Monday, July 27, 2009


Whee! Went out to a pub near Fenway Park Thursday night to watch the Red Sox game, which was a lot of fun.

It was pretty exciting towards the end, and luckily Boston won.

Fenway isn't as close to a train as it could be, but the important thing is it wasn't half as crowded getting back as I dreaded!

Tokyo prepared me well.

Forgot to mention we tried a Tex-Mex place the other night. Sigh. It was supposedly a four-year "Best of..." winner for Quincy*. Does Quincy only have one Tex-Mex place? It wasn't gross, it was just...below average. For one thing, they had shredded carrots in their salsa. That may be a fun way to mix it up at home, but it's just not the way things are done. Period. That and it was on the watery, bland side. Fail.

The actual dinner was ok, but nothing special, and it wasn't really on the cheap, either. I have a feeling I will just have to wait until my trips home for satisfying Tex-Mex. I think I'm already done giving chances on that one.

*Quincy, for the record, is not pronounced the way it looks. Nay, foolish you. Rather, it is pronounced Quin-zy.

Anyhoo, got another 3 books online, used, praying and mostly sure for the right editions. Another $105. Some of these books are "recommended" and not "required," but what sort of new law student isn't going to read those, too? I left "poor" behind about $40K ago, so what the fuck. Grr.

Saturday night we went to a restaurant off one of the piers in South Boston. South Boston seems to be a bit of a mixed bag.

I knew this couldn't possibly be part of the original sign, but it still took me a moment.

Great city views, though, and it's close to the water for a nice breeze!

I have no idea what the weird looking building is, but I like it.

Anyhow, the place we ate was called No Name Restaurant. It's in all the guide books, really well-known for being a very basic hole-in-the-wall with reasonably priced, very fresh seafood.

I had heard that the service was mediocre at best, but I am here to tell you that "mediocre" is beyond pushing it.

The end of the meal makes it a little clearer--you go downstairs to pay at the register. Considering the larger part of the crowd is probably tourists, I'm betting the waitstaff gets fuck-all in the tip department. It's a vicious cycle if you ask me, though: I can't recall the last time I had such impressively shitty service.

My mom and I had almost gone there when we visited last, but it was going to be dark and I didn't want to be wandering around South Boston at night--plus it was chilly then. Instead we went to Wagamama. We made the right decision, no doubt.

The food at No Name was certainly fresh and quite good, but when you factor in the shit service and crap decor, well overall: meh. My lobster was really great--at $28, a fabulous price, and while I discovered the claw meat is just as great as the tail (tail still wins, fyi), I simply cannot bring myself to eat, as Matt Damon so delicately puts it in Mystic Pizza, "the green stuff." (Aka, the "tomalley.")



Getting back was easy, since we'd spotted the silver line. Turns out the silver line is not a subway, but rather a trolley-thing. See the glowing building?

That is the station and I have decided that every station should glow at night. Also, it might as well glow the color of the train lines that stop there. Kthxbai.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

"Be a beacon"?

Happy Birthday, Mom!

Maru says Happy Birthday (Where was Maru when I was moving?!)

And a new Simon's Cat!

Friday, July 24, 2009

...or, you could just do the Republican method, and roll a dildo in glitter!

It's so hard to watch Jon Stewart in the internet lab. I may have earphones on, but it's hard not to laugh out loud in this tiny room.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

No, no. It's not a cow. It's a minotaur. It's a creature of myth. And he got this one out of your mom's closet.

This is Bourdain's big spot lately. I'll put the suitcase away after our stuff finally gets here.

Mid-meow, but a little drunk looking, perhaps.

Mouche always has to be at the highest point in the room. Windows are also a big favorite, and I'm not sure how I feel about him being in this one, since it's on the kitchen counter.

It's foggy again today, but this is my view from the kitchen counter. Usually you can see the water behind the trees. Very pretty and great breeze.

Excuse me for a moment. I am about to punch the sweet fucking life out of the chick next to me, who keeps re-telling the most insipid, worthless story to the guy next with her. I want to just lean over and say, "Can you work the details out for him somewhere else, please?" Also, she was humming Jingle Bells a couple minutes ago. You can see where my frustration is coming from.

Ok, back to story time. Here is my balcony. You actually can see into your neighbor's landing, but it's not too intrusive. In our case, Jim. He's quite nice. We have the corner, so we only have to worry about one neighbor.

The marsh in front of our building during the day...

...and at night! When the tide is in, it looks like this.

The night we got into Boston, it was quite foggy...but pretty!

And we had dinner at Legal Seafoods so I could get my crabmeat roll sandwich. SOOOOOOOOOOOO good.

Unrelated but cute, this was at our second hotel. Bourdain's paranoid and hides constantly, but he gets a little lazy about appearances when he's sleeping...

Also got our mailbox set up. They accept all packages for us, including anything that needs a signature. And since we have nighttime concierge, we can always get our stuff. So send packages! ;)

They also have two dry cleaners who drop off and pick up a few times a week. For an even bigger bonus, the friendliest employee is from Fort Worth and is also the apartment cat-sitter. Score!

Sadly, our place does not recycle, but I can sort of see why not. It's just not feasible considering the building's set-up. But as far as little things being exciting, we do have a rubbish chute in the hallway by the elevator. Listening to the trash plummet to its demise from eight floors up is both scary and gratifying.

Lastly, I went to the bookstore today and got five of my books. Three are for one class, two for another. So a small dent, really. For $201.75. Holy. Shit.

And please, for next time, can I get a bag that's a little less condescending?

I mean, is the bag mocking me? I feel like it wants to pat me on the head. Hey, fuck you, bag. Maybe I'm sensitive.

It should start unloading buckets of rain any minute now (so I'm told), so I'm heading off upstairs to nurse some Tuaca from Texas and read about the joys of coal mining disaster lawsuits, whee!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

You're legally allowed to drink now, so we figured the best thing for you was a car.

WHO DROVE THROUGH NEW YORK CITY AND SURVIVED?! Yeah, that's me, thank you! *takes a bow*

Actually, as scary as the idea seemed to me, it really wasn't so bad. There was a shitload of traffic at 12:30 on a Tuesday, but I managed okay. We drove across the George Washington Bridge (sweet), and it sucks that I basically drove right past Drew's place! (He and Luis live about 4-5 blocks off the bridge.) Next time.

Honestly, driving in BOSTON, on the other hand, was a clusterfuck the likes of which I will never willingly experience again. It was 3:30 and the wall-to-wall traffic was everywhere. And this wasn't downtown! I was in the South part, then Quincy. Hot damn. I am stunned and amazed we all made it in one piece. You know that scene in Clueless when Dion accidentally gets on the highway in her convertible? Yeah, I kept picturing that.

We are, sans stuff of course, all moved in to our new place. Both cats have found their new spots, typical hiding places for both. Mouchette is on top of the cabinet above the refridgerator. Bourdain was hiding on one of the pantry shelves (if we left the door ajar). While we were at dinner, however, he felt this was not secure enough, choosing instead my half-empty suitcase (quite heavy, really, considering it was unzipped but lid down). So that is his bed for now.

I would upload pix, but I'm in our downstairs internet cafe and I "don't have privileges" to install hardware. I'll have to bring my laptop down here to load them...

Also, there are only three computers and I chose the one with the gimpy-ass mouse. There are few things as rapidly frustrating as a gimp mouse, you know?

Anyway, love Boston so far (it was very foggy yesterday afternoon and in the 60s!!), but it really doesn't feel like I live here yet. It just feels...odd. The apartment is not helping.

I really love our apartment, but the whole place really feels like a hotel. First of all, it's a high-rise. We're on the 8th floor. Also, all the halls have awful, mismatched brown-pattern carpeting. The place is immaculately clean, but it just screams out, "HOTEL CARPET."

Seriously, we're worried we're going to forget to lock the door, since it's weighted just like hotel room doors are!

The people are either incredibly friendly or utterly silent and stoic, it's taking some getting used to.

Last night we opted for Legal Seafoods, which is not cheap, but

A) it's on the wharf
B) I knew how to get to it
C) the crabmeat roll sandwich is orgasmic

Win! And it was really damn yummy. We even got keylime pie. (Still not as good as the pie at Union Station in DC.) Our waitress had a great personality and dinner was very, very yummy.

I was also introduced to some more ever-delightful liquor laws. I had asked beforehand: if I bought a bottle, could I get it corked for the ride back? Yes, came the answer, but according to the liquor laws, you have to drink at least half the bottle first. Then you must sign (two) things for it and it will be brought to you in a CLEAR (!!) sealed bag for the trip home. Strange.

Coming from a place that brown-bags it (if at all), I was a little surprised. Then again, I also come from a place where I have many times witnessed people order to-go cups for their "water." (Though in this case it's typically for margaritas rather than wine.) And one time I was with friends when a waiter suggested this! Oh, and let's not forget the ease with which one can order an "adult slushie" from your local Beer Barn.

Sigh. Ah, Texas. You shall be missed.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Seven schools in seven states and the only thing different is my locker combination.

A heavy downpour nearly stuck us in Maryland, but we got through it and stopped for the night in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania.

I do not like this town, because it clearly does not like us. The whole town just has an odd vibe, plus it took us about 7 tries to find a place to eat. We chose a mediocre pizza place--it was like really good mall pizza.

I can't wait to get out and I have no pictures of it. Here's hoping we make it all the way to Boston tomorrow. Garmin Nuvi says we have 7 1/2 hours left, but we shall see...

In the name of the father, the son and the holy toast.

I was quite sad to read about Frank McCourt's death...

And it's a shame Angela's Ashes was a bit of a crap movie--and it even starred Emily Watson! So you know the problem was elsewhere. But what a really great book.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Please. Have mercy. I've been wearing the same underwear since Tuesday.

May I recommend Bardstown, Kentucky?

So the drive from Arkansas up was pretty uneventful. There was a light smattering of rain here and there, and some fah-king crazy drivers I made sure to distance myself from. But mostly it was a really pretty drive. We spent most of the day driving through Tennessee, only stopping for a couple Americanos and Arby's.

Both cats were really well behaved. I did all the driving so Bourdain could sleep half on D, half on the seat. I'm sure he would behave for me, too, but I didn't want to rock the boat! Plus, I really do enjoy driving.

Now we're in Bardstown, which is just down the road from Lexington. It's quite small and quaint. I was afraid we'd be hard pressed to find decent food, but it turns out the food was the best part of the day!

This is a pretty neat write-up of someone's day in the town, highlighting Kurtz's Restaurant.

It's a cute place inside and out. There's even a motel right behind, sort of attached, that would probably be a great and reasonably priced place to stay.

I like the lemons and flowers, even if I am not sure why this has been done...

It is really good "Southern home cooking"--lots of fried chicken-type things, but I had a ham dish. We'll get to that in a moment, because it will take some time. But I think this town is a really popular place to stop off, considering its proximity to Louisville and Lexington.

(Side note, and asking your pardon in advance for being crude: we were soooooo close to stopping in Elizabethtown just so that I could avenge the hour of my life (I couldn't even finish it and I still want revenge) spent watching that utterly irritating piece of shit film (of the same name) by taking a very healthy dump there. It was just slightly out of our way, sadly. Ok, back to the point.)

So yes, this town is cute and worth stopping at along the way. Apparently others think so, too, since I did notice this when I was leaving the restaurant:

Hee hee.

So my dinner was the Virginia Baked Ham. That was damn yummy, BUT!! ALSO!! It came with a thick pineapple glaze, deeply baked apple slices (cinnamon!!), potatoes, green beans and cornbread.

HOLY. SHIT. It was just so, so good. Especially after all that driving. Wow.

I'm not done yet! Did you save room for PIE?! Kurtz's is also really famous for its pies. They have a cabinet in the back with four GIANT pies. You can't really tell in this picture since there's no point of reference, but they are so giant.

Our choices that night were coconut, chocolate or lemon. No contest. LEMON.

I was shoveling the remnants onto my fork, nearly licking the plate. omfg.

Both cats seem much more at ease here tonight. It's much quieter and they're getting to be pros. Sort of.

As for me, I'm having some of our leftover Arkansas beer, Diamond Bear, and watching the AFI Lifetime Achievement Award for Michael Douglas. It's pretty gooey, but luckily I've always liked him and he keeps getting all verklempt looking at the sentimental moments. It's kinda sweet, even if it is a big schmooze fest.

Here's hoping we can make it to Pennsylvania tomorrow!

It takes all kinds of critters to make Farmer Vincent's fritters.

Welcome to Little Rock, Arkansas. Bourdain is NOT. FUCKING. HAPPY. Here here is, hiding as much as he possibly can.

He was pretty quiet for a lot of the trip, but he has been so stressed, panting heavily and only shitting and peeing once (not when we pulled over and got out the box later, natch). Mouche is doing pretty well. He's not crazy about it, but he is doing well.

The hotel is decent--free wifi!

We had been aiming for Memphis, but I didn't want to look for a hotel in the dark with outdoor entrances that wasn't scary and had something edible nearby, etc. So we settled for Little Rock.

I also noted just now that right outside Memphis, had we needed to stop early, would have landed us in West Memphis, AR. The town "tends to have crime levels considerably above the national average," not to mention the fact that everyone surely still associates them with The West Memphis 3. (It's not the three convicted kids I have a problem with, it's the town itself. You've heard this rant before, let's move on.)

Anyway, the trip thus far has been gloriously uneventful. The highways have been kinda pretty, actually. Lots of green. The evenings here are really great--no humidity and it's slightly cool.

We chose a place called Razorback Pizza for dinner. It was the most crowded and popular-looking of a cluster of various pizza joints around. This was a plus on its side. A big negative, however (due to possibly being in a less-than-stellar part of Little Rock?) was this on the door:

We were really hungry, we'd seen lots of cops hanging out just up the street and really, it didn't seem like a bad neighborhood. *cough* Hi, mom!

So Razorback. Feral pig, boar, whatever. A little odd, but it's not my place. The little pink ones were cute on top of the salad bar. I did not touch the salad bar. This place had a Mr. Gatti's-meets-Flying-Tomato thing going on, it made me hesitant. (Pizza turned out to be pretty damn good, fyi.)

But hey, fun, whatevs.

It should be noted that the boar/pig thing really isn't creepy until you see him on the side of your beer and all you can think of is Motel Hell.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The frost is off the ground, and Moving Day is at hand. Prepare to move your very, very odd family.

My goodies are currently being moved. Hooray for laptops and the ability to stay connected! Must. Have. Internets.

Weirdly, there seem to be only two guys, but they also looked at my stuff and said, "Piece of cake." WHERE WERE YOU LAST TIME? Hey, as long as the whole cake makes it to Massachusetts, cool.

Then we get to figure out where to drive! I'm thinking Memphis. Anyone know where the best bbq in Memphis is?

Friday, July 17, 2009

You're more like the grey slush that gets plowed in an Arby's parking lot.

I had so much to do today, aside from work: pick up my new glasses, visit my good friend, get my massage (I know, I know), go out to lunch, sell my car, etc.

And in a completely unrelated aside, don't you hate it when you're up late at night and some episodes of some syndicated show that you actually like comes on, and somehow they are ALL THE WORST EPISODES OF THAT SHOW EVER.

Anyhoo, back to my point. I only had a brief moment, you know, a what the fuck moment when I was locking up at work and alone and not only not going back but about to sell my car a few hours later. I did not freak out, and a cell phone is a good friend.

One friend texted, "It's perfectly normal to feel this way. Savor the silence and embrace the freedom. So say we all. ;)"

Another texted, "I'm a little bit everything okay?"

And yet the third grabbed me and said, "SMOKE UP, JOHNNY!"

And I really think there should be more entertaining things on TV this late. Afraid to go to bed because then it will be stressful moving time!

The only thing that would make me not care would be if I could just transport all of us there. The stuff can take its seven-day journey or whatever. But yeah, otherwise, it looks like Tuesday is going to be Beantown Day!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

You can do this, but that would require you to stop snacking on children while they dream.

Look at me! I think I've got my shit together! Pie for everyone!

I faxed my authorization to the movers and it's ON for Saturday. My friends are buying my Vobeast Hans. And lastly, I've been given all my shots necessary for school (wtf, Hep B? really, guys?) even though it was definitely a hassle.

I went to the doctor to update my tetanus, but they don't do Hep B shots (which are a series of THREE shots spaced out over 4-6 months, nice). So I go to the county health department. Yesterday at 11:31 they inform me they stop at 11:30, even though I'd been speaking with them on the phone just prior and been given the oh-so-helpful descriptive assistance of, "Yes, the building is brown," (it's NOT, fyi) and "It's on Loop 288." Omfg, that and EVERY OTHER STATE OR COUNTY BUILDING EVER. So I did not eat her bitchy little face, yay me.

Today? Got the nicest, most helpful person (little inflexible rat girl was also there) who was the sweetest person and chatted with me endlessly (in a good way) about how much I'm going to like Boston and the Quincy Market. (I almost drooled on the counter a little during that last part.) The woman who gave me a shot perked up when she saw me smile upon walking back when my number was called. It is my impression most of the clientele does not smile.

I did think it was a little odd to be asked why I wanted a Hep B shot, and other than needing to update my records for school, why would someone get one? I guess if one is my age (i.e., born prior to '91 when it wasn't one of the routine baby shots) and still playing the field, it's a good idea, but do you need to ask?

Maybe they get a lot of people who are already infected and uh, let's say, uninformed? I did not ask.

Anyhoo. I'm so behind on this I forgot to mention the greatest show I saw last week at Scat Jazz Lounge! I took my mom to see Kat Edmonson, an Austin singer I saw a year ago at the Elephant Room. A friend and I were staying at the Hilton and I wanted to walk down there simply because I have such fond memories of the place. I picked a good night!

She's exactly my size (well, sans pooch and presumably younger), but with this wonderful sultry part-Billie Holiday-part-Peggy-Lee voice going on. (So unfair!) She finally got to release an album, Take to the Sky, this past March (I think?) and it is really great. (My favorite tracks include Just One Of Those Things, Summertime, and Charade.) She also does a great The Very Thought of You cover, but it's only on her myspace, not the album.

And speaking of things not on the album, when I saw her last, she sang Over the Rainbow, and though I'd already really noticed her, that was what sent me over the top. So last week during the break I chatted her up, mentioning how much I enjoyed that cover (which, as it turns out, is one she has rarely played live). Hooray, she sang it at the beginning of the next set just for me! Squee! When some songs are so often covered, it's hard to do them well enough to be noticed. No problem with that here!

So that was a really great last show in Fort Worth for me, and I was doubly glad I got to take my mom. Scat has always been a great venue, I wish I'd known about it years ago!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Hey, at least now we know when the next train was due.

And speaking of great ways to pass the weekend...

In addition to delicious food, I also got to knock out a bunch of Netfux this weekend.

Sunday was a Myrna Loy double feature, neither of which I'd seen before. The first was Manhattan Melodrama, which I have to say earns kind of a meh. It was certainly decent, but I'm also not sure I'd need to see it again. (For the record, both movies I watched also starred Clark Gable, but he was hardly the reason I rented them. I love him in It Happened One Night, but to be honest, I can usually take him or leave him...)

The second was Wife vs. Secretary. So yeah, before you get any ideas (I mean jesus, what a great title), it's 1936. It's dated and more than minutely sexist, but it was actually pretty enjoyable. I enjoyed it more than the first one, to be honest!

And though he's barely in it, I am still going to state for the record that I just CAN. NOT. STAND. James Stewart. His very voice makes me cringe; I simply cannot endure him. I may be in the minority but I simply loathe him as an actor, sorry. I don't necessarily think he's bad, either, it's just HIM. Sorry. Ok, got that off my chest, /rantoff.

So those two were quite enjoyable, even if a little dated.

I also watched a movie that I hesitate to call a "documentary," even though it's classified as one. It was interesting enough, in a car wreck "Real World" sort of way; a little movie called American Teen. It's from 2008 and the marketing makes it pretty clear it's trying to look at the Breakfast Club stereotypes from a real school (the jock, princess, etc.).

It's not to say all their situations and emotions weren't real, and each kid certainly went through everything shown in the film, I'm sure. However, the editing seriously reeks of manipulation and forced storyline. (Sad to say, this is especially true based on one kid's disappearing and reappearing acne, but also in haircuts and clothes.) The drama and sequence of events feel extremely forced, edited and contrived.

That alone really blackens it in my mind as a documentary, but additionally, the very IDEA of a documentary is to capture your subject by interfering as little as possible while shooting (because otherwise, it's not the same, you know?). And the presence of the camera is VERY MUCH felt in every moment of these people's lives and undoubtedly affects the things they do. So this should win some "Way to Bastardize What Documentaries Should Be" award, if you ask me.

And again, that itself doesn't make the final product BAD, absolutely not, it's just not what a real documentary is. The phony-shit editing is pretty offensive to me if they want to be classified as "documentary," but I could certainly respect the research, effort and film itself in another category.

Turning to a COMPLETELY different world altogether, I've gotten hooked on a Korean TV drama called "My Lovely Sam-Soon."

I never thought it was possible (all that pop drama and angst! Gah.) This one aired in the summer of 2005; it's not a TV show, it's basically a mini-series (it aired in June and July).

It focuses on a woman who is a pastry chef (and looking for love, natch), and considered "chubby" and "a spinster." (She is a little rounder than her co-stars, but she merely looks HEALTHY; also, she is 30. I'm not being biased, but BLOW ME.) Sadly, I know this could easily be the case were it set in Tokyo, so I'm assuming Seoul is no different.

The interwebs says it is basically considered the Bridget Jones of Korean TV drama.

It's cute and I want more episodes.

The stars at night! Are big and bright!

Considering I'm moving away, this made me smile (from TFLN):

(847): So I used to make fun of texas a lot, then I got here and I found a place where I could get my tequila in a to-go cup with a straw and I realized that this is the only place I ever want to be

Sunday, July 12, 2009

They make action figures out of you, drummer not included.

Had the MOST delicious dinner last night with my sisters Veloute and Alex. The restaurant is called Lonesome Dove, located in the Fort Worth Stockyards in what used to be Hell's Half Acre.

This is the dinner menu, which changes daily but this one's pretty close to what ours looked like.

We were early for our reservation, so we sat at the bar and all sipped on a Texas Tini (I really cannot order anything "tini" without thinking of Scrubs' JD and his Apple Tinis...) and a shot of Tuaca. The 'tini was faboo (vodka, cranberry and peach schnapps--my kinda cosmo, really), but it was kinda lost next to the Tuaca. Tuaca looks a little like whiskey at first, til you get it near your nose! It's sweet but strong. It reminded me of Bailey's--it's got a caramel/vanilla thing going on but it's far from rich.

I'll be buying a bottle tomorrow. :)

So we got seated (it's actually a pretty small restaurant--reservations are absolutely necessary, luckily Alex thought to do so in advance!) and ordered a 4-item sampler of appetizers and a bottle of 2005 Ridge, York Creek, Napa Valley. DAMN. Vel & I are big Zinfandel fans and she chose this one with the waiter's help. We thought it would be a nice selection with the meats...

As for the four samplers we chose, in order of favorite from best to least best for me (it was all really succulent): wild boar ribs with house BBQ sauce. It falls off the bone like butter. I could have nearly eaten just a plate of them. The second best was the bacon-wrapped stuffed (with almond) figs. Vel had had to convince me I'd like them (I've not had good fig run-ins in the past), but they really were unusual and savory.

Third were the rabbit-rattlesnake sausages with spicy manchego rosti and creme fraiche. These were more interesting than "yummy", and they were the wild card we picked. They were tasty, but I'm not sure I'd order them again! Fourth was actually tastier than the sausages but somehow it didn't do it for me as much as Vel and Alex enjoyed them. They were the blue corn lobster "hush puppies." I love lobster, and it was still an incredible appetizer! (Obviously, all four were!)

We decided to all share one second course, since it was mostly intended as a palate cleanser (I presume). Alex picked it out and it was mind-blowing. (Ok, mostly due to bacon, but let me explain.) It was the butter lettuce with a lemon viniagrette, chili pepitas and applewood smoken bacon lardoons. The salad was really tasty and light, but oh my holy lord, those bacon lardoons. I still can't really say what a "lardoon" is (I'm sure Veloute will have a far more descriptive post than this!) but instead of a piece of bacon, it's more like a bacon crouton.


Then it was time for the third, main course. I ordered the New Zealand red deer chop with mountain elk sausage. It had a pepperiness to the start of each bite but the great thing about venison is how unlike other meat it is. It makes it tricky to describe well here, but suffice it to say: gorgeous.

Now, we only remembered to take pictures towards the end of the meal, so excuse me shooting what was such a lovely dish post-tear-in, but it was so good.

My dish came with some crazy mushrooms, which I perturbed my waiter about by needing them on the side, but whatever. I even ate one to satisfy Vel, and it turns out I still just can't do mushrooms. (I really wish I could, and these were deemed quite delicious.)

Alex had their signature dish, the roasted garlic stuffed beef tenderloin with western plaid hash and syrah demi-glace. There is a reason this is their signature dish. Her plate, with mine and Vel's help, was the first to get polished off:

All gone. But That was a mouth-wateringly tender cut and I think it would be my choice next time.

Veloute had the Alaskan halibut with smoked crawfish stew and crispy yucca. Now I'm not ordinarily a fish person, but this was really something. The buttery fall-apart goodness of the fish was completed so nicely with the crispy texture of the yucca. This fish dish absolutely held its own with the other meats.

To be fair, the asparagus was from Alex's dish, but everything on that table was orgasmic and everything on that table went beyond expectations. Hey, even the mushrooms I sampled were better than what I'd had in the past!

Now to tie all these together, there had been a little bread coarse of spicy jalapeno cornbread and a nice simple brown loaf. Very yum. Far more impressive was the side we ordered of white truffle macaroni and cheese. Unlike traditional elbow macaroni, they used orzo. It was...transcendental. I know it made the back of my knees tingle and I thought Veloute was going to take me down with a fork for the remnants! (In a nice sisterly way, of course, Vel. ;D)

See? That's called, "fucking good."

Finally, there was the dessert menu...even though we weren't busting at the seams yet (amazingly), we decided to share one dessert and another Tuaca.

Dessert was fresh Mexican doughnuts with cajeta & chocolate dipping sauces. I think Vel and Alex preferred the cajeta sauce (it is pretty impressive), but especially with the wine paired, I really did favor the dark chocolate dipping sauce.


So this was actually both my sisters' birthday treat to me, and it was way too much! I'm so glad I got to try this place and would absolutely recommend it and readily spend another evening there. I also can't wait to hear Veloute's re-telling of the food--it will have nuance and detail I just couldn't write as well!

Friday, July 10, 2009

I hid under your porch because I love you.

The last couple days in Brooklyn were spent in Park Slope. There were so many cute knick-knack places (admittedly out of my price range!) and yummy food and drink. Plus, drooling over the homes is an easy way to pass the time.

LOVE the mossy steps.

The main street in Park Slope (I think it was 7th?) has some really great buildings...

I think this one was a children's toy store? Really great, though...

All the streets with homes have wonderful trees, naturally. Apparently it's impossible to find a two-bedroom brownstone in Brooklyn for under half a million. I'm not saying I can't see why, but jesus.

We also stopped at Gorilla Coffee, and wowzers. We all three agreed that is some goddamn strong coffee. And we all had different drinks!

The rest of the evening was spent relaxing out and about...

We had fresh raw oysters at Sidecar, along with some damn yummy sandwiches. We finished the night at a really cool beer shop--and the owner was originally from Carrollton here in DFW!

It is a nice change of pace to be able to walk around and eat/drink great stuff, then be able to walk back home! Even in Tokyo and presumably soon in Boston, I'll still have to take a train (NOT that I'm complaining), but Brooklyn seems like a really great place to live. (Now to dig up half a million dollars...)