Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Pinkberry Frozen Yogurt

One of the few things I never get tired of is Frozen Yogurt...or a much hated/loved term of FroYo. Pinkberry was on of the first frozen yogurt places to hit the Northern Virginia area and it has started quite a trend. From my first moment of trying this, I was addicted. The addiction has gotten worse of the years and now I constantly crave the frozen yogurty goodness. Luckily froyo places are popping up everywhere with lots of fun flavors. 

Back to Pinkberry. I firmly believe that this is one of the best quality frozen yogurt places in the area. All of their flavors are delicious and their toppings are of great quality-always fresh fruit. 

A new cool thing, Pinkberry also serves savory yogurt options now. Can't find the info on their website, but the Fairfax Corner location has this option.

My mom got the Chocolate Yogurt with assorted chocolate toppings. Very tasty.
 I got my typical order of Original (but I tried samples of the green tea and mango...both yummy!) with fruit, almonds, dark chocolate nibs and hazelnut things. So GOOD.
 The feature fewer flavors then other froyo places but they make sure each flavor is quality.
 Toppings bar. You can have as many that fit into your cup.
Pinkberry will always have a special place in my heart. People often complain about the prices being higher, but you are paying for quality-no artificial flavors here (and probably a little bit of trendy too...) but it is worth every cent.

Stay tuned, I will be doing a Best of Frozen Yogurt in the NOVA area :) I've been to most of the places in the area, but I haven't blogged about them all yet. 

11942 Grand Commons Ave
Fairfax, VA
Fairfax Corner
Pinkberry on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Nutella Hot Cocoa

Nutella Hot Cocoa. Enough said. I'd like to thank Jasmine for this wonderful idea. I saw this on her blog the other day, it was cold and I was sick so I thought this would be the perfect thing to make. And it was, it so was. This is going to be a staple throughout the cold winter. Much better then any packaged mix.

Nutella Hot Cocoa

Ingredients serves 2-3
1/3 Cup Nutella
3 Cups Milk

1. Heat milk over medium heat on the stove. 
2. Once the milk begins to warm up, whisk nutella in and then heat to your desired warmth. 
3. Serve, sit back and enjoy. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Funfetti Cake Waffles

There have been a lag of blog posts lately because every time I try and upload photos, blogger tells me I have reached my capacity and I need to buy more space in order to upload. It doesn't seem like anyone else is having this problem so I am trying to figure out if it is my computer??

Anyways, I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving Break, the first half of mine was great (I'd post photos...but it wont let me), but I have been sick since Sunday and I had to call off work today :(
But enough about me and my problems and more about these delicious Funfetti Cake Waffles. A wonderful dessert or special breakfast, these are awesome for any time. The first time I made these, I put them in baggies and ate them throughout the week for breakfast. Not super healthy, but it made for a great start to my mornings :) You could make these with any cake mix, but I have a particular fondness for funfetti!

Funfetti Cake Waffles
1 box of cake mix
3 eggs
1 1/3 cups water
1/3 oil (vegetable, canola, etc)
optional: whipped cream, sprinkles, butter, chocolate sauce, etc
1. Plug in and heat up your waffle maker. 
2. Mix all of the above ingredients in a bowl. 
3. Put batter in waffle maker (whatever amount your particular waffle maker suggests) and cook for suggested time your waffle maker starts, mine has a light that tells me when it is done. 
4. Serve with toppings (optional:whipped cream, butter, syrup, chocolate, etc)

It's that easy and it's a fun change from your typical waffle or cake! Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Lebanese Taverna DC Remodel Reveal Party

Last week I was invited to the reveal party to show off the remodel of the Lebanese Taverna in Washington DC (Woodley Park).

After checking in, Carrie and I headed straight to the bar to get a drink (per usual). They had 2 specially cocktails available: 1001 Nights Martini vodka, passion fruit & The Phoenician Martini vodka, pomegranate seeds, pomegranate juice. Both were good but I don't like vodka. They also served white & red sangria, assorted beers and red & white wines. Their red sangria was amazing. 
At the bar they had grape favorite.
There were a ton of appetizers passed around. My favorite was the spinach pie also known as FATAYER B`SBANIGH. They also had a dessert bar and a few more things not shown below. 
A HUMMUS bar....freaking amazing. How cute were the little cocktail glasses filled with hummus? Plenty of toppings available to appease everybody.
And of course...the reason we were there...the remodel. I have never been to this particular location so I don't know what it looked like before but I can say that it looks amazing now. I absolutely love the interior, it is a perfect place to catch up with a friend, go on a date or go to happy hour after work. 
 The open space in the middle will have tables during regular dining hours. 
 I NEED to sit in this booth next time I come here. I have a love affair with booth seats. 
This was an wonderful night, Mondays will just never be the same for me (event was on a Monday night). Everyone was ridiculously nice, we got to meet a lot of the family that owns the Lebanese Taverna which was really cool. They took the time to go around and meet everyone that was there. The employees were also really nice, Carrie and I made friends with them so everytime that had the spinach pies, they made sure to come around to us :)

I already knew I loved the food, I've been going here for the past ~10 years but finding out the people behind the restaurant were so nice was awesome. Next time you go, get the Lamb's my fav dish :)

They also gave an awesome gift bag, I am really excited to try the olive oil & zaatar spice :)
2641 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC
Woodley Park
Lebanese Taverna on Urbanspoon

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Ray's to the Third

another iphone photo post, this was an impromto meal :)

The other day Lili kidnapped me to go to dinner with her and Rommie at Ray's to the Third. Being that I am always down for a burger, I didn't put up too much of a protest ;) 

Ray's to the Third is a fancier version of Ray's Hell Burger. They sell burgers as combos as well as having whole bunch of different entrees available and it's a sit down and be served environment.

All diners are served some bread before their meal which was not very good.
I got the New Jack Zing $12.99 Blackened Burger, Pepper Jack Cheese, Grilled Onions, Charred Jalapenos, Roasted Garlic with a side of pirhanna sauce. Love the flavors of this burger.
 Lili got a make your own burger with tater tots. Great tots!
Rommie ordered the "Nice and Greasy, Steak and Cheesy" over stuffed sandwich. He enjoyed it.
This meal wasn't bad, but it wasn't really good either. The cheese on our burgers wasn't even melted, which is crucial for a good burger. In my experience with the Ray's Restaurants, they are either phenomenal or average, which I have found correlates with how busy they are. Going during off hours and you should get a baller burger..or you know, just be the President of the USA :)

1650 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA
Ray's To the Third on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Buenos Grill in Annandale

A couple months ago I saw construction on a restaurant right by my house and I got pretty excited because the only thing near me food wise is Korean Food, Subway, Quiznos and fast food. Everything else is like a 10 minute drive away (which I suppose isn't too bad, but this is NOVA, we like convenience).

Buenos Grill finally opened on Halloween, and I decided to wait a couple of weeks (2) before I went so they had time to get their kinks out (if they had any).

The set up is similar to any of the Chipotle like chains.
Cousin got a burrito bowl
Other one got a single chicken taco & a kid's quesadilla
Uncle ordered the chicken tacos.
And I ordered the 3 tacos, one with chicken, steak and barbacoa. 
& a side of Guacamole
Overall this place was ok. The meat was average, my favorite was the barbacoa because it had the most flavor. Nothing about this place was bad, but unfortunately nothing about this place was really good either. 

Similar restaurants like Chipotle, Moe's & Qdoba all have something about it that makes them stand out, while I didn't really witness anything here (amazing/fresh/flavorful ingredients,  free chips + salsa bar, AMAZING queso). They apparently have appetizers that you can order during the dinner hours, but you don't really come to this type of place and order appetizers. 
This place is appealing to kids, my extremely picky cousins love it so I know my uncle will be taking them back because it is so close. I on the other hand will drive the 10-15 extra minutes to Chipotle or Qdoba if I am in the mood for this type of food.

While I personally don't enjoy the place, I forsee it doing well in this area because of they are the only type of "quick bite" in this area that is not fast food or subway. 

7023 Columbia Pike
AnnandaleVA 22003
(703) 623-6854
Buenos Grill on Urbanspoon

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Gin Palace in East Village

While in NYC killing time before dinner, some friends and I decided to go to Gin Palace in East Village-a speakeasy like place. 

We got there a little before 6PM (opening time) and were a bit confused. Dani had been here before and knew we were in the right place but we couldn't quite figure out what was going on (see photo below).
After standing on the corner for a few minutes someone came out and the gates started to open revealing this! 
Dani ordered Uzi Tenenbaum $10 beefeater gin, ginger syrup, zucca, lemon, soda. She enjoyed her drink and I thought it was decent (not a big gin fan here).
I ordered an "Old Maid" $10 gin, lime, simple syrup, cucumber, mint. This was a delicious refreshing drink-loved it even though I don't really like gin that much. No effect on the taste, but a cool feature if you look closely at the photo you can see a big chunk of ice instead of lots of small pieces.  
We decided to order another round of drinks. Police and Thieves $10 gin, pineapple juice, lime juice, grapefruit juice, cinnamon was really good.  The cinnamon was a welcome addition. I don't remember the other drink but it was not as tasty.
The interior is dark, but really cool-I wish I took more photos (great photos here). We were the only ones there since we were so early

This was a fun place. Not being a huge fan of gin, I really enjoyed a few of their drinks. Gin Palace's interior was awesome however, I couldn't find myself here on a crowded night enjoying it.

95 Avenue A
New York, NY
Gin Palace on Urbanspoon

Friday, November 9, 2012

Friday Finds

Hey all! Yay for Friday. Finally a Finds that is not related to Trader Joe's (but let's be real, who doesn't love them-self some TJ's?)

Ok, this edition is a little weak. Realized that all my new finds are mostly Trader Joe's related...I have a problem :) But next week will be packed full of fun & new things! 

Chobani Flip Vanilla Chocolate Chip Low-Fat Yogurt with Rasberry. This was ok, but it was way to sweet for my personal tastes-I have gotten way to used to Greek Yogurt to go back to normal yogurt. 
Endangered Species Chocolate Dark Chocolate with Espresso Beans. If you like dark chocolate & espresso, this is the bar for you.
Pop Chips Chili Limon tortilla chips. Not bad, but I am not a huge fan for it being a replacement for tortilla chips. I can get on the whole pop chips train, but I can't accept the tortilla chips. If I am going to eat tortilla chips, I want the real deal.

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Have you tried any new products lately that you just love?