Quality Time

It was the best weekend ever; my boys came to visit me!!!!!

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The three of us had just the absolute best time.  It helped that we ate and drank such yummy things but mostly it was great to hold Adam’s hand while Webster sat in my lap.

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We really made the most of Charlottesville too, we went to our two favorite restaurants and our two favorite drink spots, walked a ton downtown, ran at Riverside Park, and even went to a polo match with a group of my coworkers.

Highlights (including some random things I ate on Friday) include…

An Apple Month breakfast, Trader Joe’s caramel apple yogurt with cinnamon cereal.

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Brunch at Quality Pie.  We split an egg and cheese biscuit and salmon with scrambled eggs and cream cheese on rye.

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Also a chocolate chip cookie.

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Hail Merry cookie dough bites.

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Beers at Hardywood.  Tropic like it’s Hot sour with dragon fruit, blueberry, passionfruit, and pineapple // Tropication IPA // The Great Return IPA // Raspberry Short Kate milkshake IPA brewed with milk sugar and fresh raspberries.

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Cocktails at Vitae.  S’mores = smoked rum, chocolate bitters, marshmallow simple syrup, orange, and a graham cracker rim.

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Hawaiian take out from Mochiko.  Mochiko fried chicken with cucumber kimchi, slaw, and rice.  Plus a passionfruit shortbread bar.

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A simple salad at home.  Romaine with champagne vinaigrette, celery, cashews, and curried chicken salad.

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Dinner at Little Star = the best meal of the weekend and also maybe the best thing I’ve eaten in 2019.  We ordered all of the things but it was serendipitous that we overordered because now Adam has dinner for tonight after his long drive.

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Heirloom tomatoes with strawberries, house-made ricotta, basil, red wine dressing and chili flakes.

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French fries with tarragon aioli.

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Esquites, sweet corn with spring onions, Kewpie mayo, chili corn hot sauce, cilantro, and green onion.

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Braised lamb with pasilla de Oaxaca romesco, butter braised leeks, and sweet onions.

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Chicken with mojo verde, brown butter, and crispy epazote.

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Local coffee.

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Basque cheesecake.

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I Needed My Coffee

Fun fact – I had an amazing time last weekend!  It was fantastic to see my friends and Traverse City is quite possibly my new favorite place (we walked a ton (by the lake!) and drank cocktails with coffee, Mexican Coke, and locally-made vodka, so how could it not be?!).

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Not so fun fact – I spilled an entire coffee yesterday morning and ruined everything in my purse including my dayplanner/brain and camera.  The only thing that’s really missing from this post is the fun lunch I ate at the farmers’ market with my coworker yesterday, but I’m not sure what my plan will be for this weekend since I hate taking photos on my phone.

Here were the highlights before the flood…

Grady’s Cold Brew really is the best, and I say that even I smelled like it all day at work.

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Berry breakfast.  Cereal and milk with blueberries.

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Yogurt bowl 1 – Fage, blueberries, vanilla peanut butter.

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Yogurt bowl 2 – Trader Joe’s vanilla skyr, red plum, walnut butter.

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I finally ate my first fresh apple of the month, a crunchy Pazazz apple.

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I had the day off on Tuesday and I took myself to breakfast at Quality Pie.  Tortilla with egg, chicken, queso, and salsa verde.

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Graeter’s makes my new favorite s’mores ice cream.  It contains no palm oil and the marshmallows are unbelievably soft.

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Related – sadly I can’t recommend this; the texture was actually great but the only flavor present was coconut.

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I am still obsessed with these seaweed chips.  BBQ is even yummier than the original flavor.

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This is the easiest dinner on earth but it tastes soooo good.  Throw Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi on a baking sheet with some turkey pepperoni, bake at 450 for 20 minutes, top with pizza sauce.

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Super salad – romaine, champagne vinaigrette, maple roasted walnuts and cranberries, chopped celery, vegan “chicken salad.”

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A New York Weekend

I spent a long weekend visiting my boys in New York and had the best time ever!  I walked a ton, caught up with friends, ate all the things, slept with Webster pressed up against my ribs, and got to hold my husband’s hand while we talked about his new gig – perfect!

Highlights included…

A 7 mile walk down through Chelsea and across the bridge into Williamsburg.

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Iced lattes!  Terremoto and Cafe Leon Dore.

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Danish chocolate cinnamon swirl at Ole and Steen.

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Brunch with a former coworker at Penelope.  I love taking people there because they are always blown away by how cute it is.  And my croissant sandwich with scrambled eggs, cheddar, and pesto was delicious.

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Lunch at the new Xi’an Town.  Cold fried hand ripped noodles with veggies plus cucumber salad.

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Dinner with friends at Gertie.  I had the blue plate special – rotisserie chicken, local green beans, and schmaltzy fried potatoes.

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A half pound pink velvet cookie stuffed with cream cheese frosting from City Cakes.

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The best thing we ate all weekend = ice cream from Spoons.  Vanilla soft serve blended with sprinkles and Fruity Pebbles and topped with torched marshmallow!

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Good Birthday And Goodbye

Goodbye – I am going to be signing off of the blog for a bit, until mid-August.  We are going to be doing a lot of traveling with questionable internet service – our motel to New York to St. Thomas to New York then back to Charlottesville – and I don’t want to deal with my camera.  I will be sure to include any and all ice cream consumption on Instagram.

Good birthday – I turned 34 this week!  The unstoppable passage of time was celebrated with fantastic cocktails and sushi at Ten with my cousin and her fiance and even better tapas and margaritas at Little Star on a date with the husband.  Also my brother-in-law was in town this weekend and we had a great time showing him around.

Random highlights from the week…

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Not a lot of “food food” to share this week because of our current living situation but I do have all sorts of:

{excitement in coffee}

A trip to Stand Up Coffee in Orange, the space is super cute and they give you a stick of peppermint gum!

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Chameleon Cold Brew.

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Getting a quad iced latte with my Starbuck’s birthday freebie is my favorite tradition.  Plus glittery nails!

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Quad iced latte from Sugar Shack.  Plus an ube doughnut.

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{excitement in cocktails}

A motel-made hibiscus vodka soda!

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Related – I found the newest hibiscus flavor of La Croix.

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The margarita at Little Star comes with a mezcal chaser.

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[excitement in local cuisine}

I tried a very elevated version of the Southern favorite tomato sandwich, Quality Pie‘s heirloom tomatoes and remoulade on sourdough.  Amazing!

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Also the chef brought us out some blistered tomatoes with sea salt that basically took our breath away.

Local Love

Highlights from this week – my in-laws are in town and we had fun showing them Charlottseville one last time // we had some great dinners out, including a new spot that’s a new favorite // Wissotzky Tea Company – an international, family-owned tea company based in Israel with offices in London and the United States – sent me some of their inventive flavors to try…

Coffee for the week: Trader Joe’s espresso blend with sweetened condensed milk.

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Tea samples; their four newest, spiciest flavors: Ginger and Turmeric Spiced Chai, Pumpkin Spiced Chai, Salted Caramel Chai, Spiced Nana Mint Chai.  I cold-brewed my cups per the company’s instructions – a ratio of 4 cups cold water to 5 tea bags, covered in the fridge for 15-36 hours.

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Salted Caramel Chai with a splash half and half (added post picture).

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Spiced Nana Mint Chai with sugar and fresh lime.  <– fair warning, this flavor was too peppery for Adam’s tastes

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Tropical flavors from the Mexican ice cream place down the street: passionfruit, guava, and mamey!

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Plus I picked up these super interesting gummy candies.  They have milk in them and the texture is extra soft and very unique.

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Roasted green beans and TJ’s turkey corn dogs.  Apparently I love corn dogs, I couldn’t stop raving about how tasty these were!

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Sheet pan hash: potatoes, onion, bell pepper, shredded brussel sprouts, and maple chicken breakfast sausage.

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Smoked Kitchen and Tap: a bbq spot we love in Crozet.  I had smoked turkey, cole slaw, and creamed corn with smoked jalopeno.

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The Local: an amazing spot in Bellmont.  I had the best, most Southern plate – buttermilk-brined fried chicken with pimento cheese mac and cheese, collard greens, and house made hot sauce and a buttermilk-chive drizzle.

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Modern Nosh: a newish, super cute deli (which means I finally have a deli in Charlottesville!).

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I had a half turkey reuben and soup with the best matzoh ball of my life.

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Plus we split latkes that were wonderfully full of garlic.  Yum!

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5 + 5

Five random life updates –

{1} We took some stuff to Goodwill last weekend and now we are living in an empty apartment (minus a blow-up bed and all of my clothing).  Literally the only things in our living room are boxes of seltzer!

{2} Last weekend was the first time in 5 weeks that Adam and I were both home and not traveling.  Phew!

{3} This weekend we’re on the move again – we are heading to Solomon Island Maryland to spend some time with my family, including my youngest cousin who I haven’t seen since Thanksgiving!

{4} We finally saw “Late Night” and loved it.  If it’s still in theaters in your area I recommend going if you haven’t already.

{5} Then we watched “Always Be My Maybe” on Netflix and loooooooved it!  It’s officially our new favorite movie.  Super funny and touching.  Ali Wong is one my favorite comedians and she was fantastic as a leading lady.

Five things I ate and loved the last week – 

{1} Yogurt bowl.  Wegman’s chocolate Greek yogurt with pluots and Nature’s Path coconut chia granola.

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{2} Dehydrated rainbow carrot snacks from Trader Joe’s.

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{3} Cheese tea (aka bubble tea that you sip through foamy layer of milk and cream cheese sprinkled with salt) with strawberry heart jelly.

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{4} Marshmallow!  We shared a cup of carnival cake and marshmallow at Kirt’s Ice Cream.  And I was living my best life with this snack combo – Kilwin’s caramel chocolate marshmallow with iced coffee.

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{5} BBQ.  No Limits Smokehouse is a new-ish spot in Belmont and it’s wonderful.  I had a fried chicken sandwich (<– super juicy!) and collard greens, plus we got smoked mushrooms that were my new favorite savory thing I’ve ever eaten!

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Super Salad

We are 85% moved to NYC and the move went swimmingly!  Plus we had a fantastic time at our friends’ wedding.

Here were the highlights from this week…

These new Trader Joe’s chocolate covered espresso beans are my new favorite thing.  They have the perfect ratio of bean to candy and the chocolate coating isn’t waxy at all.

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Ridiculously good cake from Marie Bette; chocolate with salted caramel frosting.

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This cranberry sour ale was a total winner.

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I got a smoked chicken quesadilla from Asado that was shockingly good.  Plus fries with queso!

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I had an amazing salad bowl from Mezeh.  Mixed greens // veggie kefta // tabouleh // olives // red cabbage slaw // cucumber // caramelized eggplant // roasted corn // baba ganoush // harissa and tzatziki dressings.

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Plus we made wonderful salads at home.  TJ’s cruciferous crunch mix // spicy peanut vinaigrette // sesame honey cashews // hot smoked salmon // hard-boiled eggs.  I made the eggs in the oven because we don’t have any pots and they came out great!

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Finally, we met my cousin and her fiance for dinner at Maya.  I had catfish with sweet potato fries and garlic broccoli.  Plus we shared a cheese plate (with pickled apples!) and peanut butter pie.

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