After my last post about Smith Mountain Lake, I thought I'd write another one where I just discussed the restaurants we visited and the terrific food we ate. From the first time we drove through on our way to the campground I had my eye on a new place called Tuscan Tavern. I don't know why it caught my eye, it was in a strip mall and didn't look fancy or anything, but there was something about the name that called to me. At any rate, it was a couple of days before we actually stopped there, but it was worth the wait. We took the plunge for lunch one day, we were both starved and pasta was exactly what I was in the mood for. It turned out to be quite nice on the inside and was obviously new. Our waitress was an Italian lady of about 50 who was the owner's wife and the owner of all the recipes. I can tell you that her veal parmesian was the bomb! She took very good care of us and when we got to the register to pay we met her husband and found out the full story. I love family owned and operated restaurants like that where they feed you like you are family. They are very sweet people and we will definitely eat there whenever we return to the lake.
There were several Mexican restaurants in the area but the one that caught my attention was a brand new, huge place called El Torrito. We went there for dinner the evening after we had been on the water all day. We were hot and tired and sunburned and Mexican food seemed to just fit the bill. We drove the rig up into the parking lot and got ourselves dressed for dinner. On our way in the door Joseph noticed that they had free wifi! Since wifi had been hard to find this was good news, but we decided to worry about the computers later. We went on in and ordered our new favorite beer Bud Light Lime. We had bought one of the tall boys at the grocery store the night before and decided it was our perfect summer beer. Along with the beers came chips and salsa and our other favorite treat at Mexican restaurants...the white sauce! Does anyone know what this stuff is, other than yummy??? We love it, we discovered it at our local Mexican place and were thrilled to see it was available elsewhere! We each ordered chimichangas which have become my go-to choice these days thanks to my friend Wren. I don't know if it was the sunburn or the day on the water or what, but that meal was DELISH! The place was hopping so I'm glad to see they are doing a good business and will hopefully be around for a good long time.
When we were done eating we decided to see if the wifi signal reached all the way out to the far side of the parking lot where we had parked the rig. We were in luck! We were able to sit out in the rig with our puppy and relax in our own environment. We got some funny looks from patrons going in, I guess they thought we were weird for sitting there in a parking lot with our generator and lights on, playing on our computers. We didn't care, we were having fun! We love being at home where ever we are!
On our last morning at the lake we stopped into another place we had passed every single day and I'm so glad we finally did. It is called the Blue Bird Bakery and Grill and it is adorable. It is funny what you notice when you are on the road with no tv or internet for a few days. The first thing we look for now is free wifi, but we also hadn't seen tv in days and this place had big screens all along the walls and behind the bar. All the tvs were tuned to ESPN or CNN and we were getting our first news in days. The food was great and the waitress was very friendly and invited us to walk over into the bakery before we paid our bill...which of course meant we added some baked goods to our tab! Smart girl! We got some funny looks from other patrons for sitting there with our laptops. I'm sure they were shaking their heads at the fact that "some people" can't step away from the computer for five minutes...we have decided that before we hit the road on a long journey we are gonna have to install our own internet because we really do feel cut off when we can't get online.