Saturday, March 2, 2013

Brunch 02.24.2013 - Brunch and Ballroom

Old Vine Café & Arthur Murray Paris Themed Showcase

Good Evening Kittens!

After a long, treacherous work week, I am finally able to take the time to recap my antics from last Sunday.  And when I say 'antics', I mean very civilized and ladylike activities.  (Usually when someone uses the term 'ladylike' it's quite a stretch, but in this case, it's on point.)  I'm also pushing this post out on a Friday night because A. I'm pooped from this week and am getting old (no really, my birthday is on Wednesday).  B. I'm cleaning the apartment in preparation for my family to visit tomorrow and keep looking for distractions.  C. I have to relay the details of my last Brunch before I have another (I believe that is in the Brunch Bylaws).

My friend Brianne joined my usual Brunch Partner in Crime, Stephanie, and me last Sunday.  As another friend was performing in a Paris-themed ballroom dancing showcase in Costa Mesa, I had been searching high and low for a crepe place near there and the only places I found did not serve alcohol.  FRENCH FAIL.  First off, how can one have Brunch without an accompanying cocktail?  Second, how can any self-respecting crepe-serving establishment not at least serve bubbly?  It's not civilized and it's definitely not French.  So, I had to scrap the crepe idea and we ended up at Old Vine Café in Costa Mesa.

'Please wait (and wait and wait) to be seated'
Stephanie and I had Brunch here before and the food was incredible.  Unfortunately, everyone in Orange County is also aware of this fact, so the wait had been insane.  I attributed that to the fact that we went around noon last time, so I thought we would be avoiding that problem by having a - GASP - early Brunch.  Quelle Horreur!  Old Vine Café opens at 9:00, so I thought 10:00 would be fine.  I was wrong.  Very wrong.

Because the food is so good, I wouldn't be surprised if people were lined up at 8:00.  Absolutely ridiculous!  We arrived at 10:00 and were not seated until 10:50.  Seeing as how I hadn't had coffee prior to heading out, I lasted until exactly 10:40 and then I lost my shit.  I was quite proud of myself for lasting that long.  (I've been starting each morning with a mug of hot water and the juice of a lemon as part of eating clean.  The list of health benefits of starting your day in such a fashion is long, and I find that I can have that as I would coffee while getting ready in the morning and during the week am able to survive with just one cup of coffee once I get to work.  The weekends, however, are a different story and since I'd been up since 7, I learned that 3 1/2 hours is my absolute limit!)  With how long this all took, we became VERY familiar with their odd little seats for waiting.

PS - they have a patio, so while you can smell the food and the coffee, you also get to watch others enjoying their Brunch.  I think it's frighteningly bad form.  Also, how enjoyable can your dining experience be while people are coveting your food and/or giving you the evil eye in an effort to hurry you along??

Once we were seated, thankfully inside as it was also incredibly windy and cold outside, we finally got the experience we came for.

Unfortunately, no, not six bottles of wine...but what a great deal!  No, the next best thing, and an absolute necessity for me:

Coffee, a mimosa, and two fabulous sock-bunned Ladies!  Please excuse the poor photo quality...the lighting here was absolutely grotesque.  What was NOT grotesque was the company and the food.  Not surprising.

Stephanie ordered the Biscuits & Gravy, which would have been sufficient if one wanted to feed a small county.  Brianne and I both ordered the Southern Brunch sans the scrapple - two eggs, a fried green tomato, and a biscuit with their homemade pistachio butter (heaven).  I added a side of some absolutely incredible Creamy Cheese Grits.  DO NOT pass these up if you visit.  You're welcome.

After Brunch, Brianne and I headed to the Westin South Coast Plaza for the aforementioned ballroom dancing showcase that our friend Janice was performing in.  Upon entering the Westin, there were racks of brightly colored, bedazzeled, befeathered (I just made up a new word) competition dresses for sale.

While this one was not brightly colored, I had to exert some serious self control to pass up purchasing it.  I loved it!  It was not only beautiful, but incredibly versatile.  Wouldn't you agree?

Here is Janice, the Super Star!  This was the first time I'd seen her dance in this kind of setting and while I knew she was good, I had no idea just HOW good she was.

This ribbon was one of the two that she won that day.  Doesn't she look sparkly and fringey and lovely?

Unfortunately, some of the other costumes were not nearly as classy.

Not that her other outfits weren't fabulous, but this was my favorite.  Very Fosse!  Jazz Hands!!

And here was our first taste of what Janice could do.  Enjoy!

And then this magic happened.  She's absolutely amazing - and her 'naked dress' ain't half bad either...

I wanted to post this video because it will introduce you to the guy we lovingly started referring to as 'Mr. Congeniality'.  I doubt you'll have any problem figuring out who I mean.  His happiness was infectious and it made him difficult to turn away from.

And I'd like to end on this note Kittens - ballroom dancing may not be for everyone, but it most certainly HAS something for everyone.  Even Eskimos.


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