Sunday, 24 January 2010

A visual feast and a blurry evening...


And a GREAT morning to you on this (dare I say almost sunny?) FABULOUS Sunday in the mother country. What a great Saturday we had! When we last left off, we were about to bounce out of the house bound for Piccadilly Circus. The goal of the day was "Jersey Boys," and JT and I were ALL pumped to go. However, we showed up to find that the DISCOUNTED tickets were 79 pounds each. The next cheapest shows were still in the 50+ range (full price and not great seats), and so, dejected, JT and I walked away from "the window that NEVER fails me," wondering how we were going to spend our afternoon.

We didn't have to wait long, however, as we realized that we were in Leicester Square, home to the UK's largest movie theater: The Odeon Cinema complex. Consequently, 10 minutes later the Taylor's had procured tickets to enter the world of...wait for it...wait for it...AVATAR (You should NOT be here - Mom and Steve - that was for you, and I couldn't help but chuckle when that line came up in the movie).

However, given that it was 12:45 and the show wasn't until 3:15, we had to grab some grub. So we took a walk over to Strand and hit up Zizzi's (Jon and Michele - it's the same one you guys hit with Jenny before Phantom). We spent the next almost 2 hours kicked back enjoying some GREAT pizza and just relaxing.
But on a totally random side note, we passed a French wine bar on the walk back to the theater. This place (called "Terroirs"), had a sign out front that has me absolutely bamboozled. I mean, don't get me wrong, I love my random East Tennessee phrases ("madder than a wet hornet" being the phrase of choice lately), but seriously - can ANYONE make sense of the phrase in the picture to the left?

The movie itself is truly mind-blowing. Whilst I agree that it's not the strongest plot I've ever watched, the visual effects are like NOTHING I have ever seen, and I think Avatar has truly ushered in a new era of cinema. It was THOROUGHLY entertaining from start to finish, with great music, SEAMLESS special effects, great performances, and pretty relentless action. Mr. Cameron - full marks, yet again.

After that, we rolled over to Shaftsbury, where we hit a Belgian Beer joint that I'd been wanting to try. And Benny, if you're reading this one, you'll notice that fleece I'm wearing is the one you gave me 13 YEARS ago during my freshman year at Carolina - that's right - still going strong and STILL my favorite fleece.
As fate would have it, this place (called "De Hems") is the same one that Jason Wade and I hit back in 2005 (and it was SO GOOD). We had a table outside under the heaters, and we sampled some GREAT stuff. Shogun, as I expect you'll ONLY be satisfied if I give you the list, here's what we tried:

1. Duvel Green
2. Mardesous 8

3. Delirium Tremens

4. Westmalle (Tripel)

5. Tripel Karmeleit

All, as expected, were DELICIOUS. You drink Belgian Beer in 1/2 pints because it's so strong, and we tried to not buck that trend. Delirium Tremens is Jenny's favorite, but I think that the Duvel Green was the best of the night (and so I had to go back and get a whole pint of it, which might have been the reason for the headache this morning).

After that, we walked into Chinatown and hit up the Moon Tong (the spot beside the usual one) and had THE BEST Chinese food we've ever had as a couple. We tore through a half duck (there was nothing left but bones and a vapor trail), as well as Lamb chili (HOT AS BALLS) and some Kung Po Chicken (move over PF Chang's). Throw in a cheap bottle of GOOD Italian wine, and that's an indulgent night for the books.

We had another 12 hours sleep, and I can still feel a little pain in the back of my head. Oh well, time to rally, because today is one of FURTHER indulgence, as the Americans are in town, and it's time for a right pub crawl prior to the Conference Championships! A late, but EXTRA AWESOME day is in the works!

Okay, that's all the news that's fit to print. Chat tomorrow!


Sam and Jenny

1 comment:

  1. Sam, glad to see you are not able to leave a Belgian beer place without trying at least 5 beers. Reading your blog makes me miss our trip there a few years back. Anychance you'll be stateside for the Superbowl? Michele and I will be down in Charlotte for a weekend. Anyway, keep pounding 'em back.
    - JB