Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Antipasto Kabobs

I'm back, its been a long week off (I didn't realize it had been that long!). It was my friend Rosie's birthday over the weekend and I hosted a mini dinner party for her. For an appetizer/small bite/whatever I decided to make an antipasto kabob that my stepsister made for her girls birthday party (I will blog about this later, such a cool party). 
The best thing about this recipe is you can do whatever you want, it's simple to put together and its a crowd pleaser. 
Antipasto Kabobs


Ingredients (choose to your liking)
Balsamic vinaigrette (or other italian dressing)*
Mozzarella balls (or small cute pieces)*
Cherry Tomatoes*

1. Cook tortellini as directed on box. When finished cooking, drain and then toss with dressing and let marinade for at least 30 minutes in the fridge.
2. Place items of your liking on kabobs and then refrigerate until its time to serve! 
*what I used

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

3 Forty Grill and Skylines

I have never been a huge fan of brunch but this place has definitely made me rethink my opinion. Located on the waterfront looking over at the New York skyline, this is the place to be. There is something just so amazing/breathtaking about skylines. 
Deciding to wander along the waterfront we stumbled upon 3 Forty Grill, they were busy but we managed to snag a seat outside without having to wait. 
They offer a prix-fix brunch menu (or you can get a la carte) for $22 that includes an entree and 2 drinks...choice between a mimosa or bloody mary.
I ordered the Steak 'N' Eggs $25 ($15 a la carte) marinated char-grilled hanger steak and two eggs any style, I got egg whites for a $ more. This was delicious-totally my kind of brunch. 
D ordered the Truffled Eggs Benedict $24($14 a la carte) prosciutto di parma, black truffle hollandaise, toasted english muffin. This was amazing, the truffled hollandaise was spectacular, it gave the benedict a whole new dimension. Not being a fan of benedicts I would order this in a heartbeat. 
D's bro ordered the Smoke Salmon Platter $24 ($15 a la carte) scottish lox, cream cheese, vine ripe tomatoes, hard cooked eggs, red onion, capers, toasted fresh baked bagel . Quite the impressive platter and he enjoyed it. 
All three of us enjoyed our dishes, the service was good and everything was a great deal I would highly recommend this place for brunch. 


340 Sinatra Drive
Hoboken, NJ
3 Forty Grill on Urbanspoon

Monday, July 23, 2012

NYC: Parm

I have had two people tell me how awesome Parm was, so on my recent trip to NYC Dani and I decided that we would eat here for dinner. This was hands down one of the best meals I have eaten in awhile. I apologize for the horrible photos (the restaurant was very dark), but this was hands down one of the best meals I have had in awhile. 

Based on a recommendation from a friend who lives in the city stating that this may just be the best bite of the city he has had we ordered a Mozzarella Ball $9 and Garlic Bread $5. I don't know about the best bite in the city but it is pretty darn close. Great mozzarella-you will think twice about eating shredded mozz from the grocery store after this. 
D, D's bro and I all ordered an Our Roots Drink $12 (root, ginger beer, vanilla) based on a mouthwatering photo that we saw. The drink was ok, def not worth the $12 price tag. It sort of tasted like a flat less flavorful root beer. 
D and D's friend ordered the Chicken Parm. When you order a Parmesan you can order it 3 ways: on a roll $9, a hero $12 or a platter $17. Her friend got the roll and D got the platter which comes with either ziti or a salad and the parm comes without bread. This was delicious. Perfect Chicken Parmesan.
I ordered the Meatball Parm on a hero $12. Delicious. 
D's bro Ricky ordered the special featured for Saturday night, and def the star out of all of our dishes, the Veal Parm $25 served with a warm spinach salad-like side. I am not a fan of Veal and I LOVED this and everyone agreed it was the best meal. I don't know if this normal or not, but they put a layer of zucchini (or another similar veggie) on top of the veal...so good.  
I realize my descriptions of the tastes are not very in-depth, but just think of your typical Parm dish, except much better. I highly recommend this place-I am still thinking about this meal.

This is a very small restaurant so be prepared to wait if you come on the weekend (it's worth the wait). Luckily there are lots of bars around where you can go and wait or you can just wander around the area-lot's to see. I would recommend any of the dishes we got above. Personally I would skip the drinks, $12 is a lot for a drink that is just ok and $14 for a small glass of wine is pricey-I know its NYC but I still think it is a lot. 

248 Mulberry Street
New York, New York
Parm  on Urbanspoon 
some other eats from this trip
Momofuku Noodle Bar
3 Forty Grill
Johnny Pepperoni

Friday, July 20, 2012

Johnny Pepperoni in Hoboken & rain

I am sitting here in Hoboken at my friends house writing this right now. Why may you ask am I wasting precious time in Hoboken/NYC sitting at a computer-well because the weather looks like this (OK... looking at this photo its not THAT bad but its enough to make me feel lazy)
I figured I might as well get this review out of the way as I will myself to get motivation to shower and venture to the city. Last night after I arrived here, Dani and I walked to a place called Johnny Pepperoni that she has been wanting to try. Once of the things I love about Hoboken is that you can walk everywhere-I miss that so much.

Anyways, I get to her place, drop my junk off, grab my camera and vino (because places here are BYO..wine-awesome!) and we head out the door. We get to the restaurant and I realized I forgot my camera batter, sad day-good thing iPhones are amazing at pretty much everything. There was no corkage fee for this restaurant! 

We ordered 2 starters: Arancini di Risso $8 (Sicilian style rice fritters, prosciutto, fontina and tomato sauce) and Bruschetta $3 (ricotta, cherry tomatoes and basil). Both were delicious. I had my hesitations about the arancini because I have had it multiple times at other places and have never really liked the risotto used but at Johnny's the rice was creamy and delicious. For the bruchetta, I loved the fresh tomatoes and the variety of the colors. 
They brought out bread + butter. Decent if you need a vessel for getting sauce to your mouth but we ordered pizza so we were not impressed. It wasn't bad, just not worth the space in your stomach when you have all these other yummy goodies!
We ordered my usual pizza of choice, Prosciutto and Arugula $18 (tomato, fresh mozzarella, procioutto, arugula). Something was a little off with the prosciutto, not my favorite type maybe? but it was still a really good pizza and I had the leftovers this morning for breakfast (yum!).

We sat outdoors, it was adorable.

This place was really good, I was happy with my meal so if you are in the area craving Italian/Pizza stop by and give Johnny Pepperoni a try!

Stars: ★   ★ (4/5)

219 11th Street
Hoboken, NJ
Johnny Pepperoni on Urbanspoon

ps. I am going here and here later this weekend!! So exited :)

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Lauriol Plaza in Dupont

This past Saturday I went with my friend Carrie and her sister to Dupont Circle to celebrate Bastille day at L'enfant cafe. It ended up raining so we decided to just go to a restaurant down the road and stumbled upon Lauriol Plaza. Lauriol Plaza is a three story restaurant featuring tex-mex cuisine. It was pretty busy but we managed to get a seat on the covered rooftop patio-awesome. If you come here definitely sit on the roof.
While looking at our menu, the server stopped by and took our drink orders which was water initially while we decided which pitcher we wanted and he immediately frowned and walked away once he heard that. I could tell from there on it was going to be a poor service night.

They started out by bringing us out chips + salsa which were pretty good. The salsa was pretty watery so it was messy, and it was warm which I thought was a little weird but the flavor was good.
We ended up getting a frozen swirl pitcher for $31.95 (strawberry+regular margarita). These were pretty tasty, and the pitcher equaled 6 glasses so we each got 2 margaritas. These really packed a punch, we were all feeling it after one (OK...I was).
After getting the drinks, and this was totally my bad, but I didn't notice that one of the runners put a new thing of salsa behind my drink and I totally put my camera lens cover in it #fail...woops-good thing it was just the lid :)
I ordered a small Beef Quesadilla for $8.60. It was pretty good, kinda seemed like a lot of money for a small quesadilla though.
I also ordered a cup of Chile con Queso for $4.95. The flavor was good, but like the salsa it was extremely watery.
Carrie ordered the Laredo Platter $11.30 (one shredded beef enchilada, chicken enchilada and chicken taco). Carrie liked hers and I tried her enchilada which was good and a piece of the chicken which wasn't bad. I would definitely recommend the shredded beef enchiladas.
C's sister got the Santa Fe Platter(vegetarian) $11.30 (one cheese enchilada, cheese chile relleno, and a guacamole taco). She enjoyed her meal, I tried some of the chile relleno which was ok, it was a little bland for my taste. I was impressed that they didn't skimp on the guac in the taco, there was more then enough, Sarah actually ended up taking some of it out because it was packed to the brim. 
While the food was decent and the drinks were good, service was horrible and I will not be coming back. I do not like being ignored because we didn't initially order a drink (as you can see we did, just not immediately). Although it was semi-busy we watched him going to his other tables multiple times that literally surrounded us on all sides without him even glancing at ours. 

When we finally got the chance to order a drink the server didn't even looking at me, and then the second he checked our ID's he slinked away not even giving us a chance to order our actual food. He never stopped by to see how the food was and he just had a frown on his face the entire time. He also gave us a hard time about splitting the bill when we say other tables around us doing the same thing.

Our bill was pretty close to $80 so he would have gotten a pretty sizable tip had he not been a jerk because we all tip 20% on average-in fact it takes a lot for me to tip anything less, and believe me he got a lot less which pained me to do so.

1835 18th Street NW
Washington, DC 20009
Lauriol Plaza on Urbanspoon

I have experienced service like this before at a certain restaurant where I expressed my opinion about the service and I got a really nasty response from someone who can only be from that restaurant who did not like my comments on the service so I will soon be writing a post on why I comment on both the positive and the negative and why I believe it is my right to do so.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Pilates, Kitty Monsta and New Blog Design!

Today I woke up at 4:45am. Why you may ask would I wake up at this ungodly hour. Perhaps I better back up one day. For the past couple of days I have been pet sitting my mom and Jeff's animals, 2 dogs:Tyson and Lacy and a cat: Kitty Monsta.

Yesterday when they were picking up the animals I got a phone call while I was still at work frantic that they could not find the cat. They had looked all over the house and could not find him, so I immediately freaked out and thought somehow I lost him. My mom decided to spend the night hoping that he would come back/appear/etc. Well about an hour after Jeff left (after they had looked for him for about an hour) Kitty comes sauntering up to my mom. Needless to say we were all relieved but also a very annoyed. This is the type of cat that you can call to you like a dog, so when we found he was just hiding around in the basement we were not to happy.
Because I had to drop my mom off at the metro in the morning AND I had already committed to a 6am Pilates class, I had get up extra early to drop her off for work before I went there. I LOVED the Mat Pilates. I bought a 10 class package on one of those deal websites, and after going to one class I am very happy I bought it. I am semi in shape and while it was not super hard it was definitely a challenge, especially the plank pose. I highly recommend this to anyone who is look for a new workout/wants to work on their core. I will do a more extensive post later once I have been to a few more classes :)

I got a new blog design (as I hope you all noticed!), created for me by the wonderful Alyx over at Everyday is a New Adventure (a blog I happen to love!). If you are in the market for a new blog design, I highly recommend her, she is prompt and very willing to work with you. 

Exciting News! I am going to NYC this weekend to see one of my best friends and explore the city! Follow me on instagram or twitter to come along with me on my adventure! 

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

DaMoim Korean Fusion

Thursday at some point in the morning I managed to run over a nail and get a flat tire. Luckily I had my coworker available to put my spare on (thanks again Stephen!). Friday I dropped my flat off to get fixed and when I came back after work to get it they let me know that it couldn't be fixed and I needed to replace it. I immediately became grumpy because my tires are less then two years old...Luckily I had a warranty so the new tire price was pro-rated.  Needless to say after that I was in a pretty grumpy mood and it was dinner time. I looked at a dining app on my phone and I found a place that got pretty good reviews, DaMoim - a Korean fusion bar.

I live very near a part of Annandale that many people refer to as Little Korea. I am going to admit something to yall, put myself on the line...Korean food intimidates me. I can't quite give a reason why but there is something about it that scares me. I have lived around this area for years and I have never been to a Korean restaurant. Well I take that back, my friend and I went one time to a restaurant, couldnt read the menu and ended up ordering food we were both not fond of. Besides that experience, nada-zilch-no more attempts. 

I decided to stop being such a baby and didn't bail out of going to DaMoim.They had a fusion menu so this is the perfect place to move me in slowly to Korean food.

When I arrived I accidently went into the Karaoke bar next door, which provided for a little awkwardness on my part, but later on after I was leaving DaMoim one of the guys working there recognized me and told me I should come karaoke some time! 
I got to DaMoim, which is small but quaint on the inside. I sat at a high table and drank a coke while I was waiting for my food to come. Little bit of relaxation for me as coke is like my crack. 
Anyways I ordered the 28. Galbi Tacos $9 : Beef Short Rib Tacos served with sesame-chili salsa, a slaw of julienne lettuce and scallions and a sprinkle of crushed sesame seeds. This was delicious and plentiful. More then worth your money for tacos. The beef was flavored awesomely, tender and I really enjoyed my meal. 
For an appetizer I got #2 Mandoo $6, beef and pork traditional Korean dumplings (6) served with soy sesame dipping sauce. I was not a huge fan of these, but it was more of a personal preference thing then a taste thing. I prefer a thicker dumpling layer and slightly different filling. This was another good deal price wise, you get your money's worth. 
Waiters were friendly and food was good, I will definitely be coming back to try some of their other items-very cool menu! My only tiff with this place, and it is a minor one is that they wouldn't let you mix/match the tacos. Most places allow you to switch it up if they are the same price/you are willing to pay the higher price. All three types of tacos here were the same price/portion but they wouldn't allow you to get more then one kind. I suppose it is a good way to get you to come back if you like the tacos. 

7106 Columbia Pike
Annandale, VA
DaMoim on Urbanspoon

After visiting, it has now become my goal to experiment with Korean food more in this area because there is a plethora of restaurants.