The second day of Kathy’s visit to Savannah started out with her staying “home” at Green Palm Inn, a Savannah bed and breakfast to let the workers into our cottage inn. I was out running extended errands during this one week in August when we had closed the inn for renovations like painting, reupholstering chairs, replacing appliances, and more! The inn always needs to look wonderfully fresh without disturbing my guests.
My best friend Kathy had arrived by Amtrak from Florida for a welcomed visit. Normally, she works partially from her home, so she was spent part of her time at the inn catching up with her project, as well as working on some edits for a book she has written. Thankfully, she was able to keep the worker bees at the inn on tasks while I did my running for supplies and plants.
We decided to go to Cha Bella for dinner that night. It’s just across the street from the Inn, and I had purchased a Groupon certificate for the restaurant. We decided to sit in the bar for dinner to watch folks coming and going that evening. Joe, the bartender was concocting brews of sangria, both white and red. I decided to taste the white and was glad I did. It was very smooth and peachy with just enough pizzazz. Joe was very knowledgeable of their menu and offered beverage pairings with the food.
Kathy was debating between the steak entree and the shrimp/pasta dinner, asking to switch out the shrimp for chicken. She is not a sea food eater, even though her favorite past time is deep sea fishing.
Joe’s detailed description of the steak dinner with a Merlot wine was dead on. The steak was a melt in your mouth Hangar steak with pureed potatoes, Swiss chard and onions. The Swiss chard was a first for Kathy, she is originally a Yankee from the north (Michigan) and did not even know the first thing about Swiss chard. She raved about the dish and there was no need to wash that plate because there was nothing left of the meal. I think she licked it clean!!!
I decided on the yellow fin tuna, medium rare with Jalapeno grits. Fabulous! Just enough heat to showcase the tuna. I too did not need to have my plate cleaned. It was beyond good!!
Since both of us were full beyond belief, we had no intention of ordering dessert. Then came Joe, the bartender. He approached our table with a knowledgeable smile. He then described the desserts with such passion, you could almost see the drool on his face. His first hand knowledge of these sweet delectables was evident. He was so into the descriptions of the desserts and the perfect wines to pair with them, we could not resist. We shared a little blue crock filled with caramel pot de crème topped with an expresso cream. (Kathy loved the presentation so much, I may have to purchase some of the crocks for her for Christmas.) It was so smooth, light, and tasty! It was paired with a Sicilian dessert wine, Ben Rye’s Donnafugala. Unbelievably good!
We also shared a lemony goat cheese cake made in a pecan/graham cracker crust paired with a light tasting merlot. Kathy is not a big cheese fan, but once again there were nothing left of either dessert or wine when it was time to ask for the bill. (By the way, I did not eat all of that cheesecake either. Just wanted to be clear about that.)
Two other wait staff assisted Joe with servicing our table. We wanted for nothing nor did we wait long for any portion of our meal. The knowledge Joe has of the foods and the wines was very impressive. The friendliness of all that work there is appreciated and also very extraordinary. It was truly a fun, enjoyable, dining experience.
Having eaten way too much food, we decided to stroll slowly down to the waterfront to see what new things have popped up since I was down there last. It was a nice comfortable walk to the Savannah Riverfront. Not too hot or humid, which is unusual for this time of the year. Kathy was impressed with Savannah’s talking walk signals. It is a nice touch for anyone with a disability.
We did not see many people milling about on the way down to the riverfront. However, once we arrived down on the river walk, we saw all the tourists bustling about in the stores, restaurants, bars, and on both sides of the street. The Savannah nightlife was in full swing.
We stopped into a couple of the stores. I bought a book entitled The Dark-Thirty: Southern Tales of the Supernatural to add to the Inn’s book collection. I also bought a pillow with the saying, “I smile because you are my sister, I laugh because there is nothing you can do about it” — the perfect choice for my baby sister in Michigan. I then found a pink flowered purse for one of my nieces who drives what I thought was a pink Volkswagon, but later remembered it is yellow and she calls it Buttercup! She is a fashionista and I know she will still enjoy that pink purse. Kathy bought a T-shirt for her mom with “Grandma Gone Wild” on the front.
Having fulfilled our contribution to the Savannah economy, we decided to stop and have a cocktail on top of the roof atthe Bohemian Hotel, Rocks on the Roof. Sean was our very attentive server. The place was very busy and we sat at the last available table. There was a spectacular view of Savannah from all four sides of this restaurant/bar. We sat on the northeast side where we could see the lights of downtown, the lit bridge, and the Savannah River. What beautiful views! Again, the service was wonderful.
You gotta love the southern hospitality. It’s everywhere in Savannah. After a couple of lemon, lemonly martinis with no sugar on the rim, we decided to start walking back to the Inn.
On the way home we found Jen’s and Friends, a martini lounge that advertises having 100 martinis and 100 beers. I thought Kathy might like it here, so we stopped. It’s a small place and all of the inside tables and bar stools were filled with various ages, sizes, and colors of people. Kathy walked up to the end of the bar where Chris, one of the bartenders, immediately appeared and asked for our order. She wanted to know if he could name all 100 martinis to which he replied “Yes”, but that we needed to find a seat because it was going to take him a minute to name them all. We laughed and ordered another lemon, lemony martini. We received it in plastic cup. A martini in a plastic cup???? That is never good … normally! After placing our order Chris asked us if we were traveling. Kathy thought he was asking if she was traveling away from home to Savannah. So she responded, “Yes”. What he meant was: were we traveling down the road, as in not staying in the lounge. You are allowed to walk around Savannah with your cocktail in hand, so long as it is in plastic cup, 16-ounces or less in size. Some call it a “traveler” or “to-go cup”.
So we went and sat outside at one of the tables in front of the establishment so we could watch folks passing by. On the way out the door, Kathy noticed the chandelier hanging from the middle of the ceiling was made out of martini glasses. Very impressive! We laughed, stepped out the door and enjoyed our drinks. Shortly thereafter we decided to head back to the Inn and call it a day.
Diane McCray, Innkeeper
Green Palm Inn, Savannah GA USA
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