spring art scene – rockford, il

We went downtown for Spring Art Scene last weekend and had a truly wonderful evening being able to wander around and stretch our winter-weary legs.

First we stopped at J.R. Kortman Gallery where, if you’ve never been, has a ton of fun, unusual items. Then we walked over to Kryptonite Bar, where we enjoyed a cold craft beer while perusing the art. Dear Husband had a Smuttynose Robust Porter and I had a New Belgium Shift Pale Lager…both of which I recommend if you’re a beer lover.

We then wandered through the artful nudes at Irish Rose and from there we headed up to see my friend who’s a bartender at Someplace Else II.  We relaxed over a cold Corona while we caught up and then headed back down E. State St to The Office.

Once a regular at The Office, this night I was there to check out the photography of my friend John, who I hadn’t seen in quite a while. John, aka JD Nelson, had some amazing shots displayed and it was truly great to see him again. Seeing as how I’d also ordered one of his prints last fall, it was also exciting to see my choice hanging  in his show.

We bid adieu and from there we stopped over at Abreo. We’d hoped to have a chance to say hello to Paul and Karen, but they were out catering a wedding that night. We checked on a time for a table and moseyed up to the bar for a cocktail. I ordered a bottle of Harp’s and Dear Husband opted in for a Maker’s 46 Manhattan:

Terrible photo, I know. The drinks were delicious but, unfortunately, our wait at the bar grew longer…and longer…

So we cancelled our wait for a table and walked down the street a bit to check out Kuma’s Asian Bistro for the first time. Very, very glad we finally had an excuse to try this restaurant because it ended up being a wonderful dinner.

We started off with a mixed appetizer of fried won tons, crab rangoon, egg rolls  and steamed edamame, along with a Chang beer for each of us. Their menu is quite extensive but we were starving and had a good idea what each of us wanted. DH had Korean Beef BBQ and I had Spicy Calamari Stir Fry and we both had the sheer audacity to say we’d like a definite kick to our plates. Jamie, our incredibly personable server, tested our heat-tolerance level with a few well-aimed questions and she left to place our order.

The mixed appetizer was delicious – even the crab rangoon, which everyone seems to love no matter where they order it and of which I am typically not a huge fan.

The dinners were the true delight though. Both large servings came with heaping mounds of rice, kimchi and pickled Daikon radish.

I’ll apologize here for not taking any photos but I was admittedly starving and I’m pretty sure my husband was on the verge of passing out by the time we sat down to order.

Anyway, the food was divine! I had just a taste of my husband’s, but the beef was tender and the scoville level was definitely on the upper side of fiery. My dish was only 1 step down in heat but the calamari tubes, sliced into meaty slices, were cooked to perfection.

As hungry as we both were, we still weren’t able to finish the generous portions and were forced to ask for take-home containers. And most delightful of all? Mixed appetizer, 2 dinners and 2 beers came to a grand total of $50.00. We’re already looking forward to our next visit to Kuma’s.

All in all, it was a wonderful evening out. Spring Art Scene was an array of mixed media and the weather blessed us with a warm evening. I finally got to catch up with some old friends and my husband and I had the chance to experience a new downtown restaurant.

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