Sunday, September 21, 2014

DressV Collaboration: Women's Evening Dresses

So excited to be chosen to work with the DressV collection! They specialize in women's evening dresses, and also offer really affordable jewelry, handbags, and shoes. 

Women's Evening Dresses

Here's a sneak peak of some of the unbelievable gowns they have:

It makes me want to go to a special occasion, just so I can have an excuse to wear one of these!

Seriously can't wait to show you my pieces. Until then, I'll dream about ballgowns and fancy soirees!

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Saturday, September 20, 2014

A GILT-Free Italian Dinner at Coppa in Boston's South End

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

Summer dress by Tobi, tote by Target,
flip flops by Old Navy, wooden wayfarers by San Franpsycho

The other night, we went to the famed Coppa in Boston's South End. Nick found a great Gilt City deal for the venue, and we set out to try this Italian enoteca! 

While en route to dinner, we saw the cutest Rabbit & the Hare statues in Copley Square. Love this story & had to snap a shot with this adorable little guy.

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

We sat out on the patio to soak up the summer rays before the sun set. I loved the bright colors and how the patio sat on a street corner - great for people watching!

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

We started with the Ostriche - oysters escabeche with rhubarb verjus (and that's just the stuzzichini, or Italian small bar snack)!

These oysters were so good - and very different than any I had tried in the past. The rhubarb gave them a more rustic, earthy flavor that you don't usually get from oysters. It was a pleasant change and complemented the briny flavors nicely.

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

For our antipasti, we ordered these amazing Fried Fontina Bites in tomato gravy. They were perfectly crisp on the outside, and filled with warm melted fontina cheese inside. So tasty!

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

I've recently learned that I prefer white wine to red - it doesn't make me so sleepy (red wine will knock me out), and it doesn't leave me with a headache - which is much appreciated!

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

Our second antipasti was another unique dish: The Squash-Stuffed Cod, with peppers, cucumber, zucchini and squash. That's right, this incredible dish came with a cod stuffed with seasonal squash! 

It was absolutely scrumptious, as the subtle flavors of each complemented one another nicely. I loved the colorful presentation as well!

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

We ordered a Seafood Pasta, which came with mussels, green peas, and sea urchin (you can see it there in the bright orange color)! I was excited to try the urchin, since I had never had it before and always love trying new bites. 

Despite my excitement, I wasn't a fan of the texture or consistency of the sea urchin. The creature's skin is not smooth, but bumpy with tons of ridges, and it melts in your mouth in a strange way - it's hard to describe, but I don't think it's for me.

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

Look how healthy! For our last dinner plate, we ordered the Parma Woodfired Pizza, which came with tomato sauce, plenty of arugula and prosciutto di parma (it's there under all those greens). 

This was a delicious savory end to our meal, but I must warn you: Do not order this pizza if you have an aversion to salt! The prosciutto was extremely salty, even with all that arugula as a buffer. It was scrumptious nonetheless.

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

There's always room for dessert! Our Coppa meal was so good, we ordered this dessert dish that everyone from staff to fellow diners were raving about. Meet the Sciocchezza: A layered concoction of Sake soaked chocolate cake, miso dolce de leche, and cashew-sesame crumble all served in a mason jar. Simply devine!

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

Walking off that Italian goodness, we stumbled upon this amazing community art project outside of the Beehive (another great South End restaurant on my list)! 

The setup consisted of 3 ping-pong tables melded as one, and hooked up to a speaker system which echoed each time a ball hit the table. How fun is that??

Best Italian Boston Dinner Coppa South End

Comment Challenge: I love trying new foods! What's the "weirdest" food you've ever tried? 

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Friday, September 19, 2014

SF Rooftop Bar: El Techo de Lolinda

This past weekend, I made a brief trip home to San Francisco for a wedding. While there, some friends and I met up at El Techo de Lolinda, a trendy rooftop bar for dinner! El Techo is known for its Latin American street food and great SF views.

See the fog bank rolling in? It actually just stopped right there and never came all the way down to us, so we got a great view! 

Love the small details, like this El Pato salsa de chile fresco-turned-napkin & silverware holder! It gives a more authentic, rustic feel to the Latin American restaurant.

One of my favorite things about El Techo is that they offer Mexican Coca-Cola. For those who don't know, Mexican Coca-Cola is made with real, natural cane sugar instead of factory-processed sugar. I much prefer the flavor to American Coke. 

Here you see my Cuba Libre, with  rhum, lime & Mexican Coca-Cola, alongside a (very strong!) Margarita.

Chips, guacamole & tons of salt to start. I kind of went around the salt, but the guac was great!

Our first dish was the Sopes de Pibil, which came with braised pork, black beans, guacamole, red onion, chipotle-honey, and tortilla. They may seem tiny, but they were absolutely jam-packed with flavor! The pork and guacamole is a combo for the ages.

Next, we enjoyed the Quesadilla de Pibil, with braised pork shoulder, oaxaca cheese, and salsa on the side. In case you're wondering - Yes, El Techo has more than pibil on the menu. We just happened to pick these dishes that are all about the braised pork!

The quesadillas were stuffed to the brim with pibil and oaxaza cheese, and the salsa was amazing! A little sweet, a bit of a kick, and it complemented the dish perfectly.

Last, but clearly not least, we dined on the half pound Chicharrones de Carne! This plate came with roasted and fried chunks of pork-shoulder with house made tortillas, lime, salsa, black beans, and escabech. 

It was a filling an delicious end to this Latin American meal. 

You can still see the view & fog bank once the sun had set!

Comment Challenge: I love branching out. What's your favorite non-American dish?

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