The picture accompanying this post is of my absolute favorite breakfast in the whole wide world. Soft boiled eggs with butter, a dash of salt, and a dash of Tabasco, along with a piece of toast with lingonberry jam (compliments of T&C), and a juice glass of grapefruit juice. This is why there's no place like home, for anything, including eating.
Even so, on the Great Train Trip West, our train meals were pretty darn good, the ultimate meals on wheels! Our porter, Jamil, on the Capitol Express going out, took our dinner reservation and communicated the evening's choices. There were several entrees from which to choose: roast chicken, steak, vegetarian pasta dish, lamb shank, and crab cakes. If you want to see the actual menu, here is the link: http://www.amtrak.com/ccurl/81/708/Capitol-Limited-Dining-Menu,0.pdf JS immediately knew he was going to order the roast leg of lamb and I immediately knew I was going to order the crab cakes....all the other choices quickly faded into oblivion! I now realize I didn't think to take pictures of the food, and am truly regretful for that miss. When our reservation of 7:00 p.m. was announced, we walked to the dining car to be seated, and were placed at a table with a gentleman named Mike. Another gentleman, AJ, joined us shortly after, and our drink orders were taken. A lovely salad and bread were served, a nice repast of which to partake while we were getting to know our fellow table guests. The entrees arrived with a vegetable and baked potato (or rice, or mashed potatoes). The lamb was delicious, so I am told, and the crab cakes were very good as well. Dinner was followed by various dessert choices and hot beverages. JS and I each chose to order the berry cheesecake, the perfect ending to the meal. It was really nice to be seated at a table, to eat our food with stainless flatware and from glass dishes, and to have cloth napkins to dab the corners of our drooling mouths : )
Breakfast the next morning was just as good. Scrambled eggs, bacon, grits or whole grain bisquit, juice, and coffee. Our table mate that morning was Leon, who was on his way to Indiana, and again, we had an interesting conversation and received glimpses into each others' lives. We knew we would probably never see our fellow meal guests ever again, but then, who knows....it's a small world, and the possibilities are infinite!
We had some time in Chicago after arriving so walked around Union Station, as there was a bazaar in progress. About half an hour later who did we see on his way to the street exit but Leon!!! See....you never know!
There is also a cafe on the train, and a bar, so on our return trip we enjoyed a cocktail before dinner. Our porter on the return trip, Lou, offered to bring dinner to our cabin or make a reservation for us. We chose the reservation and made it for 8 p.m. since the return train was pulling out a bit later. JS liked the lamb so much the first time he ordered it again! I ordered the roast chicken, and was just as pleased with it as I was with the crab cakes. We were pretty stuffed so shared a raspberry sorbet for dessert this time. Our table mate for our second dinner was Helen.
Return breakfast (or should I say "second breakfast"?!!!) was the same as the trip out, and just as welcome and delicious. Our table mate that morning was Ben from Florida, who wasn't sure if he liked the cold or not, but was beginning to decide that if he had his druthers, he'd probably choose Florida!
We both are somewhat introverted, but we so enjoyed the opportunity to meet other travelers at mealtimes and to get to know their stories. What a great experience, we wish it for everyone. That's why we are joining http://www.narprail.org/ we think more trains and more routes are good ideas!