Little Lovely and I have been spending lots of time outdoors luxuriating in the gorgeous spring weather. Lately we’ve even set out a quilt in the yard for playtime and a picnic.All of this fresh air has also spurred a little wanderlust in me and has made me reminisce about some of my favorite outdoor dining experiences with Jody. They say that travel feeds the soul, and some of our best memories revolve around mealtime. Looking back, it seems that there is also a theme of dining alfresco that made these moments extra special.
Here are top five outdoor meals that we will always remember. 1. Villa breakfasts at Round Hill Resort where we celebrated a relaxing babymoon last spring. We were treated to fresh tropical fruits, pastries and made to order options in the privacy of our villa where we could take our time reading the paper, savoring the amazing view and daydreaming about our Little Lovely. 2. This stunning vista overlooks Florence from the magnificent Villa San Michel in the hilltop town of Fiesole. On our first big European journey together, Jody made plans for an unforgettable birthday dinner at the hotel’s Loggia restaurant where we had an unbelievable meal overlooking the countryside. 3. This selection might seem a bit touristy, but we wanted to check out the newly renovated Tavern on the Green during our last trip to NYC in May 2014. After a lovely dinner under the twinkling lights overlooking Central Park, Jody and I hurried to get our check so that we could make it back to our hotel in time to watch the season finale of Mad Men, our most favorite show of all time. As a side note, we’re pretty obsessed with the show. In fact, earlier that afternoon, I dragged Jody down to Time Square to see the new Don Draper installation at Madame Tussaude’s. As we crossed through the lobby we were completely starstruck to see none other than Jon Hamm walk in the restaurant. All I could bring myself to say was, “that’s Jon Hamm.” He was very gracious and said hello to us before passing by. Of course I’m still kicking myself for not asking for a photo. 4. Some of our best meals were actually unplanned. On our incredible trip to the Amalfi Coast a few years ago, we ferried over to the island of Capri for the day. A morning of exploring, shopping and walking left us pretty starving for lunch. As I often do, I had researched a unique spot that was well-reviewed and that we had to visit. Poor Jody stuck with me as we climbed uphill for about 30 minutes searching for the restaurant. When we finally arrived, we learned that it was closed for the season. Feeling defeated and famished, we made our way back down the hill. We had noticed a very chic hotel along our way, The J.K. Palace, and Jody convinced me to stop in and find out if lunch was a possibility. Although we were wilted and bedraggled the impeccable staff made us feel like royalty, ushering us to a table on the beautiful, cliffside patio. We shared the most perfect Caprese salad and gained enough strength to finish our trek down the island.5. Last and most memorable was a picnic on the banks of the Siene in Ile St. Louis on an unseasonably warm February day in 2007 where Jody proposed. I’m so lucky to share all of these meals and memories with him, and I can’t wait for Little Lovely to join us on new adventures.