There isn’t anything in the world that makes me happier than spending time with my wonderful husband and eating really good food.
I especially love going out to eat with Tony. Not only is he super adventurous, he genuinely loves to eat good food. We are both in agreement when we go out to eat: get whatever you want and enjoy every second of it.
I walk by Membrillo nearly every day on my way to work and I’ve been wanting to try it for months. My sweet coworker was so kind to give us a gift-card to the restaurant for taking care of her kitties all weekend. Saturday night was finally the perfect night to try it out. Thanks, Ashley!
Membrillo is a tapas-syle Latin kitchen. The food is sourced from local farms and markets and they change their menu at least 4 times a week.
Tony and I quickly glanced at the menu and both immediately agreed to go with the “tasting menu” option: a 6-course meal all of the chef’s choosing.
See what I mean about the whole ordering whatever you want thing?
They had such a fun menu of non-alcoholic drinks, so we ordered an “aqua fresqa” with hibiscus and lemon to start. I don’t normally like sweet drinks, but this one was fresh and delicious!
The bread board with assorted “butters” came first. The three bread options were a potato roll, a flatbread with anise, and a seedy roll. The “butters” were salty whipped butter, white bean spread, and a sweet sheep-milk fruity spread.
I wish I could remember all of the exact ingredients. I was too distracted by how incredible it was.
Our favorite combo was the potato roll with the salty whipped butter. I wanted to take the leftover butter home. It was that good.
Then, the white bean and quinoa salad with cilantro-lime vinaigrette and sheep-milk cheese came next. This was so light and refreshing! I will definitely be making a version of this for lunches.
The “Tiradito” came next: Peruvian sashimi with wild Oregon salmon, avocado puree, and a salty finish. The fish was fresh and buttery. We both agreed this was the star of the show.
After 3 fairly light dishes, we were ready for something a bit heavier and they delivered with a custom recipe created by the chef that evening.
Alpaca tender loin on top of a spring-onion omelette and a pork-belly fried rice with caramelized onions and sun-dried tomatoes.
My mouth is watering while I write this. I mean…alpaca… really???
Then came the last savory dish before dessert.
Grilled octopus, salsa anticucho, black garlic chimichurri, potato & chorizo croquettes. Sometimes octopus can be rubbery and gross, but this octopus was melt-in-your-mouth delicious.
I was in food heaven by this point and couldn’t believe it got even better when dessert came…
Pumpkin Peruvian picarones with dulce de lecce. Literally, THE perfect end to the meal. We wiped up every last bit.
The entire meal was perfectly paced and all of the dishes blended so well together, not to mention the gorgeous plating. The atmosphere of the restaurant was quaint, relaxed, and our service was incredible. Also, we were both able to relax and be fully present during the entire meal, which was such a welcome change. We’re always rushing to head from here to there, so it was such a treat to just sit and enjoy a truly amazing meal with each other for 2 hours.
I’d eat there every week if I could.
If you live in Eugene or are ever traveling through the area, Membrillo is a MUST.
We were able to snag tickets to see Tanya Barfield’s Blue Door and it was such a unique and special artistic experience that I’ll never forget. We were in the front row in a small, black-box theater with a two-man cast.
Blue Door centers around a black-man named Lewis’s inner-turmoil initiated by his wife’s decision to leave him because he won’t participate in the Million Man March on Washington… and housework. Sleepless nights ensue as Lewis is visited by people from his past. He struggles with his African-American roots and his cultural identity, which he has completely dismissed in his career as a mathematician.
Art teaches in a way like nothing else can. Not only was my mind opened, my soul grieved with the extreme oppression of African-Americans for centuries.
The play is on for one more week at the Oregon Contemporary Theater. Please go see it.
Good food, good company, and good art— all a soul really needs.
I’ll be back on Wednesday with a follow-up to last week’s talk about stress. I’ll be talking all about self-care. Hint: this weekend was a good example.
Thanks for reading!