Saturday, August 02, 2008

The Honeymoon: The Food

There are a lot of things a feller could get excited about when it comes to a honeymoon, and food is almost certainly one of them. Usually a man takes his love to a nice restaurant twice a year—once at Valentine’s Day and once for the anniversary—but on the honeymoon you get to eat great food over and over again, night after night. Not only that, but at an all-inclusive resort this delicious food doesn’t cost you any extra dime.

At Couples you simply seat yourself, pig out on whatever food you can stuff down your gullet, and walk out of the restaurant when you’re finished. Amy and I joked that when we got back to civilization we’d probably forget to pay our bill at our next TGI Friday’s excursion. We’d just stuff down our award-winning Guy Fieri hand-selected dinners and wander out of the store without a care in the world. Then we’d wander our way into the backseat of a Bloomington Police Department cruiser.

While on our honeymoon, however, we didn’t have anything to worry about. Not even tips, as workers on the resort can get fired if they take any extra cash from the patrons. There’s no better way to live, ladies and gentlemen.

The food itself was high-quality. Couples Swept Away has six restaurants, and we spent our fair share at every single one of them. In general, our daily routine started out at the buffet restaurant for a deliciously varied hot breakfast. The highlight for Amy was their thick French toast and fruit syrup, while I opted for the king of all breakfasts, eggs and sausage and bacon. For breakfast dessert I’d mix together an unholy alliance of fruit juices: cherry, orange, pineapple, and a lovely concoction called “soursop.” I’m salivating now at the mere memory.

Goodness gracious.

Lunch was almost always a burger for Amy and Caribbean Jerk chicken for me. For those of you ignorant to this delectable dish, it’s basically a baked chicken sopped in spicy jerk sauce. Then they chop the hell out of the meat and serve it to you with coleslaw. The same grill served Jamaican beef patties, which I’m not sure how to explain. Good, spicy, beefy. I’m probably not painting a good picture here, am I? We’ll just agree to leave it at, “I love native Jamaican food.”

Things varied for dinner. We ate a Thai place a couple of times, which was surprising considering Amy’s general aversion to anything not totally plain and made in America. But she was a trooper and generally enjoyed the dishes we were served. She especially enjoyed the fried bananas and ice cream that place gives out for dessert.

We also at once at the big fancy five-star restaurant on campus, Feathers. It’s won awards for being awesome, but like a lot of the stuff you see being made on Iron Chef, nothing on the menu looked particularly edible in a practical sense. Sure, everything that went into the dishes were clearly food on their own, but for the most part these smaller parts had no business being mixed together.

It was at Feathers that Amy and I ate duck and oxtail “open” ravioli (which looked more like a baby lasagna), lamb, and some ridiculous soup made out of pumpkins and cappuccino. I will say that the steak was terrific and the dessert was top notch. We weren’t sure what to order off the dessert menu, so we just got them to bring us a little bit of everything.

We actually did that quite a few times. I remember one night we were eating at a restaurant and I couldn’t decide between the lobster (which I had never tried before and desperately wanted to) and the ribs (which were ribs and therefore the trump suit). So to solve my little predicament I just ordered both, which I got. Later in the same meal, Amy and I ordered three desserts. Gluttony owned us for ten days, what can I say?

But what’s the point of being a glutton if you can’t also be a bit of a lush? The tour de force (is that the right French idiom in this context?) of an all-inclusive resort is the free alcohol. Because of the heat and the constantly full stomachs, Amy and I didn’t get fully inebriated at all the entire trip, but we did enjoy trying a bunch of new drinks and dabbling in the top shelf liquors we’d never spend $10 a mixed drink for back home.

All the tropical fruity drinks there have fun names like Blue Lagoon and Caribbean Mist and Dirty Banana. I can’t tell you how many times I just asked the bartenders to surprise me, and every single time I got back something awesome and delicious. If I could’ve tipped those guys, I absolutely would have. But I couldn’t. Free, remember?

Grey Goose, Crown Royal, and every colored label of Johnny Walker you can imagine. I spent the week rotating between drinking like a sorority girl and like James Bond. In both cases, it was pretty awesome to order whatever the hell I wanted without having to worry about the financial repercussions.

Oh, and all the Red Stripe you can drink!

The food and spirits were all top-notch, but really the whole honeymoon was just what a honeymoon should be—tropical, warm, indulgent, fattening, and fun. The only sad part of the whole thing was coming home and knowing school was right around the corner. I’ll tell you what, summers go by quickly when there’s a wedding involved. Still, it was all great from the planning to the wedding itself to our trip to Jamaica.

So to put the period on this thing before it gets too long, I’ll just say that it was all good. Yeah, mon.

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