Saturday, November 13, 2010
People who has lived in New York in the past 20 years have to know about the notorious "The Limelight".
A Gothic Revival Brownstone Church built in 1840's was converted to a night club in the 1990's.
The night club was synonymous with drugs, shut down by the police, changed owner, and closed again.
I never made it to the club, but I did check out the new Limelight Marketplace that just opened this summer.
The gourmet food shops definitely are the main attractions here.
Even though the interior was hip and trendy, you could still see it's religious past.
How dreamy was this?
House of Worship -- if shopping is your religion.
So, I guess this is an angel then?
Another reminder of its past.
When I visited a few months back, portions of the Marketplace was still under construction.
Because of it's architectural design, it could feel like going through a maze.navigating the place.
But it definitely enhance the whole experience of shopping in a church.
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Our wedding anniversary was on a school night,
and the night before I just went to "One if by Land, Two if by sea" for dinner.
So, we decided to go local and check out Meson Asturia in our neighborhood.
For me, Spanish cuisine can do no wrong.
I especially love these old school Spanish restaurants.
Morcilla asturiana -- Blood Sausage
I tried blood sausage many times before and was never a fan of its flavor and texture.
However, I actually liked this one!
It did not have the chewy texture that I was scared of,
and it was prepared with a lot seasoning that made the sausage quite flavorful.
(code: the seasoning covered the gamy blood taste nicely)
Seafood & Lobster Paella
One of my all-time favorite Spanish dish.
H thought that the rice was one of the best he had ever tried.
Pargo asado o frito -- Broiled red snapper
The fish was okay, perhaps the fried one would taste better.
The pathetic vegetable side looked like it just came right out of a can, not very appetizing.
Flan -- Classic Spanish dessert
We were originally shocked when the waiter presented the dessert.
The color just threw us off and of course, the child-like whip cream presentation totally did not help.
However, we were pleasantly surprised!
The flan had an interesting citrusy icing on top,
and the rest of the flan was creamy and milky that tasted like creme brulee.
Meson Asturia has its own charm.
The servers are attentive and the ambiance was unpretentious.
The restaurant also has live flamenco performance on Saturday night.
It is definitely a great neighborhood restaurant that I will be glad to return.
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
On this particular weekend, I was feeling nostalgic towards Manhattan.
We decided to hit the Lower East Side on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.
Baohaus is a small eatery that only offer Taiwanese style burgers.
I have heard about it, but never bothered to check it out.
Since we accidentally wandered to this place, we had to try it.
It is a common street food in Taiwan, and is called "Gua Bao".
The traditional Gua Bao uses slow cooked pork belly as the key ingredient.
Although a smaller portion, I was really impressed with Baohaus' Gua Bao.
It was very authentic and well prepared.
After the Taiwanese appetizer, we were hungry and ready to eat.
It was either Latin American cuisine or British Gastro food, and Latin American won tonight.
A Casa Fox was our main destination.
We love early dinners and being the only fews in quiet restaurants.
I really liked this pickled cabbage salad with the crunchy texture.
Mini Empanada samples
Among six different flavors, I love herbal chicken & olive, Portabello Mushroom & Smoked Guoda, and Queso Blanco.
Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Cilantro and Lime
On the left: Risotto Croquettes with Tocino + Queso
On the right: Red Pepper Crab Cakes with Chipotle Mayonnaise.
The risotto cro
Over the dinner, H mentioned that he has not been to Cafe Katja for a long time.
We decided to go there for beers & desserts.
Cafe Katja is an Austrian cafe that serves excellent food and drinks.
H especially likes to come here for a drink and talk German with the friendly owner & servers.
Forgot what beer it was....
Named after the city Linz, Austria, Linzer torte is the oldest known torte in the world.
It is made of hazelnut and red current jam.
I love the schlag (German word for whip cream). It is not your usual fluffy whip cream.
It is dense and rich with so much more substance.
It was such an spontaneous evening.
I loved hitting all these places and had small bites here and there.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
H is full of surprises these days.
Another unexpected short getaway planned by him,
Rhineback is a little more than two hour drive from New York City
He felt bad for talking me out of the antique airplane ride last time in Cape Cod,
and wanted to make it up to me by taking me to Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome.
It was windy when we arrived, and the planes had just stopped flying an hour before.
We still bought the tickets and hoped that the wind condition would be better later in the day.
we walked around the quint little village of Rhinback & Red Hook.
For the full Americana experience, we went to The "Historic" Village Diner for lunch.
The roadside diner was intact from it's manufacturing in 1920's.
We enjoyed the food as much as we enjoyed the ambiance.
The wind was getting stronger after lunch, but we did not want to give up just yet.
More strolling in town to pass time.
Finally at 3 PM, the flights of the day were all canceled.
So it seems H still owes me a ride.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
I met a friend for dinner at one of the most romantic restaurants in New York.
The main dinning room is elegant with dazzling chandeliers.
The upstair dinning room is simpler with an old time charm.
Chef's appetizer: Beet salad with goat cheese.
I always love the gesture of a chef's dish, no matter how small or simple it is.
It just makes me feel like a special customer.
Tomato gazpacho: plum tomato, basil, dill, 50-year aged balsamic vinegar, virgin olive oil
Sweet, creamy, and fresh.
Haricot vert salad - grape heirloom tomatoes, goat cheese, slithered almonds, basil, sherry vinaigrette
Grilled bavette steak - roasted radishes, fingerling potatoes, braised red cabbage, beef
Almond milk panna cotta with sable breton: fresh strawberries, strawberry sorbet
It was so silky and just melt in your mouth. I absolutely loved it!
Mascarpone cheesecake: huckeberry foam, huckleberry streusel, mixed berry compote, berry sauce.
The restaurant was so romantic that i thought using the flashlight would be way to intrusive.
That is why the pictures came out blurry.
One if by Land, Two if by sea is a restaurant reserved for date nights and special occasions.
Get a table in the main dining room if you can. It feels pretty magical.
Saturday, October 9, 2010
As someone who is a bit of OCD when it comes to travel,
I am usually the one planning the trips in the family.
This year, I am running out of steam and rather uninspired in traveling.
This was a surprise weekend trip that H planned for my Birthday.
I had no idea where I was going until we were on the road.
Since there was no expectation of the trip, I just relaxed and enjoyed whatever came my way.
After we checked into the hotel, we drove up to Provincetown for seafood dinner.
Lobster Pot has a great review, and many tourists come to this restaurant.
However, I am not sure how you can steam lobsters better or worse.
We quickly realized that Provincetown is a very gay & lesbian friendly place.
After dinner, we took a stroll, checked out some interesting shops,
and watched the sunset by the shore.
After the movie at the drive-in Theatre, we called it a night and headed back to the hotel.
The next day, we missed the boat ride to Martha's Vinyard.
It's okay - no expectations, no disappointments.
Antique shopping instead.
We passed by an antique airplane Anredrome. I wanted to take a ride with this beautiful airplane.
H was still traumatized from the last private plane that we took with his friend a few years back,
and refused to go on the plane. UGH... bummer!
We had lobster again for dinner at the nearby restaurant.
I needed some exercises after dinner, and wanted to play the miniature golf on the way back to the hotel.
The miniature golf course was packed with families. We decided to hit some balls on the golf range instead.
We went swimming in the pool the next morning,
and picked up the lamps we bought from an antique shop before heading back home.