Friday, June 5, 2009
El Tovar at the Grand Canyon
After our epic 18-mile hike down South Kaibab to Phantom Ranch and then back up Bright Angel trail (oy), we hobbled on over for a well-deserved feeding at century-old El Tovar Restaurant that eve.
Though I remain mystified by the bizarre ritual of stuffing animal heads and mounting them up on the walls—a good 7 or 8 of them were cluttering El Tovar's lounge, I never say no to a tasty set of venison rib chops (which my sister ordered) or a fat New York strip crowned with a generous handful of buttermilk-cornmeal onion rings (my dad's pick).
Lucky for me, they shared some of their spoils, because my dinner—a gnocchi primavera—was sadly forgettable. I know, I know. What was I thinking bypassing a meaty main in favor of pasta and veg? The beady eyes of the massive moosehead looking down at me in the lounge should have clued me in to the fact that protein is El Tovar's specialty. Oh well, chalk it up to one part exhaustion and another part hunger, plus a large dose of altitude hangover thrown in.