The weekend of celebrating continued onto Saturday with my in-laws 50th wedding anniversary.
My husband is from Youngstown, where his folks and one brother still live. When we asked them what they wanted to do for this very big day, they (thankfully) suggested dinner in Cleveland (let’s just say Youngstown does not offer a tempting independent dining scene). My mother-in-law asked if we could try Blue Canyon, since we took them there for her birthday once before and they really enjoyed it.
If you a regular reader of this blog, you know I’ve written about BC several times, both good and bad. The bulk of our visits have been enjoyable but there have been occasions where the food did not meet expectations. Since Jamie’s family doesn’t come up to Cleveland too often, and are an extremely picky group of eaters (meat and potatoes only and don’t try to sneak in anything funny), we had pretty much everything crossed that this would be one of the better times – especially since it was for such a wonderful occasion.
We arrived at the restaurant first to make sure we had a good table, drop off some champagne (they let you bring in your own champagne and cake – nice touch) and to put the present on the table before heading to the patio to meet the rest of the family. When I called to make the reservation, I asked for a good table and explained why. Well, we definitely had a good table with a nice view and they even had a small bouquet of flowers in the center for their anniversary – another great touch!
On the patio, everyone got drinks and commented on the outdoor space. I knew they would like this. The patio at Blue Canyon is easily one of the best in town with no expense spared. I’ve written before about how much we enjoy this patio. In fact, if I won the lottery, I’d like to have the bar area recreated in my backyard (of the new pad I’d quickly build right on the water).
Once inside, we were quickly greeted by our server, Jana. We’ve actually had her a few times before. From the second we sat down to the time we left, service was exceptional. Everyone seemed to comment on this. Service can really make or break your experience, and on Saturday it was spot on.
For our meals, everyone seemed to order something different, from steak to pretzel-crusted trout, to the cod, to pizza for the kids. For myself, I started with the locally grown heirloom tomato stuffed with Alaska king crab salad with lemon mascarpone and balsamic reduction. For the main course, I went with the scallops with a black bean and corn salsa and mashed potatoes.
Let’s start with the salad. In a word – wow. I can’t believe just how good this stuffed tomato was. I think I scarred my two brothers-in-law, who I sat between, because I couldn’t stop talking about it. The idea of loving food and savoring every bite is a foreign concept to them. I also warned each of them not to be alarmed if they saw my fork go for something on their plate. I was partially kidding until I saw Bob’s watermelon and feta salad – I couldn’t resist and did steal a bite. Wow, another good salad – but not nearly as good as mine. This dish was beautifully presented on simple white dinnerware and so fresh. I was very pleased.
Thankfully, my scallops were also equally as impressive. In the past, I’ve noticed the scallops to be a bit on the salty side – but not this time. Each was seared and seasoned perfectly, and I enjoyed each and every bite of the mashed potatoes (although part of me wished I would have upgraded to the lobster mashed -next time).
I wasn’t the only one that was happy. Everyone was pleased with their selection, especially my father-in-law, who had the flank steak with blue cheese. He’s a sucker for anything smothered in blue cheese and he was smiling with each bite. The only negative item I heard was from Jamie, who felt his steak was slightly over cooked, but that didn’t seem to stop him from cleaning his plate.
In all honesty, this was easily the best meal I’ve had at Blue Canyon yet. And more importantly, my in-laws were so happy to be surrounded by their family – they truly had a great evening celebrating their 50 years together.
As we were leaving, I asked Pete, my father-in-law, what the secret was to making it 50 years. He said, “every answer is, yes dear.” Smart man, Pete. Smart man.