September 2006 - Rip's Restaurant
5.46 - 6.5, 6.25, 6, 5, 5, 5, 4 (1 late arrival) 

      It looked a little ‘iffy’ at first, but the weather cleared and warmed sufficiently so that the precursor (cocktail hour at the Karnes) this month could be held outside sans Ken (working late and hoping to catch up with us at dinner). A shrimp dip and homemade salsa (from Debbie’s tomatoes) were washed down with the usual pinot grigio, merlot, beer and T & T’s. Conversation was animated early in the evening as we discussed possible choices for a DP8 vacation next summer as we mulled over the possible house choices available. Before you knew it, it was time to be off and we were rushing off to Rip Van Winkle Country Club in Palenville.
        We arrived just in time to see the sunset, watch some golfers finish off their rounds and just enjoy the mountainous scenery outside the large windows. Not really wanting to start the dinner ritual without Ken, we ordered drinks (a carafe of the house merlot, pinot grigios and a diet coke) and a couple appetizers to hold us over – bacon wrapped scallops and a chicken quesadilla, which I can only assume were quite palatable since they seemed to disappear before our eyes. The conversation revolved around some school talk, since our teacher members “enjoyed” their first week back, while Judy shared what she did in her first real week of retirement.  Looks the whole house might get remodeled in the next year or so if Judy keeps going… (go Judy go!!!)
         When it appeared we really might not see Ken, we ordered our dinner. If memory serves me correctly, we had 3 potato encrusted salmons, 2 bacon wrapped filet mignons, 1 shrimp/scallop concasse over linguine, and 1 special – rib eye and lobster tail ‘surf & turf’. Salads were mixed greens with our usual assorted favorite dressings served with warm Portuguese type dinner rolls. The salmon dinner was declared good, but perhaps not outstanding, Tim and Deb K enjoyed their filets thoroughly (cooked just right for us, 1 med. rare, 1 med.) Chay declared his surf & turf very good. Dinners were served with twice baked potatoes (yum, if you ask me) and a sauté mixture of green and yellow squash. Our big loser of the evening was poor Deb T who, in addition to not feeling well to begin with, got a meal that was less than acceptable, claiming that the shrimp and scallops were both overcooked and perhaps had been sitting around in the kitchen for a while.
        Desserts included a scrumptious chocolate caramel pyramid (quite tasty, although the waitress couldn’t really describe it and, after seeing and tasting it, I could understand why), a lemon mousse declared outstanding by Tim, and chocolate cherry cake.
The Down Side:
         Poor Deb T – feeling bad and bad meal. While we were enjoying a leisurely night out, as always, the service of the salads was longer than we might have liked (did they forget because we asked for bread first before the salads?).
The Up Side
        Yeah!!! Ken finally showed up in time for dessert – well, for him it was dinner (chicken wings, and yes, he said they were quite good!) with wine and coffee simultaneously to help make up for lost time, for the rest of us it was dessert. Was it about then that the “spooning” started? I don’t know when or how it started (blame my unreliable memory again) but it had definitely had something to do with ‘you know what’ – why does it always go there???
        The service was very friendly and efficient (except for the salad thing) and Tom & Deb K will definitely be back after a golf outing to enjoy the view and the food (which is how they found out about this place to begin with).