Williamsburg

Since I’d been unable to go on the variety of other Williamsburg trips (IVF can really limit your travel), Gloria proposed we go this summer for a weekend. So we did in July! I wasn’t super pregnant so I was ambulatory if a little slow, and we had a really nice time. Thanks, Gloria, for doing so much of the organizing!

We first stopped at the local antique mall to browse and we had dessert and tea at this cute little tea shop in the mall.

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The desserts were homemade and so good!
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I managed to not buy this baby cheetah.
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We had dinner at a local French restaurant with Samantha, who is a friend of many friends but who I hadn’t really met before. She was lovely. Unfortunately they sat us right next to the accordian player, who was good but quite loud. :-/ I ordered a scallop dish which had a nice taste, but those scallops were a crime against scallops. They were purportedly diver scallops – which are the most expensive kind because they are hand harvested. I suspect they were not really, because they tasted like wet scallops, which had been frozen before. i.e. very tough Scallops should be like butter and very tender, and they are delicious when done right. You really want dry scallops, which are more expensive than wet, but they are fresher and less tough because they aren’t water-logged or filled with preservatives.

Anyway, I actually sent back the scallop dish because they were almost inedible – and the dish had been baked. They gave me the other scallop dish on the menu, but they were still tough, so I think they just used shitty scallops. Which is a shame because again, they were priced high and the restaurant had gotten good reviews, but blech. Doug went out and bought good scallops at the Annapolis Seafood Market while I was gone and we had them when I got back and I felt much better. ha!

THis was the offending dish. It really was a shame because the flavors were really nice. They just needed to use good scallops and after the dish was baked, just put seared scallops on top instead of baking them in it. It would have been great.
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Dessert was pretty good.
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The next day, Gloria and I got massages at the Williamsburg spa, and wandered around town after.
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We did hit the museum, which is enough off the beaten path that I’m not sure many people know it’s there. Which is a shame and people should visit it, it’s really great!

Love this banjo chair from the early 20th century.
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And this pie safe
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This seal was George Washington’s and you can see it in one of his portraits:
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This red embroidered regency dress was lovely:
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Lovely buckles:
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They museum also had an exhibit of printed 18th century clothes, which was really cool. I’ll post a few highlights, and just head to the Flickr set for the rest. https://www.flickr.com/photos/maggie42/albums/72157686381597493

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The exhibit contrasted this embroidered men’s waistcoat…
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With this one which is printed but mimics the idea of it (with far less handwork). It looks embroidered though, if you note the detailing on the pockets and buttons:
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For those of you who worry about imperfections in your work – here is a mismatch in the print!
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There were two famous examples of stomachers – but they were concerned with the reverse sides – because they had been lined with scraps of a block printed fabric – which was well-preserved because it wasn’t worn on the outside, it was on the inside, so it hasn’t faded.

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This is a photo of the front:
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I love the names of these sisters:
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There was also a large exhibit of period pianos and spinets and and harpsichords and other similar instruments. They had private speakers so you could hear what the instrument sounded like.

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Gloria and I met Chelsea (another costumer) for coffee at the Culture Cafe – along with her newborn daughter, who was born on my birthday, so she’s about 5 weeks old here. The coffee and desserts were all phenomenal and the company was great too! Flowerless chocolate cake, a peach cobbler, and an apple dumpling thing.
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We stopped by the millenary shop – love this 18th century doll with a calash:
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We had dinner at the King’s Arms Tavern:
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There was some initial disappointment because they no longer had an appetizer I was interested in on their menu. And their menu is very meat-based, and I was not super hungry (pregnancy plus heat) and I was skeptical. I ultimately ordered the Chop of Shoat and it turned out to be excellent and hit the spot. Description: Maple and whiskey-brined Pork Chop with a Grain-mustard Glaze and Sauce served with Mashed Potatoes and Haricot Vert Green Beans It was well-cooked and not too heavy. the sauce was delicious, and I think I ate the whole thing.

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We had breakfast the next morning at Blue Talon Bistro and it was spectacular. The bacon, the cheese grits… you know what was good? The ham biscuit. Who would have thought a biscuit with ham would be so good. It seems like it would be dry or something, but it was amazing. It was so much food I brought it home. Actually, the ham biscuit got eaten in the car.

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Here are the scallops Doug and I made. Dry scallops properly seared!
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