Ah. The pleasure of having someone else cook for you, and then have it all served up to you with fresh roses on white linens in a candlelit space--proceeded by a salmon-colored cosmo. Hard work has its benefits. Most people who like food have a favorite eatery. We foodies may branch out or do take-out, but ultimately we have a spot where we prefer to dine out. Ours is a restaurant in Vienna, Virginia called Cafe Renaissance.
It's a bit bizarre to find such a treasure positioned at the end of a strip mall, right down the sidewalk from a dry cleaner and a barber, but once you walk through the double doors you're transported to an entirely different dimension. The walls are donned with faux-impressionist paintings, the flowers are fresh, and a sure sign that I'm getting older: it's quiet. The owner is Iranian, our favorite waiter Jordanian, and the chef is from Turkey, but the food is pure French--and some of the best on this side of the Potomac. Bring an appetite, your wallet, and good friends. Even though it isn't cheap, this is a culinary experience that you'll want to share. But make a reservation, especially on weekends. This place is busy. Just like me these days. Sigh.