The next stop on our America tour was Virginia, where we visited a friend who lives on Smith Mountain Lake. We stopped en route briefly to check out Charlottesville and the beautiful UVA campus. It was a fantastic few days at the lake because there aren’t any tourist-type sights or activities there, so we felt no pressure to do anything other than hang out, swim, ride around in the boat, eat, and drink.
Oh, and we attempted to do some fishing too. Our host is an avid fisherman and he taught me and J how to cast a line (J had fished before, but I hadn’t). I never caught anything, but J’s attempts paid off when he landed a cute little bass. He threw it back, but not before getting some pictures, of course.
Food-wise those days weren’t the most interesting or glamorous. I probably ate more meat than I ever do in a 3-day period because I was surrounded by meat-eating males: half a pulled pork sandwich, a chicken sandwich, a hot dog, chicken fingers, nachos with ground beef. I could survive for a few days, but I don’t understand how people eat like that on a regular basis. Since I had a hunch early on that I might be the only fruit-eater present, when J and our host went grocery shopping I put in an order for some fruit. They came back with a huge Red Delicious apple that it took me two days to get through and these:
I’d never tried baby bananas before! The flesh of the banana is very soft, like an over-ripe banana, but the flavor is mild and not very sweet. I ate two or three at a time. To balance out the healthy stuff, J also picked up two packs of Reese’s peanut butter cups for me– we were on vacation, after all ;-).
On our last evening at the lake we rode around and visited a few of our host’s favorite hangouts. One of these was a place called Moosie’s, famous for its loaded nachos. There were six of us so we ordered the “medium” size, which was supposed to feed about six.
It was a pizza pan filled with tortilla chips, ground beef, cheese, lettuce, sour cream, salsa and jalapenos. J and I were the only ones brave enough to include a bit of jalapeno in each bite– personally, I love that kind of heat! The nachos were quite good, with ample and evenly distributed toppings so that there were some in each bite. We had to eat them with a knife and fork. Does anybody else like the last nachos on the plate, that have gotten soft from soaking up the salsa and other toppings? Because I totally do.
Later in the evening we had even more tortilla chips when we went to a Mexican restaurant called simply “the Mexican” by our friend (it’s actually Mexico Viejo in Crazy Horse Marina). It was Tuesday, and Tuesday meant half-priced margaritas, yay!
Margaritas came in regular and jumbo sizes. I went for the regular and I’m glad I did because you could really taste the tequila in that sucker! We weren’t hungry for dinner because of the aforementioned nachos, but when one of the friendly staff offered us chips and salsa, we couldn’t refuse.
The chips came out fresh and warm, along with fresh salsa and their signature white sauce, which was warm and really unique. It wasn’t a cheese sauce– the base must have been something else, but it was creamy and mildly spiced. At any rate, it was good. Slightly later we were offered guacamole and cheese sauce as well, which we also gladly accepted– the guacamole wasn’t the most flavorful but it had awesome chunks of avocado, and the cheese sauce was just addictive. I ate so many tortilla chips that night, but it was totally worth it. We also had a few shots of the dark stuff, which was some kind of tequila coffee liqueur. I can’t remember the exact name right now, but it was sweet and good for sipping.
So there you have the food highlights from Virginia! Stick around for the next state on our tour.