So long and thanks for the fondue

Melissa Treolo

A lot of boys have come and gone in my life and, while I certainly wasn’t sorry to see many of their departures, I’ve found myself feeling thankful that I got to know some of them. Not because of the boys themselves, but because of the yummy places they’ve introduced me to. I’ve come to realize that I must have been living under a rock, and without some rather uninteresting prospects to pull me out from under that rock, I might still be there today. So to those of you who have graced my life with disappointment and a whole lotta wasted time, my appetite thanks you.

To a certain person in Kansas City who is hopefully residing in a nice rehab center by now: Finding The Melting Pot has made all the drunken drama worth it.

Fruit dipped in chocolate, bread dipped in cheese, how can you not love a meal such as this? The Melting Pot in Kansas City is a fondue restaurant whose tantalizing wares (chocolate, cheese, raviolis that you cook yourself) are almost painfully satisfying. So satisfying, in fact, that it’s easy for me to forget the memory attached to it of a bad date with a severe alcohol problem. And I can forgive anything if I’m taken to a place where cocktails are as artfully presented as they are enjoyable to drink. One drink that comes to mind was a chocolate martini with a yin yang symbol on the top of it in chocolate shavings. Mmmm. A desert in a martini glass. Although, perhaps on this particular excursion, yin yang desert martinis weren’t such a great idea. I did, after all, end up having to drive us both home. Again. But my irritation was short-lived. I had just had the mouth-watering experience of a lifetime, and I don’t think my taste buds have been the same since.

To the boy who first showed me the delights of Chipotle Mexican Grille: My desire for anything big, messy and tortilla wrapped has led me back again and again.

Chipotle is the mainstay of all hangovers. Or it will be once you’ve purchased the delicious, foil-wrapped monstrosities the place is known for after a heavy night of drinking. But even if you haven’t spent the previous evening getting loaded at a local bar of your choice, one spicy, rice and meat-filled burrito will be worth the 25 minute drive to Lawrence. These are the kind of burritos that stop dinner conversations because they’re huge, most people are just too busy trying to eat the thing, and because they’re just so damn good. And I actually have to stop talking about them right now because I’m beginning to get those cravings and I don’t have time to make the drive.

Only two words are needed to describe the compensation I got out of a recent, lackluster fling: “The Pig.”

The Bourgeois Pig in Lawrence doesn’t serve any food, but it feeds one’s appetite in so many other ways. You want art? “The Pig” is a small art gallery whose walls are covered with photographs and paintings by various local artists. How about something to drink while you’re looking? One side of the small bar is reserved for ordering drinks and coffee, and “The Pig” can refresh you with anything from an espresso to a ruby red cosmopolitan. The atmosphere is pleasant, if a bit crowded at times, and the place is perfect for meeting friends or going on a casual date. Hopefully not a date with someone you have nothing in common with, though. Otherwise you might be stuck with many awkward moments, that can’t be covered up by loud music or the arrival of food at the table, while your date asks you over and over again, “How’s your drink?”