A Stir The Pots Post

Road trip through the Andes

by | Jan 4, 2007 | Road trip

The first evening I tried to adjust to smells and sounds and surroundings, as well crack into conversation with my Spanish, not your best Castillian mind you, but I can drive at the wheel good enough to make some people look twice when I tell them I’m from some other province in the highlands near Quito or something, it’s a good laugh! So we go to a neighborhood where there are a few restaurant, I pray for something better than what I have come to know from previous ventures to greasy spoons to buffet halls! So my brother-inlaw takes us to a part of town called Urdesa (hmmm is that like Odessa?), the restaurant is supposedly owned by some Argentinians, it’s called Blu, the at the entrance we are accosted by street urchins who identify my light skin as perhaps some wealthy Gringo and I tell them "can you help a fellow American out on his luck?" My brother inlaw  shoo’s them off and we knock on a door, the windows are tinted(I think to avoid having peering eyes of these unortunate souls looking at us while we devour the vittels.The interior is strangely decorated with some awful art and it all seems put together by someone who hasn’t a clue, or I don’t really get it? The wine is expensive, 20 and up, no real deals there, the menu is in Spanish and I find some interesting ideas that seem somewhat similar to magazines, but I try not to be the judgemental chef, instead it’s, I don’t care what it is give it to me! The wine is decent Argentinian Malbec, Altas  Hormigas, and I order a Corvina tiradito, should of snapped a picture but I devoured it and shared  some with the brother-inlaws (customary to let everyone try!) Next I had Tuna with some grilled vegetables and some sort of psuedo asian sweet sauce, I scared the waiter when I said I wanted it rare! Dessert was ok, lemon tart with a sorbet and a gooey carmel tuile and a cookie, somehow this fusion of Euro latin hasn’t quite clicked here, I heard Peru has a higher gastronomic  school and culture! Everyone tells me to give the Chef my card and he comes out, nice local guy, kind of bewildered, so they initiate that I would interview him later in the trip and he gives me his card.
So as to break up the boredom of a strangely humid enviornment in the heart of Guayaquil ,Cimg0012
especially at Christmas when I usually will bake numerous reminders of childhood goodies like Stollen and schlep a christmas tree a good ten or more blocks if a cab won’t pick me up; no this year I am lounging in a pool at the hotel we are staying, enjoying a dip which will I hope relieve a serious back ache from too many consecutive parties where I loaded ovens with large fowl and sides of meat for the enjoyment of my customers! I was even so lucky to  get a fairly decent massage, my second this year! As is the case in Ecuador and I suppose in other countries there are still buffet service in most restaurant, eegad! Nothing like congealed sauce and wilting meat, so I stay with the cold goodies like cevicheCimg0289 though I admit mine is better, but I would rather that than some dried pork or something, I have been stricken with amoebas  here before.
So after spending two day’s in the city, doing mundane back in forth with the wifes family, christmas with yet another buffet and lousy wine and finally realizing we couldn’t find any transportation because everyone is traveling to and fro, it’s good to plan ahead "sports fans"! Our plan comes together to visit Loja via Cuenca, then stop for a couple day’s in my wifes birth place, Zaruma in the Southern Andes, how we get there though is another story, an eight hour  driving adventure through high mountain passes strewn with rocks and mud, a sudden stomach spasm on a high pass ,Cuy Cimg0176
and llamas!….on the road continues……..


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Find More

Follow Us

Feel free to follow us on social media for the latest news and more inspiration.

Related Content