Friday, October 31, 2008

Breakfast with The Leftover Queen at The Lone Wolf

Breakfast with a queen and a wolf - sounds like a fairy tale, doesn't it? Well, let me spin you that tale...

Once upon a time (6 months ago) in a faraway land (Jamaica), a new blushing bride (me) and her handsome prince (Mr. valleywriter) went to a gathering for all of the newly married members of the kingdom (a Honeymooners Cocktail Hour at the resort we were staying at). There we met interesting people from other faraway lands (Florida, Texas, New York), many of whom had never heard of our little hamlet known as the Pioneer Valley.

But there was one couple who knew exactly where we were from because they had lived here themselves! The beautiful Leftover Queen and her handsome Italian prince granted us an audience to reminisce about our homeland. Later in our journey, we even had the honor of dining with The Leftover Queen & her prince.

OK - enough fairy tale talk. Here's the rest of the story in plain ol' valleywriter-speak:

We ended up chatting over breakfast one day and learned that we had a lot more in common than just having lived in the same area. Amongst other things, we discovered we were both writers. The Queen was a successful freelancer (something I think many writers aspire to) and she piqued my interest about blogging as a potentially viable method of expanding my professional development. We thought we'd run into them again before we left so we didn't exchange contact info, but it just didn't work out. So we went home thinking we'd met a great couple who we'd sadly never see again.

Fast forward a few months. We'd moved and I was finally feeling settled into the new house, so I decided to give blogging a try. After about a month of blogging with very few readers to show for it, I started investigating ways to get my blog out there. I found that I wound up having a lot of food-related content on my blog (what can I say - I love eating!!) and eventually I stumbled upon Foodbuzz, a community of food-related blogs, posts & recipes. When I went to join, whose photo did I see on the main login page? None other than that of The Leftover Queen herself!

A quick note to say hello led to me joining The Leftover Queen's Foodie Blog Roll and then making plans to meet up with The Leftover Queen & her husband for breakfast in Amherst during their annual trip to the Valley. I dare say it's one of the best stories I have about a burgeoning friendship.

For breakfast, we decided to give The Lone Wolf a try, as The Leftover Queen had fond memories of their breakfasts, though Mr. valleywriter & I had never been. I was impressed with the sheer number of selections at the The Lone Wolf. From the traditional egg, pancake, bacon breakfasts to the more unique vegan Egg's Benedict - there is truly something for every palate and dietary need.

I went with a the daily special frittata with spinach, sun dried tomatoes and feta, which came with home fries and toast.

Mr. valleywriter had the huevos rancheros.

Both dishes were very fresh and tasty. The portions were about the right size, though I was surprised to only get 1 slice of bread (cut in half to make "2 pieces of toast") with my breakfast. I really shouldn't complain though because the ample serving of potatoes more than made up for it. Also, I enjoyed an incredible cup of warm apple cider with my breakfast - highly recommended.

I have to admit that while breakfast was good, it was the company that I enjoyed most. Chatting with fellow foodies and otherwise incredibly nice, thoughtful and friendly people was what made the day for me. It's funny, I've really only chatted with them for probably a total of 3-4 hours, but I feel like they're old friends I've always known.

As our breakfast date came to a close, we got onto the topic of fellow food bloggers. We agreed that, in our experiences, this diverse section of the population seems to have the fortunate ability to work together and support each other in caring ways, without the negativity that so often accompanies online interactions. In my opinion, we have pioneering bloggers like The Leftover Queen to thank for forming the basis of this incredible community. So many thanks to The Leftover Queen & all of the many food bloggers who have accepted me into your community with open arms. Here's to more great tales of burgeoning friendships and excellent meals!

(The Leftover Queen on the left, ValleyWriter on the right)


JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

You are the sweetest! :)
What a nice surprise to see this here - makes me realize I so need to get my act together!!!!

Roberto and I really enjoyed our breakfast with you and mr.valleywriter and agree that it feels like we are all old friends!

I will need to get my post up soon! Here's to many more great chats and breakfasts together! :)

Jessie said...

Oh what an awesome post! I've been a Boston girl for years, but I lived in Western Mass. briefly. Still miss it, especially this time of year! Happy to find your blog (thru FoodBuzz). I'll definitely be a return reader. :D

a.k.a. The Hungry Mouse

pixen said...

Glad to see both you pict! I wished I can meet all foodies and live in same area... :-D Please say 'hello' to Leftover Queen & her Prince Charming! Thanks!

Aggie said...

What a great story! It's so cool how you guys met on your honeymoon and have so much in common! Love your blog, just came across it on the Food Buzz newsletter!!