Friday, May 21, 2010

Did you miss me?

I've been gone awhile.  Did you miss me, Buttercups?

Well, I'm back with a vengeance.

So today, my lovely Aunt/Godmother took me out for lunch at one of my absolutely favorite places in my hometown - the Cotton lounge.  It's not too too pricey, but a bit more upscale from something I would buy for myself or a place I would take my poor college friends for an evening out.

This place is GORGEOUS.  The inside is vintage movie posters and travel advertisements, and I am a sucker for vintage prints.  The bar has a soft accent light around it, and the music is always a little on the swing side, lots of Sinatra and Dino being played.  If I were 21, I'd probably get some serious cocktail on here.

The outside deck was open for the gorgeous weather today, so we elected to do some lunching outside.  This place used to be called Cafe Pavone when I was a kid, and I remember doing fancy lunches here even as a young girl, under the grape vines and wooden beams.

A little bread and oil to start, iced tea for the table, and my uncle's wine glass.  Bread and oil, surprisingly, isn't European.  If you travel to Italy or elsewhere, don't expect it to be served.  Nevertheless, I do like my crispy bread and oil from time to time.

My lunch entree - pan-seared scallops with greens tossed with bleu cheese and pistachios.  An extra crab-cake on the side.  Their crabcakes are really fricken good, and are offered in several entrees and appetizers with Maryland sauce, as burger patties, or as I did, as an available salad addition.  Scallops weren't seasoned too heavily, and the greens were fresh and not overly doused in vinaigrette.  Some people shy away from seafood - the beauty of being raised Greek is an appreciation for seafood and vegetables.

Please ignore the fact that I tossed real sugar in my iced tea today, at least it's better than Splenda or Sweet N Low.  I love the sweet tea, ever since my freshman year trip to New Orleans.  I also learned to love crawdaddies, but that is another discussion.

After lunch, there was coffee (no photo - I get self-conscious being food paparazzi all the time).

Cotton is one of those places I really enjoy.  Atmosphere is pretty excellent.  Clientele tends to be a bit older than myself, the lunch crowd is usually local business people (It's located in the Millyards, and most mill buildings have been converted to office spaces) and owners.  Generally, the regulars such as my aunt and uncle, know the other guests and the staff, and are friendly.  Dinner crowd ranges all age groups, and entrees include awesome comfort-food fare like their supreme meatloaf dish, stellar burgers, Cuban sandwiches, salads, and seafood fare.  The wine list, which I'll be attacking come August, is pretty extensive for the fairly small restaurant that Cotton is.  And like I said, it wasn't exactly cheap, but not out of the price range for a fairly nice evening out.

I love, love, love Cotton. 

Cotton Restaurant

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