I thought I would drop in and let you know that I am, indeed, still alive. Unfortunately, some new health concerns have arisen to put a damper on culinary enthusiasm (and life in general. . . boo, no more whining, I promise). Here is a little of life lately. . .
If you live on the East Coast of the U.S., you may have heard that we have another winter storm on. Right before the last one, J. and I made an impromptu trip to Georgia. We got there just in time to enjoy a little “family bondage” (a cousin meant to say “family bonding”, but this alternate version now has a permanent place of honor in the Baird family lexicon!).
It is amazing how long kids will play “I spy, with my little eye”! Jason, his superhero dad, and a cousin spent the next three days keeping 4 houses afloat with two generators, my mother-in-law kept twelve people fed three times a day despite a nasty cold, and I colored, “I spy-ed”, and hide-and-go-seeked my heart out!
After a visit further south with my folks, Jason surprised me with a mini vacation on the way back to D.C. We spent a morning wandering around it the sunshine in Savannah, browsing Broughton St. and people watching in the park before heading just an hour upcoast to Beaufort, S.C. We attended a festival on the waterfront there during college, and came away with the impression that it was a hidden treasure. Twelve years later, and a few days of down time: it is a really comfortable, relaxing, FRIENDLY place to pass some time. The waterfront is lined with rows of porch swings, truly amazing homes spread for ten blocks back from the water, the food is good, and the views are lovely. There is nothing fancy happening: this is not a shopping mecca, nightlife seems fairly non-existant, the beach is not easily accessible, and away from the waterfront the town becomes a bit run down, shut down, fast-foodie. So, if you are a mover and a shaker who doesn’t care for an extreme change of pace, you might want to keep going up I-95 until you hit the Charleston exit. But if you are looking for a pleasant place to pass a weekend, keep Beaufort in mind.
The sheltered warmth of Beaufort made me long to see the ocean: inland warmth is deceptive, and sunshine is fleeting! It was plum cold down at Hunting Beach State Park.Scare the wolf! If this reference means nothing to you, disregard. Otherwise, greetings from the lost boys in Neverland!Yep, did I mention. . .Plum. . .Cold.
Places we tried and enjoyed: Blackstone’s Cafe– great atmosphere, super friendly service, plain ol’ diner breakfast food, but with surprising gluten-free options (if you spend time traveling g.f. in the South, you will understand what a pleasant find this was!). Lowcountry Produce Market Cafe– really good food, lovely building, and fun browsing of local food and artisan goods. Panini’s Cafe– usually we skip places with enormous menus, but this one had the little “gf” symbol all over it (again, rare) so we had to give it a go. It was great, and the waterfront side completely undersells what is waiting within. Brick pizza oven and prep area out in the middle of the dining room, soaring ceiling, huge deck overlooking the waterfront, and solidly good food. City Java and News– good hot chocolate and latte.
While in Beaufort I recommend: strolling through the neighborhoods, and don’t ignore the overgrown, dead end streets- they are the best! A visit to Hunting Beach State Park- a bit of a drive, but well worth it on a warm day. Grab yourself a waterside swing, or a bench, or a hummock of grass and just enjoy the view. Have you ever been to Beaufort, South Carolina? I’d love to hear about your time there; leave a note in the comments below.