Afternoon Tea

The last time I made it across the pond was when I was two years old, so that obviously does not count. I am collecting a few places in my mind to go for my graduation vacation next summer and the UK is a possible contender.

Well, since you asked…I am torn between a Korea/Hong Kong (because 10+ times is not enough)/Singapore trip or parts of Northern Europe (I really want to see the Aurora Borealis while surrounded by huskies). However, that is a story for another day later down the road.

My mom flew down this weekend and I really needed the quality time with her since I only get to see her a few times a year. She invited me to have afternoon tea at The Palace Hotel with a few of her friends.

The garden court is absolutely stunning and everything felt so fancy. Here is the entrance to heaven:

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I was running a little late and there was a flute of champagne waiting for me as I arrived. A little mid-day bubbly never hurts. ;)

Essentially how it works is you buy a package ($55) and it comes with tea, champagne or sparkling wine, sandwiches, scones and pastries.

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I am the happiest when I am with this lady down here and the backdrop does not hurt either.

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The first thing for us to nibble on was five mini sandwiches. I did not have lunch yet at this point so I pretty much ate all of them before everyone finished their first one. Included were:

-smoked salmon w/ creme cheese mousse + caviar

-cucumber w/ avocado mousse + tomato

-ham & pineapple w/ cream cheese mousse + sun dried tomato

-zucchini w/ roasted red bell pepper mousse

-turkey w/ cream cheese + raspberry

Surprisingly, the ham and pineapple one was my favorite one. I feel like a hypocrite because I smack-talk everyone that likes Hawaiian pizza but you just do not put pineapple on pizza. It just does not work out like that.

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The harpist started off the afternoon playing classical songs or Sinatra, etc and ended with the Disney soundtrack. It was fantastic and all the mini-princesses around the courtyard had such a good time.

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There were a group of middle-aged women wearing fancy British hats and I honestly think we should start a campaign to make it popular in America. They were so cute and I just wanted to join them for a game of bridge. My table was lacking fancy headwear but made up for it with beautiful faces.

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To be honest, I expected a little more with the pastries. They did not seem traditional and everything was extremely sweet. What I did love was the scones nestled all the way on the bottom. I had maybe four and they were divine with rose petal jam.

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It was hard to say goodbye to such a beautiful location but that just means I will have to come back for Sunday brunch.

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Have you had afternoon tea?

I’m Crazy For Trying

When multiple people tell me that they have found the best charcuterie in San Francisco, I am there faster than (insert witty metaphor here).

Many of you know that I think charcuterie is a modern day ambrosia. It is also:

1. My favorite type of meat preparation.

2. My favorite word to say (along with jorts). It just rolls off your tongue.

Trou Normand is the place to eat this summer and I am going to tell you why their meats are hand-on-knee amazing without trying to sound incredibly pretentious. The only pork they use comes from the Mangalitsa, which is an exotic, expensive, European pig that is not often used on American charcuterie boards.

(if you took the time to click the link and look at the pictures of the pig, you will see that it is fluffy and has hair! how cute is that?!)

Anyway, this results in eating the “Kobe beef” of pigs with its creamier texture that just melts in your mouth.

I really wanted to try this place out for lunch but also did not want to drive downtown. My love for cured meats defeated my hatred for spending $17 on garages, so I took one for the team and made my way down to Trou Normand for a late lunch with my school partner in crime, Kristina.

The L-shaped space is completely airy with a nice mix of modern and traditional interior. This naked lady keeps an eye on the bar patrons and ensures that everyone is having a good time. Luckily for us, we missed the lunch rush and had almost the whole place to ourselves. I hear it gets extremely loud when it is all filled up and I did not feel like having a 80 decibel conversation. Since it was the middle of the day, we did not imbibe on any of their famous cocktails and I will have to go back to try one.

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Instead, we hydrated with this new-age cola ($4) that is fermented with ginger! It tasted nothing like a Coca-Cola but it hit the soda craving perfectly.

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With over 25 charcuterie options, we were conflicted on what to get and our waitress gave us a few recommendations based on our preferences. For the meats, we picked a rosemary salami ($6) made with white wine and garlic, ciccioli ($7) with black pepper and oregano, and a salami cotto ($6) with anise, chili and garlic. Everything was incredible and I was honestly sad that I do not have two stomachs to try more charcuterie. Next time I am choosing the guanciale and porcini salami along with the chefs selection.

We took all the cheeses they had ($11/each) and I cannot remember exactly what they are but I know from top to bottom it is a sheep milk bleu, camembert and the third is unknown.

Also, can we just take a minute and admire how beautiful this plate is? Salvatore Cracco does an amazing job putting everything together.

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Kristina is actually in Chile now with her husband but when we ate here about two weeks ago, she just came back from Peru doing volunteer work and even witnessed a live birth! She also had to be on an 72-hour IV after eating contaminated food but she is fully recovered and now has a story to tell in the future. :)

On a completely unrelated note, the backdrop is actually how I want my future home to be with exposed brick walls and a tufted leather sofa. We had an incredibly beautiful jade green sofa in my childhood home that looked similar to the one that is pictured below.

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Since we are future dietitians, we thought that this butter lettuce salad ($8) with croutons and buttermilk dressing would make up for all the saturated fat and sodium we were consuming. ;) I can never complain about ordering a salad to make myself feel better.

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We also had a hankering for the pork ragu ($14) made with fresh tagliatelle and parmesan. It was soul soothing to have a big bowl of pasta and I ate pretty much 80% of it myself. Unlike Kristina, I have no idea what portion control means.

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We finished our perfect date with a Mission Pie ($8) slice a la mode and a cup of espresso. Mmm…the only thing that would have made it better was if there was enough for three days worth of left overs.

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Also, the title refers to a Patsy Cline song I was listening to in the beginning of this post. I am just too uncreative to think of another one for now. :)

Way Out There

I am going to be a bridesmaid!! Do you remember when I announced that my friend Bailey got engaged?

She officially asked me to be apart of her bridal party while lunching at Outerlands on Monday. I am going to tag along and help check out potential venues with her later this week. :) This is so exciting!

To celebrate a gaggle of great news, we indulged in delicious food. B lives in the Outerlands neighborhood and I wanted to check them out since their re-model.

What do you think of their aesthetic? I love all of the curved lines and the wood work. It really opens the place up.

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As beautiful as it was inside, we opt to sit outdoors since it was the one day out of the year that the Sunset had great weather.

(this is my new favorite sweater and I would wear it everyday if it was socially acceptable)

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Bailey just finished a huge workout and only wanted this zucchini soup ($9). Of course this did not bode well with me and I made her share an open-faced mushroom sandwich but this was a great start! I snuck a spoonful when she was not looking.

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The waiter put our mushroom a la plancha ($13) with shishito peppers and a mushroom tapenade on two plates to make room on the table. Bailey remarkably noticed that all of their plates are from Heath. They have the best tableware- made in the US, heavy and lasts forever.

I really want the Chez Panisse collection but that is a story for another day.

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I opted for an amazing outerlands cubano ($15) made with braised pork, mortadella, swiss cheese, pickles, mustard and cole slaw. I also added a fried egg for good measure. I am normally not a huge fan of cole slaw but it was really light and did not interfere with the richness of the pork. Also, their bread is out of this world amazing! I am pretty sure they make their levain in house.

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I would not be me if I did not sneak in a chocolate donut ($3) and milk/dark chocolate chip cookie ($2.5) for a late night Netflix binge watch.

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Any tips for a first-time bridesmaid?

Do you get a desert every time you go to a restaurant?

Do It For The Likes

Hi friends! I hope everyone had a great weekend. Mine included a bit of wine tasting, indoor hipster mini-golf and so much good food. I am finally finished with my summer class and have a bit of free time! Guess how I’m going to spend it? Yep, eating amazing food with friends that I have not seen for a while. I have a lunch set up for four out of five days of this week. Who wants to fill in my Thursday?

Anyhoo, I received an e-mail from Bookatable and I decided to pass it on because I thought you guys would enjoy this! Almost everyone and their moms (mine included) has an Instagram these days and these tips look helpful. You are lying if you say you are not doing it for the likes. ;)


Over the last decade social media has been booming, and the introduction of Instagram means that nowadays for many it’s pretty normal to document every-day happenings and events in our lives. This is especially relevant to food, as it’s always nice to snap a photo of a beautifully presented desert in a fancy restaurant, or to proudly document a complicated dish you managed to prepare.
When it comes to blogging about food too, photos are key in helping to instruct how to prepare a recipe, to aide a restaurant review and most importantly, to show how delicious the food looks! Yet although anyone can use Instagram with the simple click of a button, there are many ways to really make that food snap stand out from the rest. That’s why the team over at Bookatable have created this info-graphic on ‘Tips for snapping food on Instagram’, illustrating some of the best food snapping tips from using the right filter to adding relevant ‘props’ to create a story behind the photo. Are there any more that you could add?

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What are your Instagram tips? For me, what makes or breaks a picture is how sharp it is; uncrispy pictures are a pet peeve.