Normally when my husband and I travel, we spend a lot of time enjoying the local cuisine. But for this trip, we actually ate out very little. We always had the free breakfast at our hotel and usually went out for dinner, but lunch was just snacking on granola, hard boiled eggs, fruit, or Slim Jims. Part of the reason was that after a huge hotel breakfast we just were not hungry for lunch, and the other reason was we were always in a hurry to get to our next destination did not want to take time to eat.
But we did have a few memorable meals I'd like to share with you.
Our first stop was North Platte, Nebraska. It was just a travel stop to rest for the night. Our hotel was right off the freeway so there was no where to eat other than chain restaurants. Applebees was one of the choices, so we went there. We love their "2 for $20" specials, so we got the classic hamburger and salad plates. Oh, these burgers were so good!
The next day's pit stop was Fuita, Colorado. Here we had the opportunity to venture off the main highway a bit and go into their downtown historic district. We decided to eat at Suds bros. Brewery.
This was a fun, casual dining experience with both indoor and outdoor dining. I was craving a salad, so I ordered a taco salad and my husband got fish and chips.
I loved the fun colored chips and the fact that I did not have to pay extra for guacamole.
Perhaps our fanciest dining experience was in Las Vegas....where else? Las Vegas is known for their fine restaurants. In fact, prior to my trip while I was having my semi-annual dentist appointment, my dental hygienist asked me what restaurants I planned to go to while in Vegas. She advised back then that I make a reservation now because the best restaurants fill up fast (that was about three months before my trip). I did not heed her advice because I had no definite idea of what our time table would be like in Vegas.
We ended up having pizza twice in Vegas...mostly because it was quick and easy. There was so much to see and do in Vegas, and we didn't have a whole lot of time so we didn't want to spend much time eating. I never took a picture of our pizza or the place, but it was located inside the Flamingo hotel and it was delicious and affordable! They gave you a huge slice of pizza for around $7.00.
A lot of people who had been to Vegas before warned us that food and beverages can be quite costly. Yes, that's true. A bottle of water can cost up to $7.00 in Vegas and there are no drinking fountains anywhere! Seriously, if you want a drink of water in Vegas, you have to pay for it. There are people who sell soda and water out of coolers for $1.00, so I ended up buying a water bottle from them. No way was I going to pay $7.00 for a bottle of water!
There are traditional fast food restaurants with almost normal prices on the strip if you are trying to save money. We saw a McDonalds, Chipotle, Panda's Express, and more. We did eat lunch at both the Chipotle and Panda Express to save money. There are also several Walgreen stores where you can buy healthy snacks and drinks, plus salads and sandwiches.
We did enjoy one fine restaurant in Vegas, but that was only because a dear cousin treated us! He happened to be in the area on business and took us out to dinner. It is a gourmet Mexican restaurant called Javier's and it is located inside the Aria hotel.
The design of this restaurant is so interesting. There is a canopy of ropes surrounding the establishment.
The lighting was so dark I could barely see my hand in front of my face, so please excuse these horrible photos. I debated posting them at all, but then considering this was the best restaurant we ate at during the entire trip, I knew I had to share them regardless of the photo quality.
My husband and I both ordered enchiladas. I got a seafood enchilada plate. The tortillas were stuffed with shrimp and crab. I really loved the sliced avocado on top and the beans.
Of course, presentation is everything in gourmet restaurants as you can tell by how beautifully arranged the garnishes are in these platters.
The best thing about this restaurant was the service. The staff was so extremely attentive, they had a separate waiter just for filling your water glasses, and there was even staff inside the restroom. That was a first time experience for me...I never had someone squirt soap into my hands and hand me a towel before! I'm such a middle-class girl!
The last memorable restaurant we enjoyed was in Vail, Colorado at Vendetta's. My husband and I were just casually walking their gorgeous streets when he smelled a heavenly scent so we went and checked it out!
The wonderful aroma was coming from this restaurant. It was a beautiful day and we thought it would be nice to sit outside and enjoy our lunch.
The restaurant had a lovely mountain and street view.
The pizza was probably one of the best pizzas I have ever had in my life. I loved the crust! It was toasted to perfection, and very light and flaky.
And that is all my favorite meals I ate on vacation. We actually spent very little money on food on this trip. I don't think we ever spent more than $30.00 per day, if that. Occasionally I would buy a $5.00 chai tea latte in the afternoon, but not everyday. We ended up eating at a lot of chain restaurants because there weren't any local restaurants nearby. That was a bit of a disappointment to me, but not to my husband. He prefers chain restaurants because he always knows what to expect. We were surprised to find a Culvers Restaurant in Utah. We had no idea they had any restaurants that far west. In fact, a customer was coming out of the restaurant and saw our Wisconsin license plates and said "Oh, you guys must feel at home now!". She had recently visited our state and knew there was a Culver's on every corner. It was fun chatting with her for a bit.
Have a Great Day! Amy
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