Inman Park. Italian food. Covered patio. These are all words that entice me and probably every other 30-something living in Atlanta.
Despite what my Instagram may have you think, we actually don’t eat out really all that much. Save for BuHi, but that doesn’t count! Asian food is my comfort food so BuHi is like going to a cozy mom and pop shop down the street. At least that’s what I tell myself. For Ben’s birthday, we decided to revisit a restaurant we had remembered enjoying – BoccaLupo.
I can’t remember what was in this cocktail (this is how old I’m getting) but I do remember that it was tart, bright, and Florida themed. I really really enjoyed it. The cauliflower appetizer was delicious but I was disappointed by how much it cost given that it wasn’t a huge amount and the flavors weren’t revolutionary. A roasted cauliflower is always good, but when you pay double digits for a vegetable appetizer, you kind of want it to be extraordinary. Or at least a healthy amount. The picture above is the full amount that was given to us.
What we DID feel was worth it was the pasta. Oooohhhhh that pasta. I’m a real sucker for flat wide pasta; something about the mouth feel I think just really hits the spot. With the ragu, it was just delectable. I finished the whole. Thing. Ben’s pasta (below) was lovely but mine was totes better.The good thing about not ginormous portions is that there was plenty of room for dessert. And it was Ben’s birthday so that called for TWO desserts!! What can I say. I like to indulge.
All in all, BoccaLupo was good but I think our choices from the menu were just not the top notch ones. I guess that happens when you don’t frequent a restaurant often – you are more likely to stumble onto some things that are not their best. I think it’s also a challenge given that the restaurant scene is growing exponentially in Atlanta so everyone is asking themselves, what is gonna make me come back here? I like this place, but do I love this place? Hard to say.
Okay so I’m Asian and I love food, but that doesn’t mean I’m an expert on all Asian food. Of all the variety of Asian cuisine out there, I undoubtedly have strong opinions about Chinese food and Vietnamese food because that’s my heritage and that’s what I’ve been eating all my life. What I don’t know much about is Korean and Japanese cuisine. So when it comes to trying new Asian restaurants, it’s those that I’m going to go for because I want to continue broadening my experiences with each. Being in Atlanta, I have plenty to choose from! Last week I tried Yet Tuh, a small little spot off of Buford Highway. Thanks Instagram!
We got there extremely early so the place was completely empty. Its location is definitely off the beaten path but it’s well worth the trip. Again, I remind you that I know nothing about what good Korean food is supposed to be like. But I very much enjoyed most aspects of this dinner. It was tough to only be a two-person party because of how many items we ordered (we just had to try them), but that made for plenty of leftovers to carry me through the week. Of all the dishes, my favorite was
I love myself a weekday drink with a friend and I’m assuming you do too. I mean if you don’t, you’re missing out on one of the great joys of being an adult. Meeting up in the afternoon and knowing that you’re going to catch up and simply enjoy a smooth drink and a salty snack – there’s not really a better way to top off your workday.
I’m pretty lucky that I’m surrounded by women of such a high caliber in my life. I’m even luckier that they don’t hate me for taking pictures of our food and drinks before we dig in (they know me by now).
Last week I met up with a friend and we dipped our toes into the menu at Cooks & Soldiers over on the Westside. To be completely honest, I can’t say I’ve made a decision about whether or not it’s worth a visit. I’ve had high expectations for this restaurant for quite some time now. Maybe that can be blamed on instagram, particularly the mouth-watering shots of their chef stirring huge pans of paella.
When you get to your late 20s (or are in your last year of them), weeknight dinner dates with friends are everything. Everything. There’s nothing like enjoying a lovely cocktail and delicious food with your girl. So when my friend Elizabeth and I do get the chance to meet up, we try to keep it fresh. Last week we tried the newly re-opened Double Zero in Emory Village.
Featuring a diversely Italian American menu, this recently relocated restaurant (formly in Roswell) is a very welcome addition to the Druid Hills/Emory neighborhood. I live in Woodland Hills which is right off of Cheshire Bridge Road and often find myself having to go a little drive south, west, or north for good eats. General Muir is one of my favorite spots close-by and this may become a staple as well. Though slightly pricey for a casual weeknight, my birthday was a good reason to splurge on a good selection of their small but shareable plates.
Seafood and pasta is no question some of my favorite to indulge in. When cooked properly, it’s an indulgence unlike anything else. We started with the clams with toasted bread and I mean, anything with toasted bread has my heart. The perfect plate to go with the refreshing-but-packs-a-punch drinks. We asked our waitress to help us make our choices and we were pretty satisfied with all of them. Elizabeth loved those briny and bright clams, I was surprisingly very much into the arancini and I think both of us needed two more bowls of the tonnarelli pasta.
The portions are definitely shareable and we had enough food, but I just wanted more. How could you not want more? We scraped up every little bit of the pork cheek ragu from the plate pictured above. I will say though the scallops were awesome, it was probably at the bottom for me. Just not worth $15, sorry. I probably would have preferred a second bowl of clams or pasta instead. But now I know!
One thing we did not get to dabble in was the pizza. I’ve seen their pizzas on instagram so my eye is on them next. I’m glad the restaurant is big, open, and uncomplicated. The cocktails were light but strong, clear and fresh. I won’t be coming here often (like as often as I eat on Buford Highwat) but it’ll be perfect for the occasional date night instead of the farther away alternatives. All in all, a great addition to the neighborhood!
Yes, two weeks later and I’m still ruminating on the best moments of our Charleston trip. That and also my normal life is just not that exciting. So I finally get to bring to you photos from one of my favorite meals in the Holy City, a lovely Sunday dinner at Chez Nous. We did our due diligence prior to the trip and Chez Nous was at the top of our list – the kind of place that focused on high quality simplicity, changing their menu every single day to suit the prime ingredients of the season.
The day we drove to Charleston we checked Chez Nous’ instagram to see what was on the menu. Every day features two starters, two entrees, and two desserts – you can select however many you’d like for the table, even just a dessert if that’s your fancy. Their dishes are inspired by French, Italian, and Spanish cuisines – classic flavor combinations cooked exactly as they’re meant to be.
On top of that, we were lucky enough to get the best al fresco table in the house. Well, outside the house. Sitting outside as the light slowly dipped beneath the trees, everything felt exactly as it should be. The service, ambiance… it was all juuust right.
I guess I should talk a little bit about the food, right?
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.
It’s been far far too long since I’ve written about food on here. My time is getting ever more precious to me so it’s been difficult for me to take the time to write about food experiences over using that time to paint or do a quick outfit post. So here I am to remedy that, with my thoughts on Chef Liu’s.
People come to me frequently for restaurant suggestions, but really.. I don’t have as many as you think. Yes, I’m adventurous and yes I love to experience new things and explore Atlanta. But I, much like you, have only a handful of tried and true go-to spots. It’s partly due to financial constraints and partly due to the comfort of convenience.
Asian food is quite obviously essential to my weekly dining. I’m no expert on cooking Asian food myself (apart from random stir frying), so what ends up happening is I have a few key restaurants on rotation to get my fix. Though I’m more partial to Vietnamese food by nature (and childhood upbringing), every now and then I just neeeeed Chinese. Like… better than stupid takeout Chinese. So I’m always on the hunt for a good Chinese restaurant that can cook correctly and leave me feeling satiated without feeling like a grease face. Chef Liu’s is one such place.
As you can see by these photos, we were hungry and ordered way more than we could finish. But of course that gives us the upside of leftovers, which is almost required when eating family style Asian. From what I can remember, we ordered pork intestines, jellyfish salad, cold spicy noodles, dumplings, beef stew, and some sort of chicken chow fun deal. Whatever, you can use your eyes.
I had been hearing lots of things about Ladybird, so it was time I find out firsthand. Perfect opportunity for a lady brunch, right?
When you get into your late 20s, brunch unfortunately starts to lose its luster. You no longer have the availability to devote hours and hours on a Sunday to sitting around gabbing over mimosas. But every now and then, it’s necessary to indulge and enjoy the company of other lovely ladies. A couple hours out of your errand-running is nothing compared to to some good-hearted laughs with friends. Ladybird was a great spot to spend some quality time – family-style tables, down-home casual breakfast food, and endless cups of coffee.
Everything was pretty darn delightful here (company included obviously). Their brunch selection covers anything you might be craving for a cozy weekend morning. I myself went for the savory mexican flavors with a cast iron pan full of chips, salsa, avocado, an egg. You know, tasty stuff. Other delicious choices on our table included the deviled eggs, beignets, farro bowl, hot chicken biscuits, and breakfast flatbread.
For how big a fan I am of Richard Blais, I surprise myself by how few times I actually visit his restaurants. I’ve been to Flip Burger a number of times now, but with the Ponce location having just opened their rooftop patio, it was time to make another visit. I went on a weekday, so it was pretty empty and for a little while, we had the brand new rooftop patio all to ourselves.