Last week, my family and I spent a few days in Galena, Illinois. This beauty-of-a-historic-town had it’s boom during the 1800’s when lead ore was in demand, and at one time it’s population exceeded that of Chicago. Now, instead of bustling with riverboat commerce, it bustles with tourists. Attractions include quaint shops, exemplary restaurants, President Grant’s home, hilly streets with beautiful old mansions, and the sleepy Galena River where one can walk atop the levy for a nice view of the river and town.
Back to the exemplary restaurants…
We splurged one night and ate at Fried Green Tomatoes, a highly-rated establishment that features—you guessed it—fried green tomatoes. (Delicious, by the way, even if the tomato was mostly a vehicle for melted cheese and a marinara sauce. Mmm…) The setting was lovely, with exposed brick walls, dark wood, and elegant light fixtures that were dimmed for appropriate ambiance.
The attentive waitstaff brought us warm parmesan-encrusted Italian bread and a big bowl of salad for sharing. Our entrees were exceptional. Here are the exact descriptions from the menu:
Chicken Marsala—a breaded chicken breast sautéed with marsala wine sauce with mushrooms, potatoes and roasted onions. (Me)
Tortalloni—spinach and roasted garlic stuffed pasta, tossed with asparagus, zucchini and tomatoes in a citrus cream sauce. (Husband)
Gnocchi Primavera—potato gnocchi sautéed with sweet peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, and sugar snap peas in sesame oil. (Nineteen year-old vegetarian daughter)
Meat Lasagna—hand rolled with fresh cheese and sausage with our house red sauce. (Seventeen year-old carnivorous son)
Our conversation ran along these lines:
“You have got to try this.”
“This is so good.”
Too stuffed for dessert, we walked one block over to the above-mentioned levy where we enjoyed the mild temps and a black sky painted with stars. Tree frogs serenaded us as we strolled along, wrapped in the peacefulness of the quiet town. There was sweetness in simply being in each other’s company and enjoying the moment.
Beautiful details; beautiful blessings.