Lately, when we have date night, (we try to have an evening alone at least once a month, more if our schedule allows) we send Murray somewhere overnight, slip into comfy clothes, and cook something fabulous in the comfort of our own kitchen. Then we spend the evening sharing delicious food, wine, conversation, a movie or mean game of Scrabble or Rummy.
But we do love to treat ourselves to dinner out once in a while. Ruth's Chris Steakhouse is one of our favorites, as well as Axel's, but since we don't have either restaurant here in Moorhead, we have to get creative. Thankfully, that's not hard to do. Little ol' Moorhead, MN has some gems for fine dining.
Sarello's, a tiny, exclusive Italian reservation-only restaurant is where Craig took me on our third date. Usher's House, which has great food and a fabulous view of the river, is another favorite. But, hands down, the best restaurant (in our opinion) in Moorhead is John Alexander's.
Last night we got dressed up, dropped off little guy, and off we went. Craig wouldn't tell me what he had in mind, so I was pleasantly surprised when he drove us to John Alexander's, only a few blocks from our house.
We weren't disappointed. We never are when we eat there. Soft lighting, quiet conversation, a fabulous menu - we were feeling all swanky and relaxed and giddy. We ordered an excellent bottle of Pinot Noir.
And oysters on the half shell for an appetizer:
Although I love seafood, this was my first time eating oysters. I found them to be surprisingly delightful. John Alexander's has their oysters shipped daily, so they couldn't have been more fresh unless we were dining in Nantucket (I think it's true that oysters are an aphrodisiac, ahem, blush).
For the main course, we each ordered the Steak Alexander, which is a beautiful cut of petite tenderloin grilled to perfection (medium rare for us) served with crisp asparagus and choice of creamy mashed potatoes (like no other we've ever eaten) or Tomato Basil Orzo (again, like no other). Our taste buds were absolutely jumping for joy. We lingered over the last of our wine and left feeling like newlyweds.
Next we went for a drink and a bit of Gopher Hockey at JC Chumley's - The Cheers Bar of Moorhead.
We were home by eight, snuggled up on the couch talking and watching "X-Men." Certainly not my choice, but considering Craig always rents us a "chick flick", I decided it was his turn. Besides, compromise is an important ingredient of any healthy relationship.
Besides providing you with a local restaurant review (you're welcome), my point is this: Don't forget to bring the romance alive again, and often. Sometimes, we get so involved in the daily grind that we forget what's really important in marriage: each other.
I highly recommend the oysters.