With what limited time and funds I have to spare, I’m having to be a little more careful about how I spend both. As much as I would like to, I can’t go to every new little shop or corner cafe and take pictures and drink lattes all day. I make careful choices about where to go in Atlanta and sometimes that leads me to sticking with the good ole faves. Other times, my cool friends take me to low key spots like Dish Dive and remind me that there’s still some awesomeness to be found.
Didn’t know much about this place, but immediately liked what was going on when I pulled up… namely, nothing. I met my friend Elizabeth for weekday dinner at 6:30 which makes for a pretty quiet restaurant, but the perfect time to linger and not annoy patrons awaiting a table or a bartender who wants to turn a tab (Dish Dive is BYOB btw).
We sat at the bar in the rear of the room which puts you right in the middle of the action, as if pulling up a chair to the kitchen island at a friend’s house party. Best seat in the house, right? The only real dilemma in this whole experience was picking our dishes. We ended up going with dive fries, braised pork belly, tagliatelle, roasted squash, and mom’s homemade cheesecake.
The squash was a surprising highlight…
Ah, the Georgia Aquarium. Who doesn’t love aquariums? They allow you a glimpse into a whole other world beneath the surface of the water; the glass that stands between you and the ocean life only amplifies your sense of wonderment.
I don’t get to visit the Georgia Aquarium that often so when they invited me to their media preview of the new sea lion exhibit, I was pretty excited. If you think the GA Aquarium is awesome, let me tell you that it’s 100x better at night when no one is around and there are free cocktails and food. It was so quiet in comparison to daytime that it felt all the more like you were underwater observing.
Now onto the fun stuff. We saw the first go at their new Sea Lion show and oh my gosh. They’re so amazing. These sea lions are rescues from California and pretty much your new best friends. If you feel like you have an inkling of wanting to work with animals, these guys will seal the deal for you (see what I did there)!
In addition to the new sea lion exhibit, Georgia Aquarium has revamped the Dolphin show. I’ll be completely honest with you… I’ve hated the dolphin show in the past.
I’ve always wanted to entertain the idea of a CSA but the convenience and ease of the chain grocery store often gets the better of me. So when Fresh Harvest contacted me to try one of their weekly baskets, I said YES without hesitation. Fresh Harvest is pretty simply this: a box of local organically farmed produce dropped off at your front door. You can’t say anything is easier than that!
My first impressions were as follows:
- I love Batdorf coffee (not pictured, I already took it out of the basket)! They know me already.
- That’s a whole lot of greens (there were more sprouts I had already taken out of the basket too).
- What do I do with raw sugar cane?
- And whoa bananas.
I probably should have planned a little bit better for how I was going to use all this produce, but I was just kind of overwhelmed and excited by having such a great basket that I went wild and did whatever came to my head first. I figured the best thing I could make was something I already felt comfortable making – a veggie stir-fry. That way the ingredients would still shine and I could use a lot of them at once.
For my stir-fries I try to keep things simple and let the ingredients shine. I was able to use the broccoli (fresh broccoli = infinitely better than frozen), swiss chard, radish, and carrots. It turned out pretty swell, indeed much better than my typical stir-fry. It felt like there was an extra crunch and a rounder flavor to it all.
As for the rest of the basket, I did my best to use what I could as soon as I could. Ben and I are only two people so we couldn’t manage to finish the bananas and mandarin oranges while they were in their prime. I used the mushroom in a noodle dish I cooked later in the week and it took everything to a whole new level; the noticeable difference a single mushroom can make has really opened up my eyes to cooking with mushrooms in general.
Overall, I truly enjoyed my Fresh Harvest basket. The element of surprise and challenge in using specific ingredients is quite delightful, as if I was on a week-long challenge of Chopped (with a much easier basket). I only wish I could have the basket last a little longer. Of course, this was just a free trial run and if I were to begin a weekly subscription then I could tailor things to my logistical needs. Fresh Harvest also has co-op and workplace options as well, so you really can’t go wrong with these guys.
If you’ve never tried a produce delivery service – or even if you already have before – I highly recommend Fresh Harvest. It will force you to be much more mindful of how you use your produce and what you put into your body. Not to mention, support local!
Never thought I’d ever say this, but I think there might be more great coffee places in Atlanta than I can handle. They’re actually sprinkled throughout the whole city except, unfortunately, in my own neighborhood (although I think Press & Grind’s opening might have fixed that). I guess the universe decided to make it up to me with four amazing spots right by my workplace, one of those being Revelator‘s Atlanta Westside location.
Feels like just yesterday they opened up (it was actually June of last year I think) because it does feel so fresh and bright in the space. It’s a stone’s throw away from my workplace and just when I think it couldn’t get better – they’ve just debuted a menu of small seasonal food offerings.
I think the thing that pushes Revelator towards the top of the list for me is their genuine hospitality. Every barista who works there welcomes me warmly and treats me like an old friend. Some of you may not like that sort of immediate connection, but I appreciate it especially since it’s the same way I like to connect with others as well.
The new food offerings feature small plates that are oh-so-perfectly lunch-sized. They are fairly priced and come with a little side salad as well! The ham and radish baguette sandwich I had was deeelish as was my friend’s avocado toast with lava salt. It looks like their menu is going to rotate depending on what’s available but I’ve already got my eye on this week’s menu.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the delicious lattes that accompanied our meal. They were flavored with a honey cinnamon syrup that made them taste like a Teddy Graham. So from now on I will want a Teddy Graham latte at Revelator. Does all of this not sound like the best thing for your midday break?
All too often art exhibitions will pass through this city before we get the chance to experience them. I know I’m guilty of missing out on some pretty incredible collections just because I let it slip my mind. But let me do you a favor and remind you of one you should make a priority before it vanishes! This past November, Iris Van Herpen’s Transforming Fashion opened at The High Museum in Atlanta and I was honored to be invited to a media preview and walk-through with the designer herself. The exhibition will be open until May 15th, 2016 so you’ve still got a few months to check it out (spoilers below)! Without further ado, here’s a peek at Iris’ innovative designs:
Transforming Fashion marks the first museum exhibition of Van Herpen’s collections in the US. In addition, this also is the first ever exhibition at the High to feature fashion design. It’s the single form of art that I think almost any one can relate to. We interact with fashion every day in the sense that what we choose to wear is the image we choose to present to the outside world. So we find it much easier to feel a certain way about a piece of clothing than we do about a performance piece or an abstract sculpture.But of course, this is not your everyday button-down and jeans. The pieces in the exhibition come from the entire range of Van Herpen’s collections, each inspired by a different element of the world (but I guess you could say that would be anything). From materials like water and metal to chemical phenomena like magnetism and smoke, her designs are as familiar as they are foreign. I don’t envision myself actually wearing these things, much the same way I don’t envision all art I admire being the art I put in my home. They’re a statement. A meditation on the relationship we have with our world, making the invisible visible.
This post is sponsored by The High Museum of Art; however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
It’s been high time that I try some of the new spots round Atlanta! Bread & Butterfly was at the top of my must-try list, knowing that a) I love breakfast and b) all pastries I’ve had from Proof Bakeshop are finger-licking good. These folks know how to do baked goods right and I’m so glad that more and more we’re seeing established Atlanta restaurants spread their wings into different neighborhoods.
This Parisian-inspired cafe is open like all day long – perfect for lingering – and switches up their tastefully small menu at strategic times of day. My friend Alicia and I made it right as the breakfast menu was coming to a close. It was the perfect start to a weekday off; with time to really savor every item, it was simplicity that I sought and simplicity that I got. It was a Wednesday morning so the place was absolutely empty save for two loners. So if you’re near Inman Park and needing a new quiet place to hole up and read, study, whatever… here’s your new spot! It was way too cold to sit outside but I imagine once we warm up again, the patio will be just divine.
I will warn you, the prices aren’t as casual as I had hoped. It’s the perfect place for a day date, a nice brunch, or treating yourself with your girls. But everyday pit stop it is not. Should you need to go somewhere a bit more friendly to the wallet, I’d recommend Amelie’s.
The food itself was carefully made and I took my time in eating it. It was worth enjoying the moment, the flavor, the textures. You could probably go there and spend less than I did if you just ordered regular coffee and a pastry. But if you’re going to indulge in a nice breakfast, just let it happen. I’m pretty happy I did.
I could have never imagined that after five years I would have cultivated such a vast and diverse network of colleagues and creatives here in Atlanta. I’m starting to get used to living in a state of constant awe for the work that people do. There are just some of us that have a unique vision for an enhanced life, a simpler way of living beautifully. My friend Joseph is one of those people.
How do I describe Joseph? I’m always challenged when I try to capture the essence of people in words, but obvously I have to try. Joseph is someone who understands the many ingredients it takes to have a lovely experience; he appreciates the home-made, the genuine, the warmth of sitting down with someone to share a meal. I think he and I became friends because we both see potential, in the world and in others. There’s really nothing more beautiful than taking the time to make something (for me, art and for him, food), imbue it with care and love, and offer it to someone to better their lives.
I was thrilled to see that he has created a platform for everyone in the neighborhood to enjoy his vision at Joseph and Co. Nestled in the corner of Glenwood Park, his store is like a model for a well-loved kitchen and pantry, stocked with local food goods as well as baked treats by Joseph himself. When you come in, order a coffee and stay a while.
Perhaps that’s really the thing I love the most about Joseph and his shop – it’s an open invitation to take a moment and stay a while. The lofty windows and array of provisions begs you to slow down, be inspired, and take a piece of that charming experience home with you. Oh, and the delicious buttery flaky croissants don’t hurt either.
I’ve been pretty quiet on the blog front, but it’s not for a lack of desire, interest, or content. I’ve been spending my free moments over the past few weeks being a maker – doing things instead of dreaming of doing them.
Earlier this year I applied to Indie Craft Experience’s Holiday Spectacular thinking that getting into this event would light a fire under my butt and.. boy, did it ever. Feeling under the gun, I’ve been making decisions and spending money on new products without second thought. I leapt.
I don’t want to count my chickens before they hatch, but I want this to be it. I want this to be the real actual start of me feeling like I’ve got a direction. It’s never felt so close to being real and I don’t want this to stop. As exhausted and scared as I am, I am happy that I’m willing myself into this. More to come soon.
As much as it pains me to say this, I recognize that museums aren’t always the most exciting activity for a lot of people. Most people would much rather go see a movie, shop the mall, or walk the Beltline. And while all those things are just as enjoyable and just as stimulating, I think people all too often are missing out on the chance to experience a unique sense of awe that you can only find within the white temple of the art museum. It does require a willingness, a desire to remove oneself from all the media crap out there and focus in on a moment. A visual record of a moment of individual (or collective) inspiration to create something out of nothing.
Sometimes it can be easy to find that awe, standing in front of gargantuan Rothkos or among rows of classical carrara marble sculptures. Other times it takes explanation, reflection, and thinking outside oneself to find meaning. The High Museum’s mission is to cultivate a community where art appreciation and education can thrive so that this kind of museum-going experience becomes a shared one. Their recent programming aims to entice the broader Atlanta audience and in their upcoming exhibition, they do so through the glossy lens of fashion.
Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion blurs the line between form and function and will be The High Museum’s first ever fashion design exhibition. Dutch fashion designer Iris van Herpen is known for creating sculptural couture looks which feature various media, everything from magnets to synthetic boat rigging. It’s no wonder she was the first to introduce 3D printing technology into the world of fashion! The integration of this new technique with traditional handiwork results in a collection of pieces that feel at once both out-of-this-world and of the body.
Join me at the opening party for this exhibition on Friday, November 6th from 7:00pm to 10:00pm! The event is free and open to the public, complete with a dance performance from the Atlanta Ballet, music by DJ Speakerfoxxx, and most importantly… Iris van Herpen herself! The exhibition opens officially on November 7th and runs through May 15th 2016, giving you plenty of time to see these extraordinary pieces.
This post is sponsored by The High Museum of Art; however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.