Weekend in Ashland
We were all eager to head down to Ashland, but it didn't stop us from getting grumpy as we bumped into each other getting ready Friday evening. I had done some packing the evening before, plus Liseanne had offered to make dinner while we were still at work. Yet another time saver. It was probably 6:30 by the time we were heading south.
Four of us decided to stay in a motel since the main reason we were driving down was to help youngest daughter Fran's boyfriend J move from apartment to house. We chose a kitchenette with a separate bedroom and a sleeper couch. After checking in and then checking out the room, we discovered that a sleeper sofa in a motel is much like what I remember from staying over at relatives; a thin foam pad and a bar across the back. :>( Liseanne and her J opted to put the mattress on the floor to avoid the body bruising effects of the bar. Our next discovery was that the air conditioning unit in our bedroom didn't circulate as well with the bedroom door closed. So much for privacy. The rest was good - N and I had a comfy bed and a lot of movies to choose from on the TV and there was an okay spread in the breakfast room both mornings.
Even though we didn't start until 9:45, the move went better than any of the others I can remember. It was good having the extra help and all of the college textbooks still in boxes from the last move. We stopped for a late lunch (around 1 PM), hopped into vehicles and drove the short distance downtown to eat.
There are so many options for eating out in Ashland, but we always try to work in a meal at Munchies. They have a cozy, friendly atmosphere, with varied menu choices, a reasonably priced menu, AND CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER PIE (among several other delicious desserts). I'm still kicking myself for not buying a pie to go. Even with 4 people left in the house, it would probably last a week.
That evening (on the late side) we went to Standing Stone Brewing Company for dinner. We were elated that even the cleaning part of move was completed, so we felt like celebrating. There was a short (15 minutes) wait for a table for the 6 of us. We enjoyed the live music from the Glenn Millerish type band playing in the back of the establishment while we sat and waited. This brewery, with it's efficient and friendly staff, has a more contemporary feel compared to a McMenamin's.
Once we were seated at our table near the bar, we all ordered our drinks; 2 ambers, 2 porters and one honey cream ale. Their porter reminded me of McMenamin's Terminator without the chocolate & coffee undertones. The honey cream ale, tasted exactly like it's name suggested - light, smooth with a slightly sweet honey flavor. Since youngest daughter's boyfriend lives in Ashland, I asked for his food recommendations. He said the burgers were okay, but said that their wood fired pizzas were excellent. Five of us ordered individual pizzas; Spicy BBQ Chicken, a Greek, an Olive & Spinach Tapenade, a Three Meat, a Standing Stone Italian Sausage and the 6th diner in our group ordered Fish and Chips with garlic fries.
Okay, maybe my girls are right, perhaps I am easy to please when it comes to dining out, but my pizza WAS delicious - really. The sliced red onions were the perfect compliment to the barbecued chicken and mozzarella. Youngest daughter Fran and N said their pizzas were delicious, too. But both Liseanne and Fran's J said that their pizzas were burnt enough on the bottom of the crust to affect the flavor. The garlic fries I stole from the fish and chips plate, were worth distracting the owner more than once. (Sorry James!)
A stroll around downtown would've been the perfect ending to our meal, but after our busy day sleep seemed like the best ending of all. I look forward to our next trip south - for both the good company AND the next Ashland dining experience.