It has been a while since Laura and I had lunch at Cafe Aion, so I'll try to remember all the important details.
When we walked in, the host greeted us, and we were taken aback by how snappily he was dressed. Laura thought maybe we weren't in Boulder anymore. It was a double visual fashion assault though, because someone leaving the restaurant was wearing some sort of (static) clingy satin/silk dress and fishnets. We were seated in sort of a window seat, which was nice for about 2 minutes until my core temperature rivaled that of the sun's. Fortunately, at that point the shady table next to us opened up, and we scooted over.
I already knew I was going to order the Butternut Squash Soup with wild rice, almonds and Parmesan. I had had a taste at Andrea's house, and it was so good, I wanted more. (Cafe Aion posts some of their recipes on their blog!) Also it had been a long, cold winter and I had been craving a lot of soup. I decided to ignore the fact that it was 70 degrees that day and I was wearing way too many clothes to be sitting in a window. (That doesn't sound right.) Laura got the soup too, and we split the Aion Fried Cauliflower with saffron yogurt, cumin and lemon.
I had also had the cauliflower before and I thought it was delicious. Not as delicious as the chicken wings, but I couldn't convince Laura to order chicken wings because she thinks they are disgusting. (Also - I do not see chicken wings on the Day Menu.) When the cauliflower came out, I immediately started devouring it. Fried=yummy. That's my policy. But Laura said the overall browness of the dish made it seem sort of yucky to her. She said at Cafe Aion, she had more of a "Yum, I'll try this!" attitude than if her husband served her a plate of brown cauliflower. I do have to admit, it isn't pretty, but I thought it was good. Later in the afternoon though, it made me feel sort of stomach-achy.
But on to the soup. It is so so so good. I was going to say that it is also incredibly filling, but maybe the fried cauliflower had something to do with my overall full stomach. Laura was surprised that the soup had chunks of butternut squash, since a lot of squash soups are more of a puree. Good point Laura! It is a soup with a lot of good textures, and flavors, and it came with a lot of soft yummy bread.
We were both happy with our meal, but we also had food envy from staring at some neighboring tables, so we will be back. I will just make sure to dress (fashionably) in layers.
How about the new title? Lunch Ladies, get it? Or should I go back to Ladies Who Lunch?