, and breadsticks that I usually order, I decided to finally sample some of the small plates I’ve seen advertised lately (and drooled profusely over). Starting with these Crispy Risotto Bites…

Olive Garden - Crispy Risotto Bites

They weren’t bad. I would’ve preferred a bit more of a cheesy flavor inside so I didn’t finish them, but I made sure to lap up every last bit of that delicious marinara! Luckily my other selection made up for what the other lacked in the gooey melty cheese department…

Olive Garden - Tortellini al Forno

BAM! This tortellini, stuffed with prosciutto, topped with bacon and COVERED in parmesan cream sauce, with extra grated parmesan on top (who am I to say no to a waitress offering free cheese?), was…dare I say, too much cheese?! I’ll admit, I did entertain the idea of ordering their pumpkin cheesecake for the road, but this little sly ninja cheesemonger had to tap out after all that richness! 😯

THEN there was Tori’s graduation dinner a couple of weeks ago at one of my favorite local restaurants, Liberty Park Grill, where some (sadly unpictured, but nevertheless ahhhhhMAZING!) Southwest Egg Rolls were devoured among the lot of us. After taking a dip in some fried pickles and quietly reciting poetry to the softest bread ever made, it was time for our entrees…

Liberty Park Grille - Strawberry Chicken Salad

And my Strawberry Chicken Salad did NOT disappoint! Super juicy grilled chicken breast over fresh farmers’ market greens with strawberries, CARAMELIZED pecans and bleu cheese crumbles with a delicious honey vinaigrette dressing.

And because we all know my little sister has more guts that me

Liberty Park Grille - Creme Brulee Cheesecake

Creme Brulee Cheesecake for dessert!

No words. None.

What is your favorite restaurant?

Do you have a go-to order?

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