December 21, 2008

Local Dining

Posted in Journal tagged , , , , at 10:36 pm by Jenn

Last night we finally ate at a local Azeri restaurant….FINALLY.  We’ve been here for 7 months now and eaten out every week since we’ve been here and last night was our first Azeri dining experience. 

I really didn’t know what to expect for dinner actually.  On Friday Scott said, to me “Hey, Ben wants to know if we want to go for pork chops and vodka on Saturday.”  Me, being me said sure.  I had no idea that it was going to be like this…

The 10 of us meet at a local bar.  We then pile in to one car and one taxi and head off to the restaurant.  I don’t know what the name of the restaurant was but it was near the Azercell building just off of the old Airport Road.  It didn’t really look like a restaurant at all.  It was a two or three story, dark building.  We entered gave our party name (there were 10 of us) and then were escorted outside, through a courtyard, in to another building, up the stairs and in to a private room where the table was set, and salads and pickles were on the table waiting for us. 

There are no menus.  Brian (one of the members of our group) just said….”who wants pork?  who wants chicken?” and then ordered.  He also ordered fresh pomegranate juice, fanta, water and vodka.  Russian Standard vodka.  two bottles, one for each side of the table. 

The salads and the pickles were interesting.  There was a plate of greens…things like dill, cilantro and basil I think.  This stuff is just eaten like a palate cleanser…in between pickles.  The cilantro is really yummy!  There was bread, pickled tomatoes, pickled plums, cheese, cucumbers, pickled cucumbers and yogurt.  Now the yogurt was in a glass at each place setting.  Scott tasted his.  Vangie tasted hers.  I attempted to taste mine, but when I tipped my glass the yogurt didn’t move.  I mean it was NOT moving.  Stuck.  So I opted out of the yogurt tasting at that point.  Besides, there were some little dust fibers collecting on top so I really didn’t want to taste it anyway.

The first course of food comes, it is little handmade lamb sausage type things.  I didn’t eat them.  In fact I didn’t even try them.  I could smell them and that was enough for me.  There is something about the smell of lamb fat that just gets caught in the back of my throat…I can’t do it.  There were some nice little fried potato things that were tasty…except for the fact that they were served on the same plate as the lamb sausage things so they had a little lamb fat juice on them….the vodka killed the taste.  In fact, the two bottles of vodka were gone shortly after this course was served and two more were ordered, and consumed rather quickly.  For some reason we were doing toasts every 10 minutes or so…yeah, that was smart.

The main course was served and it was grilled chicken, grilled pork and eggplant.  Unfortunately the eggplant contained a LAMB FAT surprise, so I didn’t eat that, but the meat was really tasty.  They also brought plates of pomegranate and a dish of some plummy sauce stuff that was good with the pork.

More vodka – yes really.

For dessert we were served sliced fruits.  There were 3 kinds of apples, clementines, kumquats, something that tasted like a starfruit, but wasn’t a starfruit and jam.  Just jam.  Good jam, cherry jam.

Next they brought tea.  They serve the tea in little glasses, not cups, glasses.  Kind of like the size that the pimento cheese comes in…you know, the kind grammy’s save and use for juice glasses.  That size, but fancier than the pimento cheese ones.  I put a sugar cube in mine, and a slice of lemon.   I watched the guy across from me put some of the cherry jam in his.  Interesting.  I tried it.  It was good.

More vodka…which at this point is beyond necessary.  One member of our party who shall remain nameless was TRASHED by this point.  We were all pretty amused by him and I’m sure he was hating life today as he is supposed to be flying back to the states.  He hadn’t packed yet and had to do a little work today before he leaves.  Yeah, he’s probably not going to drink vodka for a very long time.  Scott probably won’t either.

I’m skipping a lot of the story because I’m looking at the word counter now and it’s at 750 words.  I can remember having to write 500 word essays in school and complaining.  LOL. 

Anyway, Scott was trashed.  Not as trashed as the other guy, but trashed enough to be getting on my nerves.  I wasn’t drunk enough to think he was funny.  He decided he was going to watch tv before going to bed….around 2am I was awakened by the sound of him praying to the porcelain gods.  LOUDLY.  When he was finished he walked back out to the living room and as he passed the bedroom he was mumbling something about “bad pork”…yeah, um, it had nothing to do with the liter of vodka that he consumed.

So that’s it.  Our first local dining experience.  Would I do it again.  Absolutely.  With less vodka of course.

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3 Comments »

  1. Heather said,

    Maybe if you’d have had more of the vodka, you’d have tried more of the food. You and your fat phobias!!! Don’t pretend it’s just with lamb!!!

    :O)

  2. sjsmart said,

    There’s not enough vodka in Baku to get me to eat lamb fat. Lamb fat really is nasty. I tried everything on the table except for the obviously lamb items. That was only two things that I didn’t eat….well, there was a third one. Some kind of unidentified fruit or nut scary looking thing. : 0

  3. Jen D said,

    I am rolling! LOL! Gotta watch out for that bad pork, dude, it’ll get you every time.


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