Taking Back My Twenties

Brunch

Weekend of Friends

Posted on Jul 30, 2014 | 4 comments

Two of our good friends were in town visiting family this weekend, so we spent Saturday night on the town! Matt and I made a pizza and just took it easy on Friday night in preparation. I haven’t felt that rested on a Saturday morning in a long time!

When our friends Lauren and Evan arrived, we immediately took them to our favorite taco joint, Urban Taco! I ordered my usual tacos and we also got the avocado ceviche, which is just the best! Although we had been hoping to do something outside, the temp hit 102, so we decided bowling inside was a better choice. I’m not great at bowling, but I always enjoy trying.

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Our first stop for the night was Savor for cocktails. We rode the trolley to Klyde Warren Park and enjoyed views of downtown.

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Lauren and I both got a drink made with tequila and champagne and it was potent!

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For dinner, we made our way to Barter. We sampled a few different wines and decided on this lovely zin from Sonoma.

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I apologize for the quality of my pictures! We shared the corn fried catfish,

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the spicy carrot ‘home fries’ with goat cheese,

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and the deviled eggs (which was really just the filling) with fried artichoke,

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Y’all know I always split dinners with Matt, but since Lauren and Evan love food as much as we do, we switched partners for a change. The girls shared this black bass and the men shared a giant lamb shoulder.

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Plus crispy brussels, which were probably my favorite item of the night!

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We ended the evening with shenanigans and a nightcap at the famous Katy Trail Ice House.

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But the real grand finale of the weekend was the amazing brunch we had at Sundown on Granada, which is definitely my favorite brunch spot as of late. I got the same thing Matt had last time – the Shiner brisket eggs benedict with sweet potatoes.

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I’m balancing out the indulgent eats with lots of healthy food because we’re heading to a wedding this weekend. I wrapped up another couple of shifts at Equinox and next week will be my last week there. The end of summer is soo soon!

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The Blind Butcher and Betty Who

Posted on Mar 31, 2014 | 2 comments

This weekend was such a good one, filled with food and other festivities! Friday, Matt and I tried a new neighborhood eatery called The Blind Butcher. The atmosphere (upscale pub/speakeasy), service, and food were fantastic. And we were quite pleased when the bill came to $40!

A mint julep and the soon-to-be famous pretzel bread with mustard to start:

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We ordered the pastrami egg roll appetizer, which was my favorite item of the night. It was crispy on the outside with salty pastrami and sour sauerkraut inside. Meat.is.so.good.

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There were a bunch of different sausages to choose from, but we went with the special since it sounded, well, special. Beef sausage over mashed potatoes with an apple bourbon sauce! All the meats are made in house btw. Sorry it looks kinda gross:)

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And bacon brussels on the side.

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The menu was full of other items that sounded amazing – can’t wait to go back!

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Saturday, we met friends for brunch at The Company Cafe. Despite the chilly morning air, we sat outside in the sunshine and it felt glorious. I had a local ginger kombucha and a to-die-for bacon and egg biscuit. I think I’m going to dream about this sandwich.

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Matt and I always talk about going to concerts and other performances, but we rarely get our acts together and, as you know, always just end up eating:) So I was excited when my friend Liz discovered a fun indie pop concert in Deep Ellum and organized a group! We rarely go out in Deep Ellum, but it’s such neat area with lots of live music and hole in the wall restaurants.

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We stopped in the famous Angry Dog for beer and bar food before the concert – fried mushrooms and the Angry chili dog!

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The concert was awesome! I LOOVED Cardiknox and Betty Who!!

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The songs were catchy and their dancing was quite entertaining. We had a blast.

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Sunday was also wonderful – we walked to the coffee shop for chai lattes, [attempted] to play tennis, and made fish tacos for dinner. Oh spring weekends, you’re the best.

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Rustic Beer Saturday & Sundown on Sunday

Posted on Mar 24, 2014 | 1 comment

Pizza and wine is becoming a Friday favorite! We opened a local bottle that we received from a friend. It was light and spicy.

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I threw together a pizza with leftovers from our pineapple crockpot chicken along with sheep’s manchego, spicy bbq sauce, and cilantro. Pizza is always good. And we watched Rent because I had never seen it! I was impressed Matt knew many of the songs:)

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Saturday we hit up bootcamp and made a hearty lunch in preparation for some beer drinkin. We were supposed to attend a crawfish boil, but because of the weather, the gathering turned into a visit to Community Brewing. We had been once before, and this time they had a new bar area and many more choices. I accidentally drank all three pints, and after hours of conversation, we decided to go in search of dinner. It was a lovely afternoon and I made new friends in addition to catching up with newish old ones.

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We wanted something low-key, so we walked to the Rustic for Texas homestyle cookin.

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They had a great beer list, but I decided on a pricky pear margarita in honor of our trip to AZ (but really because I was tired of beer!).

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We shared two apps and a burger. Above, the cactus fritters (soo good), and below, the smoked catfish and crackers.

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The burger was a bit dry, but I loved the bun and the green chilies that were served with it. The mashed sweet potatoes were amazing!

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We rarely get dessert in restaurants, and were def. not planning to order one on Saturday, but then I saw this go by….

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A giant peanut butter pie – who can resist?

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I usually get to the grocery store on Friday or Saturday, but didn’t make it this week, so we decided brunch was in order on Sunday. We went to Sundown on Granada, which is officially my new favorite brunch spot! It’s on the hippy side and has incredible vegetarian and vegan options. We had been once before, but only sat at the bar for apps. I started with the vegan green drink made with kale, bananas, berries, cucumbers, mint, agave, and it really hit the spot.

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We definitely only needed one brunch entree, but I had no idea they were gonna be so big! I had their version of a vegan benedict, which was swiss chard, sweet potato hash, chipotle-avocado sauce, and fire roasted salsa, over a housemade quinoa burger. I’ve been a bit disappointed in quinoa burgers lately, but this one was full of flavor (and giant).

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Matt’s benedict was ridiculously good too, and consisted of Shiner brisket and bbq hollandaise over whole wheat molasses toast. I was in a definite food coma after this brunch, but it was good for grocery shopping afterwards because I stuck to my list exactly. And good fuel for the week! I’m working three days and have yet another interview. Hope yall had a good Monday! Adios.

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Vegas

Posted on Mar 17, 2014 | 14 comments

Vegas is intense! I can’t believe how many people were there – I arrived and was like, oh, this is where everybody has been all these years!

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I got to our hotel just as the sun was setting on Friday night! I was the last to arrive and it was glorious to walk into a hotel room of friends! My friend Emily was our host for the weekend and she did an amazing job planning everything and getting us on lists so we could skip the lines and the cover charges! She also works for the Las Vegas Sands, so we got a ridiculously low rate at the Palazzo.

We listened to an epic playlist while getting ready and then headed to the lobby for dinner at SushiSamba. I’m not a sushi person, so I never would have picked this on my own, but it was amazing!

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We had wonderful service, excellent cocktails, and delicious food!

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Highlights included the fried plantains and the sea bass skewers!

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And a complimentary cocktail tower!

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After dinner, we headed across the street to the XS club at the Wynn.

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The club was giant and had an awesome outdoor area.

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I had no idea it was going to happen, but David Guetta appeared as the DJ at 2am!!

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He was awesome, and we made our way to the pit to get a better look!

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Most of us east and central time zone people couldn’t sleep in so we grabbed green juice, hit the gym, and got some lunch at the pool. It was a little too chilly for bathing suits, but I enjoyed a nap under a towel in the wonderful sunshine.

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Saturday evening we got all dolled up for our second night on the town (I definitely could not have handled a third night!).

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Our destination was the Cosmopolitan hotel, where we had drinks in the Chandelier bar. Bourbon for me!

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We had dinner at a fantastic restaurant called Rose.Rabbit.Lie at the Cosmopolitan. The menu was all small plates, so we shared a bunch of dishes, and every single thing I tried was phenomenal. The above brussels sprouts with crispy chicken skin were maybe the best I’ve ever had. The coolest part about dinner though, was that our table was backstage and we dined while a show was happening on the other side of the wall. All the performers would come through the dining room, warm-up with a small act/performance, and then enter the stage door.

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We saw so many interesting things, like this upsidedown man!

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Our main event for the night was the Marquee nightclub. One of Emily’s [INCREDIBLY generous] friends got a table for us! It was wonderful to be able to have drinks (and water!!) right there and be able to sit and relax if we wanted too.

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We spent a large portion of the night debating if the man in the black suit in the left-ish part of the picture was Paul Rudd. If it wasn’t, he was an exact look alike!

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We had [too much] champagne and I loved the girls with sparkers who would bring out the bottles. They even changed outfits each time!

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Needless to say, it was a magical night!

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We ended the trip with brunch at Bouchon Bistro.

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I enjoyed a spiced doughnut and a glorious corned beef hash in honor of St. Patrick’s day. I was super impressed with the food in Las Vegas, and I told matt we are going back just to eat.

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A gigantic thank you to my friend Emily for totally spoiling us and bringing us all together!!!

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One Nighter

Posted on Oct 28, 2012 | 9 comments

After I spent all of Friday on the couch, recovering from my mysterious sickness, I finally felt ok to shower and eat dinner that evening. It felt nice, actually, to just spend a Friday night in with a movie – Matt and I watched Nothing But The Truth, and I really enjoyed it! It was pretty fascinating.

On Saturday, we took a quick one nighter trip to Charlotte to visit friends. One of my college friends lives in Asheville, and one in Charlotte, so the three of us (plus Matt) met up for a mini reunion. We arrived in Charlotte just in time for lunch, and my friend Katie took us to a fun bbq place in her neighborhood. The mac and cheese was good, the bbq great, and the baked beans amazing.

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We spent the afternoon strolling around town and catching up – I can’t believe it’s been so long since I’ve seen these girls! During cocktail hour, Katie introduced us to her bourbon collection. Impressive! I had a tiny mixed drink with ginger ale and a splash of orange juice. She even had the huge bourbon ice cubes.

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Then we headed out to the artsy NoDa area to check out Birdsong Brewery. I’m not sure why I didn’t snap any pictures (maybe I was too busy tasting?) but we tried a flight of six beers. I was really impressed, and loved 4 of the 6, especially the milk stout and the jalapeno pale ale.

We continued on to the trendy Plaza Midwood, where we pushed our way to the bar at Soul Gastrolounge. We waited a while for a table, but had no luck after an hour, so we went ahead and ordered food.

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Matt and I shared these herb cheese-stuffed peppers,

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an amazing flatbread with pistachio pesto and truffled goat cheese,

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and greek meatballs with yogurt sauce. All the food was interesting and tasty. But what was really fantastic was the fresh apple pie waiting at home for us!!

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Katie made this from scratch and it was the perfect ending to a really amazing night out with friends.

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This morning, we dined at Zada Jane’s for brunch.

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The girls and I waiting for a table:)

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I had quite the unique meal -a bed of sweet potato hash browns topped with frittata style eggs, covered with melted cheddar cheese and a big old biscuit. The sweet potato chunks underneath were huge and soft and tasted like they may have been cooked in maple syrup. Aside from all the cheese, I actually cleaned my plate, and although I didn’t feel full at the time, I’ve felt gross ever since:)

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Matt and I got home around dinner time, and picked up soup and cornbread from Whole Foods because that’s all we could fit.

It was kind of a strange weekend given the sick day on Friday, but it turned out to be wonderful in the end. I really love being able to spend time with good friends!

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Baby, BBQ, Brunch

Posted on Jul 29, 2012 | 4 comments

I’m back in the ATL for the final stretch, but going back to NC this weekend made me sooo ready to get back to Durham and regular life! If you are just tuning in, I traveled home to go my sister’s baby shower. She’s due in just a few short weeks!!!

I went home on Thursday night, which means I got to go wedding dress shopping with my mom on Friday!! No purchases yet, but def. found some dresses that I really like.

My sister and her MIL arrived in town on Friday evening, and we had a lazy Friday night with wine, guacamole, shrimp, make-your-own subs, and chocolate chip pie. I’ve been so go-go-go this summer that it was sooo nice to just stay in on a Friday night and relax.

Saturday was the baby shower, which was put on by one of my sister’s childhood friends. Everything was soo cute!

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And the food was fabulous!

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My favorites were the pimento cheese rolls,

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turkey, cheddar, and apple sandwiches,

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brie bites,

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and the bean salad!

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I obviously tried everything!

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And no shower is complete without cake (and ice cream). There were two kinds of cake, both homemade by the host. The fresh strawberry cream in the middle of the chocolate cake was awesome.

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We played a game where we had to guess which guest belonged to different baby pictures.

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But the best part was watching the opening of the presents – it was more exciting than Christmas because they just kept coming!

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The little clothes and toys are my favorite – so cute! And check out this handmade quilt.

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Now we just need the baby to arrive!

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After the shower, I headed to the airport and Matt picked me up on the other side 4 hours later. We drove straight to our friends’ home for a good old summer bbq. We drank Southern Pecan nut brown ale and chowed down on hamburgers and fun-fetti cookies.

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And I got to watch the Olympics too (we don’t have TV here other than Netflix…)

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And this morning, we brunched. I keep hearing about brunch places in our neighborhood, so I’m glad we finally got to check out the brunch at Murphys. We met a Davidson friend there (who is in medical school) and talked about all kinds of interesting things. I had the crab cake benedict with jalapeno hollandaise – tasty. I think the blueberry muffins and scores that arrived before brunch were probably the best thing though.

I’m pretty excited to get to bed tonight. These busy weekends leave me soo tired.

What were you guys up to?

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