Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Cirque du Soleil/Lyon Hall

We try to catch Cirque du Soleil every time they are in town. Ann booked our tickets to Kurios probably six months ago and we had been looking forward to seeing the show for a long time. After a whole lot of hassle trying to find our designated parking in Tyson's Corner, we finally made it to the show in time to have a glass of wine before things got kicked off.

Kurios Was a Good Show

Prosecco at Intermission
I really enjoyed this show. It was a lot better than Michael Jackson: One which we walked out of at intermission and Totem which was too small. I don't think it compares to Ovo in terms of large acrobatic feats, but it was well staged and over far too soon. Both the Victorian-Steampunk mashup costumes and haunting music from vocalist Eirini Tornesaki were fantastic. Though it was really too dark inside to photograph anything, I was able to get one grainy photo while the house lights were still up.

A Steampunk Extravaganza
After the show, we zipped down the tollroad from Tysons to Ballston to try SER Restaurant which features mainly small plates and tapas. I had been looking really forward to trying their real Spanish food for some time, but it became apparent as soon as we walked in that we wouldn't be staying: their AC was broken and it was about 85 degrees inside, just slightly cooler than outside. We regrouped at the bar with a glass of Verdejo for me and for Ann a cocktail called the Stigma: Cava, ginger honey, and saffron bitters. This was a really great cocktail. We decided to move to nearby Lyon Hall and called Drew and Bill, who were on their way to meet us at SER.

Stigma: Cava, Ginger Honey, Saffron Bitters
They beat us to Lyon Hall by about 10 minutes as we finished our cocktails and liberated our car from the parking garage whose attendant was not to be found when we got to the exit. They had just come in from the new house, Avon Hall, that they purchased in Washington, VA. We got caught up over cocktails before moving on to dinner. I had a double IPA from Evolution Brewing and Ann had a shandy.

Holding Down the Table for Us

Evolution Double IPA

Mini Hot Dogs with Kraut and Mustard
Our server brought us a plate of mini hot dogs on the house. They worked really well with my beer, but we soon moved on to a bottle of Fitou from the Mediterranean Coast of France, a Carignan-based blend with Grenache and Syrah. I've had a bit of Fitou in my life and it's mostly been pretty tannic and brawny. This, by contrast, was softer and much more approachable.

Tuna Tartare
For dinner, among the four of us, we had a good sample of the menu. Drew had steak tartare and a massive pork schnitzel. Bill had a tuna tartare and a hanger steak. Ann and I had a tuna tartare, a sausage plate, and a cheese plate. After our appetizers, it was getting too dark inside to photograph so no more food pics. We really enjoyed our visit with Drew and Bill but despite the excellent company, we found the food wasn't at the level of our last visit in 2012. Back then, the food was exceptional, especially the sausages. The new chef's food is good but not what we had hoped for, better than average, but not exceptional. Still, I like the restaurant very much.

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