Greetings from the Sheraton in Des Moines (French for "beats Iowa City")! Hope the evening finds you well. If you're like 75% of my readers, you're probably thinking, "I'm doing a lot better than you because I'm not in Iowa!" Honestly, I'm really digging Des Moines. Well, other than the fact that there's no Food Network in this room, which is why I'm blogging rather than trying to force conversation with Noah (10 years together. Four hours in the car. Don't judge). Not only is it a sweet little town with a metric crap-ton of bars, but it's also home to a fantastic foodie restaurant called Alba (French for "stretchy pants encouraged").
Our friends Shannon (also known as "Cute Shannon" to some) and Ellie picked out this place to take us specifically so I'd have a great new spot to write about. To say they chose wisely would be a staggering understatement. I can't remember the last time I ate that well, and that's not entirely due to meth induced memory loss. The shining star for all of us was the plate of morels we shared as an appetizer. Apparently they're kind of a big deal. Even bigger than Ron Burgundy (but not Baxter. That dog went through some real shit). Shannon told us a story about being a young boy in North Pitlicker (may not be a real city) Iowa, how they would go out and pick morels for funsies, because there was no mall in which to loiter aimlessly and shoplift. Now, that sounds like a lot of work to me, for I am astonishingly lazy, but even my fat ass might put forth that kind of effort for another plate of those.
After some hemming and hawing about the beef cheeks (are they really cheeks? Do they have dimples?) (I had no interest, prawns FTW), we placed our orders, enjoyed cocktails and conversation, and then proceeded to stuff ourselves silly. My gnocchi was so rich I can still hardly move for I am stupid full. So when Ellie told the waitress it was my birthday and hence I should receive a piece of chocolate lava cake, I almost punched her (I waited until she started singing Happy Birthday. Broke the poor girl's nose) (OMG totes joking). It was velvety exquisiteness. I would have licked the plate clean but I had already done that with the mushrooms so I didn't want to make a total ass of myself.
Next stop is Kansas City. We might be crazy and stop in both Missouri and Kansas! Stay tuned!