Category Archives: drinks

Post-classes: Vacation Day Five (Tallahassee: Graduation, El Tapatio & Kool Beanz)

I graduated! PROOF:

class of 2013

ME

I am now a master of science.

None of us really ate breakfast this morning (as we frantically raced toward the civic center instead), but we did have lunch at El Tapatio, which I enjoyed. Both times I’ve been there I got the carne asada and was not disappointed.

asada

I also tried to show my parents around Lake Ella, but it started raining. We got in a look at some food trucks that happened to be there, as well as the rose garden by the church.

pizza

tacoooos

menu

flowers

The main attraction of the day for me was a well-deserved graduation dinner at Kool Beanz, my favorite Tallahassee spot. My hints: get there early and be prepared to wait. Fortunately we spent time at a local boutique, Cole Couture, while we waited for our table. I also forgot that Kool Beanz always gives you delicious bread and butter before your meal. The bread is so crusty and the butter is so creamy, I could eat the whole basket.

menu

My mom and I each also had a glass of wine.

wine1

wine2

We had the clam appetizer, the spring salad, and the two pasta dishes at the bottom (the crawfish and the scallops/shrimp.) It was ALL amazing but we couldn’t pass up dessert.

clams

le salad

cheesy

mine

Lastly, the dessert menu and our chosen dessert (the smoky bacon brownie!)

desserts

Sorry the picture is dark, it was getting late! This was wonderfully unique and smoky and delicious.

ours

Post & photos by: Melissa

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Post-classes: Vacation Day Three (Atlanta: Aquarium & Silver Skillet & Poor Calvin’s Absolute Fusion)

This morning we got up early and promptly went back to sleep after the alarm woke us up. We headed out to the Silver Skillet, a local diner, for breakfast. Afterward, we went to the Georgia aquarium and we finally ended up eating dinner at Poor Calvin’s Absolute Fusion, which is a Thai/Asian Fusion restaurant.

My mom did both the beluga experience and the whale shark swim. I went around with my dad to ALL the other parts of the Georgia aquarium. But lets start with the breakfast at the Silver Skillet.

Silver skillet

front

menufront

two

three

four

inside

table

I got the sandwich with bacon eggs and cheese, my mom got the ham skillet and my dad got eggs and sausage.

sandwich

ham skillet

egg sausage

We also had biscuits, which were good, and I was SO excited to see this tabletop because it is almost exactly the same as our kitchen counter used to be (our house was built in the 60s.) So I loved it. (those shapes!!)

Next we went to the aquarium.

lionfish

turtle

tanky

seahorse

seahorse 2

jellies

fishes

fin

grouper?

whale shark

penguins

Beluga whales!

beluga

bel

whale

fish

snake

Albino alligator!

albino

two

three

Piranha

fishie

WHALE SHARK!!!!

whaleshark

Behind the scenes: They grow their own coral!

growing coral

more

Sorry Atlanta lovers, as a Seattle fan I’m still a bit upset over the playoffs. 😦

BOO FALCONS

Still a cool dolphin though.

still cool

another

last one

Lastly, we headed over to Poor Calvin’s, and parked by central park.

inside

one

20130502-215652.jpg

Thought I would show the drinks up closer.

drinks

I had the crispy beef, my mom had the unicorn fish, and my dad had the steak. I also ordered the sangria (amazing) and my mom had the “Frankly my dear” cocktail. Both were great, and all the food was too.

We had the calamari as an appetizer.

calamari

steak

fish

beef

sangria

rose cocktail

The staff was really friendly and they also gave us a gift at the end of our meal: a chocolate-covered apple with a 15% off an entree coupon.

dessert

We very much enjoyed our day today and had a much-needed great meal and drink at the end. Glad we didn’t settle for the loud, not-as-great hotel bar. 🙂
If I lived in Atlanta, I think I’d go to Poor Calvin’s to drink as well, seemed like a very nice bar with friendly staff.

Post and photos by: Melissa


Shopping in Ballard & Hale’s Ales (+ Cupcake Royale and Majestic Bay Theater)

Near the end of my time visiting home I went to Ballard with my mom. You will have already seen some of the things we did, but here’s the last post from that time period!

Ballard! We parked near here

My mom and I planned on going to The Hobbit at the Majestic Bay Theater in Ballard. This is a small (though 3-story) locally owned theater which has nice, big screens, comfy seats, and no annoying ads at the beginning of the showings (which I appreciated). We had a lot of time (though not too much) before the movie, so we went to a few of the shops around the area and I took pictures at one, which was called Lucca.
They had some really cute things that I thought I would share here, although I can hardly summarize the number of things in the store. This is just a sampling.

Then I thought I would share the two interior nighttime pictures I took of the theater.

And, while we split a cupcake we didn’t eat it right away. But we did buy it before dinner, right next door to the theater at Cupcake Royale which was luckily open till 10 pm!

We split this one:

Then we finished the night at Hale’s Ales.

We ordered the fish & chips to split. The fries are under the fish.

Then we each ordered a beer, my mom got 2 of the 5-oz tasters whereas I just got a pint of one kind. We did each try all 3 beers though. First, the drink menu:

So here are the beers we tried:

El Jefe

El Jefe and Kolsch

And I’m 90% sure that the last one was the “visiting” Double Mountain India Red Ale.

We all preferred the two tasters, but I thought El Jefe was alright as well. Just not my favorite. As far as beer goes, though, I liked all of these and my favorite was the Kolsch. Which isn’t seasonal, so I guess that’s a good thing. Overall we had a good time in Ballard and I’d definitely come back to Hale’s. We sat in the bar and everything was great; it might be fun to come here just for drinks sometime.

Post by: Melissa
Photos by: Melissa


Orlando Adventure Day 2: Shopping, Thai food, & going out

On Saturday, we headed to an outlet mall for some shopping and picked up a few things, then to the Florida Mall which I can say is the best mall I’ve ever been to despite the fact that there were SO many people. But it was Veteran’s Day weekend and I guess I can understand that. My favorite store we went to was H&M (Id been missing that.) In between the shopping trips we stopped at Sea Thai for lunch. The SEA in SEA Thai stands for South East Asia, in case you were wondering.

This was such a cute little restaurant, and looked really nice inside as well. You can get a glimpse of the restaurant here:

And here’s a look at the menu:

We both ordered the Thai iced tea, and it was so good! Very sweet.

I also ordered an appetizer: spring rolls! I always love these. It came with 3 spring rolls, but I was so excited I couldn’t help myself and forgot to take a picture first. 😦
Note the cute little shot glass full of a sweet dipping sauce.

I went for the Thai fried rice with chicken (naturally…)

My friend got the beef pad Thai.

The food was very good, and my only complaint was that we weren’t asked how spicy we wanted our dishes, so it ended up being a little too mild. I tried to fix this with hot sauce. My friend would have liked more noodles with her pad Thai, (as it was a little low on the noodle: beef ratio) but overall it was a great, affordable lunch.

After lunch, we headed downtown to walk around. We stopped by Lake Eola and it was such a nice, large lake and park for downtown.

We also had to visit the library, because of course I’m trying to be a librarian and it’s the largest public library in Florida!

There were some interesting displays in glass cases, here is my favorite (probably because of the white rabbit):

We also stopped into the library’s bookstore, where I found a book by one of my favorite authors for only $1. As a bonus, I haven’t read this one yet:

For dinner, we had some leftovers and food at home, before going out for drinks downtown. There was a $5 cover for an area with multiple bars and we started our night at the Other Bar with a late night stop at Jimmy John’s (where I had never been, though now I’ve tasted their bread.) One of the bars we stopped into offered a large variety of craft beers, and I took a very dark picture of the wall menu:

You can so almost read that, right? Thought so. Here’s a blurry beer to cheer you up and put into perspective how dark it was:

Overall a very nice day with some great shopping finds and a fun Saturday night out. Next, Day 3:Disney World!

Post by: Melissa
Photos by: Melissa


More ATLANTA! (world of coke, road trip continuation)

After (quite?) a few days off from this business of putting up road trip blogs, I have decided to return to ATL with my experience at WORLD OF COKE. Which I like to call Coke Land. Ahem.

It has been a busy-feeling first couple of days at school but if I don’t do this now I don’t know when I will get these up and be able to continue with a few things I’ve done around Tallahassee. So here we gooooooo~

We arrived at World of Coke a little later in the day after visiting the Atlanta Botanical Gardens (which I still have more pictures from but will probably save because that post was just getting too long, unless you want to see them?)

Welcome to World of Coke!

When you first go in, those are the things you see, and there is a brief introduction followed by a video specially made for WORLD OF COCA COLA which encourages you to exercise, eat healthy, and drink coke in order to be happy in life.

Now, a bit of Coke history.

And here it is! What you’ve all been waiting for.. or at least what I was waiting for the whole time I was there. Unlimited soda-drinking till you feel full and sick and just want to leave. But it was great. 🙂

Coke supplied various four-sided tasting stations representing the different continent(ish) areas where different coke products are sold, all leading up to the MOST DELICIOUS COKE OF ALL. Original coke. ❤

But first, a little snapshot of the only Florida-related thing I found there:

Yay! And now, the tasting room!

My mom really liked the melon “Bibo”, which tastes like honeydew. I liked the yellow one which is just kind of tropical.

Now, you may ask, why such a focus on Beverly? I have never tasted a drink that I liked less than this. We thought it tasted like milky, watery, soapy sprite. I immediately had to go get a big drink of orange soda to get the taste out of my mouth. So if you know anyone who likes this, or anyone from Italy or who has tried this in some other fashion, please ask them, WHY?

I do not, for the life of me, know why they had doubles of some things for the same region. But I do know that they could not trick me into trying Inca Kola twice. Bleh. It was yellow. I was expecting traditional cola, but I guess they did warn me by spelling it with a K.

Now onto the coke!

And that seems like a good place to end it, with the free coke (included in your admission price) that you reach in a hole to grab from a rotating circle of coke bottles. 🙂

Post by: Melissa
Photos by: Melissa


road trip day four

We started out our day in Rapid City, SD and headed to Mount Rushmore early-ish in the morning after a continental breakfast ended our stay at big sky lodge. Got some pictures there…

Then we headed off through South Dakota toward South Sioux City, Nebraska, where we decided to stay for the evening. More on that later. First we went to Murdo for lunch at the Star Family Restaurant. I had the chicken tenders and mom had the ham and cheese sandwich + broccoli cheddar soup. Everything was great. 🙂

Then we headed off to Nebraska, though a tiny bit of Iowa, and ended up staying at the Marina Convention Center, right on the Missouri River. It’s gorgeous here! We settled in a bit late so we decided to eat at the restaurant and it was a great idea! The restaurant here is called Kahill’s Steak-Fish-Chophouse and this was definitely the best meal I’ve had out in a while, as much as I loved our food in Bozeman.

We had the lamb (on the right side of the menu above) and it was amazing, along with the risotto and carrots, as well as the mushrooms. Our appetizer of a split spinach salad and bread was amazing as well, (asiago cheese bread, my favorite!) The salad had craisins(spelling?), carmelized red onion, bacon, spinach, and a light vinaigrette. My mom had the black cherry cosmo and I had a key lime pie martini, which were both very nicely done.

Then we splurged on the dessert. We had the peach option (as listed below) and it was just the perfect amount of sweet and soft and crunchy and perfect overall. Such a good choice. We only regret not being able to try more desserts!

Signing off in South Sioux City. Goodnight!

Post by: Melissa
Photos by: Melissa


Bite of Seattle 2012 (Saturday)

I went to Bite of Seattle today with my mom. I haven’t been there in several years, but today was sunny and I had lots of fun. There were performances on stage:

Initially we looked around…

Then we headed over to the Alley and the wine tasting. The Alley is a $10 donation to food lifeline (per plate) that gets you food from 7 restaurants. We also shared in one wine tasting for the $12 happy hour price, which included 5 tastings and a commemorative glass.

Here is the plate of food:

The food includes (according to Saturday’s Alley menu):

Palace Kitchen: Flat iron steak with tomato salad and blueberry vinaigrette (bottom middle)

Al Boccalino: Bruchetta con la muffoletta (bottom right)

Belltown Pub: Semmelknoedel – German bread dumplings made with rye bread, parsley, onions and garlic (middle)

Salty’s: Mini salmon brat with fennel sauerkraut and Walla Walla onion mustard served in a house made Brioche bun (bottom left)

Fremont Fire Pit: Pulled Pork sliders (top right)

Din Tai Fung: Taiwan’s famous, hand-made, steamed pork dumplings filled with soup (top middle)

Pinkabella Cupcakes: Strawberry mini cupcake (top left)

We got the food from these  food stands:

More to come (ran out of time) on the non-food side of things, and more on the seeing-Seattle side of things!

We also enjoyed some free samples (of many random things like sweeteners, etc.) There was also a free So Delicious brand fudgesicle-type dessert made from coconut milk and free applesauce and peanut butter. We also tried Amy’s organic rice macaroni and cheese, and some Santa Cruz organic lemonade.

I will leave you with PUNK ROCK AEROBICS. Something that reminds me of Seattle.

Post by: Melissa
Photos by: Melissa