Sunday, July 15, 2012

Diary of a Traveler on the American Queen--Day 2

Dairy of a Traveler on the American Queen---Day 2

American Queen Steamboat Company
By Janelle Woodyard

Food. Who doesn't love food? The cuisine aboard the American Queen has surpassed my expectations! Chef Regina Charboneau is doing an incredible job! There is always food someplace on this vessel. Hors d' oeuvres, desserts and tea can be found at the Captain's Bar. The Front Porch, opened 24 hours a day, offers fresh popped popcorn, soft serve ice cream, mouth-watering cookies (I loved the peanut butter cookies.), a hot beverage machine (with a choice of espresso, latte, cappuccino, americano, mocha, and hot chocolate), a cold drink machine (with a choice of orange juice cranberry juice, lemonade and fruit punch), and a soda fountain machine featuring Coca-Cola products. All of this is available at no additional charge.

Today's features at the River Grill included a salad with chopped hearts of romaine, concassee of tomato, sweet red pepper, and cucumber with a choice of lemon vinaigrette or green goddess dressing. I also tried the orzo and wild rice salad which had red peppers, and dried cranberries with a sherry vinaigrette dressing...very tasty. Chef Unza outdid himself with the Louisiana style smoked sausage, smoked pork ribs, and smoked strip loin.
 Tonight's menu in the J.M. White dining room, started with melon and parma ham and crawfish beignet. The next course was the sweet potato ginger soup, topped with orange scented creme fraiche. It was DELICIOUS! My salad was an oven roasted tomato with fresh mozzarella laced with reduced balsamic drizzle. YUM! The entrees were lamb chops with tomato mint marmalade, grilled chicken with sun dried tomato cream sauce, vegetable curry with chick peas and pan-seared salmon in pepper-brown sugar glaze (which is what I had). It also came with out-of-this world scalloped potatoes (which, I can promise you, is not your momma's recipe) and steamed asparagus. What an incredible dinner. I never thought that a steamboat would have such a variety of food.

Today, we docked in the quaint town of Maysville, Kentucky, birthplace of Rosemary Clooney.
Our hop on-hop off bus tour stopped at the Floodwall River Murals, The Opera House, The Kentucky Gateway Museum Center, and the Russell Theatre.

On display at Kentucky Gateway Museum Center is Kathleen Savage Browning's miniature collection. Never in my life have I seen such detail and craftsmanship on such a small scale.

Next time I'm in Maysville, I need to take the Underground Railroad Tour, which features the Harriet Beecher Stowe (author of Uncle Tom's Cabin) Slavery to Freedom Museum and National Underground Railroad Museum.

On this rainy afternoon, I visited with Riverlorian Jerry Hay in the Chart Room. I was so impressed with his knowledge of the river and his stories that I purchased his hardcopy book, Beyond the Bridges. I can't wait to read this as we cruise up the Ohio River.

The Lovin Spoonful was our featured guest tonight. What an amazing tribute to true musicianship that after 40 years, this band is still making music. On top of all that, we had the opportunity to tour staterooms from a single, to suites, to adjoining rooms. I'll have to write about that another time.

What a packed day!

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