Bay Area Eats & Drinks

Class starts up tomorrow and I can say with certainty I will be back to regular procrastination blogging and commenting.  Here's what I've been up to:

Mixed Stripe Fit and Flare Dress from Banana Republic

Tried on the Mixed-Stripe Fit-and-Flare dress from Banana Republic.  I loved the heavyweight but stretchy fabric and flattering stripes but hate the ongoing trend of exposed zippers (still a time/place for them but it doesn't work on every garment).  There's a bright gold one on the back and it's distracting and inelegant.

Mixed Stripe Fit and Flare Dress from Banana Republic
Photos from Banana Republic

My little sister came up with this combo for our New Year's shots.  Kombucha is a fizzy fermented health drink much loved by hippies the world over so I was pretty amused to be mixing up an alcoholic drink with it.  Added a splash of grenadine and it was a fun way to ring in 2014!

Movie charcuterie, Applegate salami, rind washed cheese, olives, green grapes, rose
 De Chanceny rose brut from Whole Foods

Movie snacks and rosé brut from a mad foray into Whole Foods on NYE.  This De Chanceny rosé brut is effervescent on the nose with hints of tart berry and a pleasantly dry finish.  For under $20, this is an excellent bubbly and gosh, the pink sure is purrty. 

True Burger, Oakland, CA burgersTrue Burger, Oakland, CA burgers and star shaped tater tots from Target

Amazing cheeseburger and deluxe burger (crispy portobello mushroom + beef patty) from True Burger (Yelp) in Oakland, CA.  My cheeseburger was perfect, and I don't say that lightly!  The meat was moist but fully cooked (my preference for burgers), the cheese was gooey but not too salty or oily, the vegetables were crisp and not watery, and the bun was airy but strong.  Oftentimes when I order a "gourmet" burger, the bun is dry or it completely falls apart. Not sure what sauce they use but it tasted a lot like garlic aioli. They said that they actually cook it in a pressure cooker....find the best pressure cookers here. My mouth is watering now lol.  The star shaped tater tots are from Target and were also very yummy and super cute to boot.

Me eating spicy pork tonkotsu ramen at Tamashii Ramen House in Richmond, CA
Spicy tonkotsu ramen at Tamashii Ramen House in Richmond, CA

Trying not to laugh while my brother-in-law takes a pic and my spicy pork tonkotsu ramen from Tamashii Ramen House (Yelp), located at Pacific East Mall in Richmond, CA.

Black garlic oil ramen at Tamashii Ramen House in Richmond, CA
This is was my first visit and service was very slow that day (it was after NYE so maybe short-staffed?) but the ramen was good!  I ordered extra hot and my broth was pretty spicy.  There are more pieces of pork hiding and I really liked the noodle texture and thickness.  My sister got the black garlic ramen and that was deliciously unctuous and garlickly.  Her hubby's curry ramen had them both pretty enamored as well..

Saison DuPont Belgian Farmhouse Ale

To me, saison is like the "champagne of beers."  Vieille Provision Saison DuPont is light, fruity, and refreshing.  It's especially good for summer meals.

Foret organic saison ale by DuPont Brewery

DuPont brewery also makes Foret, an organic saison ale.  The two photos above are from a past visit with one of my older sisters.  It's late May and we're eating some leftover breakfast pizza outside in her honeysuckle-scented garden.  I miss warm weather!

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2014 New Year's Resolutions

Improve health & fitness

Health/fitness goals are completely relative so I try not to compare myself to other people.  I have a naturally slim body type, pretty fast metabolism, and good upper body strength.  I'd like to strengthen my core again. As somebody who spends a lot of time at her desk, core strength and flexibility is very important (lower back pain, anybody?).  I would also like to work on my cardio.  I do okay on long hikes and I've been doing sprints and 2 mile jogs with my dog but I want to improve my general endurance.  

My abs at - fitness
Before: Clean eating + regular HIIT  
Now: Whole frozen pizza + fruit & veggie smoothie in my tummy + no real exercise routine