Tuesday, October 12, 2011
Almost home. Nothing left except Texas and New Mexico. Oh boy. We plan to make it to Roswell, NM tonight. That is about halfway and is pretty much the only town of any decent size between that is a day’s drive.
Breakfast at La Quinta and then off we go. We started out on the Interstate (20) for a couple of hours and then jumped off to take a few smaller roads across West Texas. Long, lonely roads with 70mph limits and very little traffic. Also very little to look at.
Roswell is weird. I don’t know the complete history, but some folks think there was an alien spaceship crash there some time ago and the town is left with remnants of the alien takeover. Downtown is a collection of kitchy “alien” shops, restaurants etc. There is even a UFO museum.
The bottom really dropped out of our accommodation level and we pulled into our Super 8 complete with a model alien spaceship out front. We took advantage of our early hour to catch up on this blog (we are sorely behind).
I also used Yelp to try and find some decent eats. We settled on Billy Ray’s Bar and Grill for dinner due to the many positive reviews. A lot of the reviews said to ignore the outward AND inward appearance and just go in! Most reviews remarked about the “Relleno Stuffed Ribeye.” I am sufficiently intrigued.
We found Billy Ray’s with no trouble and I was pleasanty surprised at the outward and inward appearance. In fact, we got good vibes when we entered. Our server was super friendly and told us all about the Relleno Ribeye saying it was “awesome.” Oh, it was also Prime Rib night.
I definitely wanted to try the Ribeye, but Rich thought it would be too greasy. I decided to go ahead and order it knowing that I would probably only eat a third of it. Rich ordered Prime Rib. I think this may be one of the only times we did not share a supper.
OMG. The ribeye was killer. The chef takes a boneless ribeye (without very much fat on it) and makes a pocket in it. He then slides in a New Mexican green chile that has cheese inside it. The steak is seasoned perfectly on the outside and grilled to perfection. He serves it with both red and green chile sauce (green is fantastic). Great idea and very delicious. I proclaimed this dish to actually be one of the best things I have eaten on this trip. (you will have to check our “Superlatives” post that we will write after we get home to find out our collection of the “BEST” things).
Rich’s Prime Rib was also fantastic. He says it was one of the best he has had. We both ate EVERYTHING on our plate!! The chef – Todd – came out to check on us. When he realized we were “foodies” he sent out a couple of bites of this cheesecake that he said had won awards.
We finished our steaks and the chef came out again and started chatting with us. He grew up in Paradise Valley, AZ and had trained at the Biltmore. He had worked there and also at the WigWam Resort in Arizona. He has been in Roswell for 14 years! He told us that he always gets excited when someone comes into Billy Ray’s who really appreciates the food.
We ended up ordering the cheesecake. When it arrived, the server told us that she had never before seen this presentation. He had placed the cheesecake on a bed of apple/cinnamon/sugar and then wrapped it in pastry dough and quickly deep fried it. WOW.
What a great finish to our last night on the road. I came in for dinner feeling a bit melancholy because our trip was ending. I left wth a smile on my face.