Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Destiny


“Each person comes into this world with a specific destiny -- he has something to fulfill, some message has to be delivered, some work has to be completed.  You are not here accidentally -- you are here meaningfully.  There is a purpose behind you.  The whole intends to do something through you.”
    ― Osho                               


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

French Laundry

Consider this crossed off my bucket list:  Eat at French Laundry.

I went out to California to celebrate one of my dear friend's birthdays out in wine country.  As part of the weekend, which inadvertently turned into a pilgrimage to worship at the house of Thomas Keller, we had dinner at the one and only French Laundry.

The multi-course tasting menu included every protein you could think of plus a few surprises.  The signature "Oysters and Pearls" dish stands out in my mind.  It's obviously a signature for a reason.  Also, I have to add that the "Assortment of Desserts" at the bottom of the menu is complete crap.  Everyone at the table was pleasantly full by the end of the last dinner course.  Having been to many similar restaurants in the past, I expected a dessert course followed by a few extra treats like chocolates, candies, etc.  That happy-full definitely turned into a very-happy-but-extremely-uncomfortable-full for me.  The "Assortment of Desserts" should be renamed "The Endless Stream of Desserts That Won't Stop Until You Cry 'Uncle.'"  Off the top of my head, there were cookies, chocolates, candied nuts, semifreddo, something with coconut, and doughnuts.  That definitely only half the list.  Oh, did I mention this was all preceded by a cheese course?  And they gave us a bag of shortbread cookies to take home?    

{french laundry}

Other takeaways from our great evening included the fact that:
  • I definitely, most certainly do not like lamb
  • My friends really should think twice before taking me to nice places (I might have said that the fancy box holding the black truffles was holding a tiara instead.  In all seriousness.  Out loud.  To the waiter.)
  • Nothing beats good food with great friends.  

Friday, September 20, 2013

I ♥ NY


 {wedding}

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Grill

My sister was home from that place which shall not be mentioned over the month of July.  (Yes, this post is woefully out of date, but I'm still quite proud of my accomplishment, so I thought it was worth mentioning.)  She and I had big plans to grill steaks and burgers and vegetables and fruit and really anything else that will fit on a grill all month.  But as luck would have it, my parents' grill died the week before we were about to fire it up.  A new one was ordered online, but for some reason, there was a disconnect in my mind, and I assumed that it would show up at the doorstep fully assembled and ready to go.  I have no idea why I thought this, because clearly, all the grills I've seen sold at Home Depot were in compact boxes.  Why I thought a truck would pull up with a perfectly assembled grill is beyond me.  And so the grill arrived at my parents' on July 3rd.  Completely unassembled.  In a box.  Oh, and did I mention this was during the insane heat wave? 

{in pieces}

The task of putting the grill together fell to me by default.  My father had just had hip surgery and was still on crutches.  My mother, although a very talented artist, truly does not know the right end of a screwdriver.  And it never occurred to me to ask my sister to do it instead.

My pride in putting together this grill has nothing to do with my abilities.  Actually, I think I'm  better than most people when it comes to mechanical and electrical related issues if I put my mind to it.  But that's the issue.  I rarely want to put my mind to it.  I'll just come out and say it - I'm a girly girl.  I absolutely abhor manual labor.  Even putting together Ikea furniture annoys me.  There may been a time when I've feigned ignorance to try to get out of assembling an Ikea Lack table.  Look it up, and you'll understand how absurd this statement is.  So the fact that I endured 101 degree heat in order to willingly assemble anything is quite an accomplishment for me.  It was surprisingly quick work, and the results were tasty!

{grill}

Change

Change is coming....

 
{change}


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Ravel

She seriously has the cutest face in the world. 

{ravel}

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Berkshires

For years, my family celebrated my mother's birthday at Tanglewood.  Her birthday weekend almost always seemed to coincide with the weekend on which Yo-Yo Ma was performing with the Boston Symphony Orchestra.  My mother is very fond of Yo-Yo Ma, so we always made a point of trying to make his concerts there.  We would pack a fancy picnic dinner and make the 2 hours drive up to Lenox, MA and spend the evening on the lawn while listening to great music. 

This year, I decided to upgrade and make a full weekend out of it.  I booked myself and my parents rooms at a very charming but very fancy little place called The Wheatleigh.  The staff and the service were fantastic.  I woke up every morning and threw open my windows to take in the crisp mountain air. 

I also got me and my mom day passes at Canyon Ranch.  I don't have any pictures of Canyon Ranch because I was too busy enjoying my massage.

To top off a great weekend, we had time to see two concerts.  We saw Lang Lang perform Beethoven Piano Concerto #1, but more importantly, the BSO performed Ravel's Daphnis et Chloé in its entirety.  If it wasn't already apparent from what I named my dog, Ravel is far and away my favorite composer, and Daphnis et Chloé is one of my favorite pieces.  But really, any concert where I get to hear some Ravel is a great concert.  And in a nod to tradition, we saw Yo-Yo Ma's concert the next day too.  

My mother enjoyed her birthday weekend so much this year that she's already talking about going back next year.  I wouldn't mind at all.  It was wonderful to get away into the country for a while.  
   
 
{the berkshires}

 
{the wheatleigh}
 

{dad enjoying the view}
 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Ravel


{ravel}

Friday, September 6, 2013

I ♥ NY



{people watching}


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Nantucket

One of my absolute favorite places is Nantucket.  I try to go every summer.  Last year, my sister and I went as a last hurrah before she abandoned me for the Land of Noodles.  This year, we celebrated the birthday of one of my dearest friends by renting a house right on the water.  The weather ended up being touch and go for most of the weekend, but it didn't matter since it was the company that mattered the most.   

 
{sconset beach}

I often joke that I run into or meet more people from my hometown on Nantucket than I actually do at home.  It turns out this particular visit kept the streak alive.  The house we rented was a fantastic little spot right on the water.  After several email exchanges with the owner, we both realized that we are from the same town.  And the owner actually lives down the street from my parents.  And although her children and I didn't go to high school together, we know many of the same people. 

 
{view from the house}

To be honest, I spent the vast majority of the weekend working from the house while my friends were off shopping in town and biking to the beaches.  But we were able to eat at some great spots including Cru.  Next year, I'm definitely going to try to leave the laptop at home. 

{wharf}

Monday, September 2, 2013

Naeng Myun

When the weather gets uncomfortably hot like it did this summer, nothing tastes as good as a cold bowl of naeng myun.  Sadly, good naeng myun is not easy to find in New York.  A handful of restaurants serve it, but I find most of it to be passable.  Nothing to write home about.

In the middle of the oppressive heat wave we experienced in July, I was sitting at my desk with the a/c on and two fans pointed directly at me, and I was still somehow managing to have some very unladylike sweat rings under my armpits.  While catching up on my articles in Google Reader (R.I.P.) when I saw someone had written about places to get naeng myun in the city.  My mouth immediately started watering.  I immediately had visions of me swimming in an icy cold bowl of naeng myun.  I know - it's weird, but when you're that hot, you start having very irrational thoughts.  Then something caught my eye.  Naeng myun in a bowl made of ice.  WHAT.  I'm still amazed I didn't drop everything I was doing to make a bee line for this place.

The place is called Tong Sam Gyup Goo Ee.  Yes, the name doesn't really roll off the tongue.  It's a name that makes more sense in Korean.  The problem is that this place is in Flushing and not a particularly easy part of Flushing to get to either.  Luckily, my family had reason to be in that area a few days later, and we were able to try it out.    

 
{naeng myun.  in an ice bowl.  WHAT.}

As advertised, the naeng myun came in an ice bowl.  Given that it was still incredibly hot out, it totally hit the spot.  It still wasn't the best naeng myun I've ever had, but it is something to write home about because it came in an ice bowl!  Sure, it's a little gimmicky, but hey, it worked.  I managed to drag myself all the way out to Flushing far past where the 7 line goes in order to try it.  That's saying something.

Tong Sam Gyup Goo Ee
162-23 Depot Rd
Flushing, NY 11358

  

Friday, August 23, 2013

I ♥ NY


 {washington square park}

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Morning Biscuit

I don't get to do it often anymore, but one of my absolute favorite things to do in the morning is to go to Kaffe 1668 and order a latte and a biscuit with jam.  Every time I'm there, I tell myself that I should write down where Kaffe 1668 get their baked goods from since I love the biscuits so much.  Clearly since I'm not giving the bakery a proper shout out right now, I've forgotten where they come from again. 

It's really just a simple breakfast.  Not healthy at all either.  The biscuit is flaky and buttery (which means the lard to flour ratio in the dough has probably blown way past 1:1), and in case that's not enough fat to clog your arteries, a nice thick layer of butter needs to be added.  Just for good measure, it's topped off with a nice little smear of jam.  For the sake of my health, it's probably a good thing that I don't get this as often as my taste buds would like, but it's delicious.  I'm getting all warm and fuzzy inside just thinking about it.  Maybe I'll go out for another later this week.

 
{biscuit with jam}

275 Greenwich Street (at Warren)
New York, NY 10007

Monday, August 19, 2013

Singapore

This post has been sitting in my drafts folder for a very long time.  One year to be exact.  Last August, my sister moved to Singapore.  I've been unable to write about this topic for a variety of reasons - I was too sad; I blame Singapore; I was too angry; I hate Singapore; I didn't want to think about it.

No, you know what?  I don't want to talk about it.  I'm too upset again.

....
....

Still mad.

....

If I were a child, I'd be stamping my feet right now.  With my fingers in my ears.  And my eyes squeezed shut.  

But at least while I was there, I had the presence of mind to go on a 7-day noodle bender.  Ok fine.  The food in Singapore isn't that bad.  One might even say it's amazing.  Yeah ok, it was glorious.

Whatever.  I don't want to talk about it.  

 
{laksa}

 
{breakfast}

 
{tasty noodles}

 
{pork jerky}

 
{noodly goodness}

 
{ramen ippudo}

 
{singaporean chili crab.  KILLED IT.}



Friday, August 16, 2013

Stuck in a Bag

About a year ago, I made a promise that I would continue to consistently keep a creative outlet in my life.  I thought I was doing pretty well for a while, but then life happened, and my creativity had to take a back seat.  So what's been going on lately?  I think Pasha pretty much sums it up here.  No, I'm entirely sure what I mean, but I'm positive there's some sort of existential analogy to be made here. 

{pasha}