Tuesday, June 30, 2015

LET'S GO - PHILADELPHIA PT.1

Over the weekend our family took a quick trip up to Philadelphia to celebrate my grandmother's birthday.  It was great to get everyone together, for Wes to get to meet Bub as well as the rest of my family, and to get out of town for a bit.  It was a bit of a whirlwind as we flew in at the absolute crack of dawn on Friday and headed home on Sunday afternoon, but it was totally worth it.  There's nothing better than spending time with family.  I took hundreds of photos over the weekend so I will spare you the insane photo album, but I thought I would share some highlights from the weekend in a couple of posts this week from our adventure in Philadelphia, I hope you enjoy!

 The Navy Yard was pretty magical and a bit spooky.  So many old mothballs too see up close, a bit of a change from the freighters in Savannah.



 Dear old South Street.  After grabbing cheesesteaks in Camden, Dad, Sam, Wes and I decided to walk off the food coma rather than giving into it down on South Street.  There are always some amazing pieces of art to check out. And I can't forget that oh-so-special South Street smell...
 The family gathering to watch the Belmont Stakes and getting to see the first Triple Crown win in my lifetime!
Enjoying the view.
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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

LET'S EAT PT. 3 - CHIVE SEA BAR & LOUNGE

Let's Eat - Chive Sea Bar & Lounge cocktails and seafood
I'm glad to say I am finally back with another Let's Eat post.  Up this week is the ever-popular CHIVE SEA BAR & LOUNGE.  If you live in Savannah, there is a good chance you have encountered the ELE AND THE CHEF restaurant group.  With six different restaurants in the city and a seventh on the way, they've just about cornered the market for Asian fusion in the city and I'm not complaining.  The attention to detail they pay in each of their restaurants is amazing.  I always leave happy when I'm eating with Ele and the Chef. 
We decided to go to Chive with Mom and her two friends who were in town for the weekend.   *NOTE* They came into our dear city to continue on a nine-year tradition of an annual girls vacation.  I'll tell you a bit about it because I think it is the coolest idea out there.  Eight women take a trip every summer.  Two are tasked with planning the trip and the other six aren't allowed to know where they are going.  They are simply told when to be at the airport and are given their confirmation number that morning along with a packing list about a week before.  There are hints along the way but from what I can tell they seem to be used more to try and throw everyone off rather than actually help them with guessing where they are going.  Dinner was spent tweeting and "periscoping" (a new one for me) video chats to the girls so they could ask questions about where they would be flying in the following morning.  The two planners arrive a day early to set everything up, hence dinner at Chive.  That's definitely the shortened version of the whole tradition, but I'm sure you get the idea.* Now, back to the food.
Chive's got one of my favorite atmospheres and menus downtown if you're looking for a more intimate setting. Everyone got something different and we did a bit of sampling from each other's plates which is always my favorite way to go about things.  Everything really was amazingly on point. 
Let's Eat - Chive Sea Bar & Lounge cocktails and seafood
We started off with some oysters on the half shell and She Crab Soup.  Two local staples down here and some of the best you will get in town.  It's pretty much guaranteed that if She Crab Soup is on the menu, Wes and I are going to try it.  It's just kind of our thing to find our favorite in the city.  Chive is definitely in the top three, if not the reigning champion for us at the moment.  And how are you going to argue with something that comes in that bowl?  
Let's Eat - Chive Sea Bar & Lounge cocktails and seafood

Let's Eat - Chive Sea Bar & Lounge cocktails and seafood
On to the entrees.  Above is the tuna ceviche.  This was the winner for me out of everyone's meal.  I will say that if you don't like spice, steer clear.  It's pretty well packed with heat; that being said it is ABSOLUTELY AMAZING! Take me back, take me back now, please.  It's listed as a small plate but is easily a full entree.  They do not skimp on the tuna or the avocado and the crispy bits on top are just perfect.  I've got to stop writing about it because now I'm just drooling on my keyboard.  
Let's Eat - Chive Sea Bar & Lounge cocktails and seafood
For my entree I got the prawn risotto which was almost as amazing.  The prawns were cooked perfectly and the serving was massive.  The risotto had a great flavor with asparagus and cherry tomatoes mixed in with a bit of heat creeping through as well.  
Let's Eat - Chive Sea Bar & Lounge cocktails and seafood
Above is the Wagyu steak with the same asparagus and cherry tomato risotto.  Having never had Wagyu steak before, I now understand the hype.  Yes, you really can cut it with a fork and yes, it really does melt in your mouth. 
Let's Eat - Chive Sea Bar & Lounge cocktails and seafood
Lastly we had the seared ahi tuna with spinach.  Honestly, I didn't try this plate as I was hogging all of the ceviche but I was told the spinach was wonderful and the ahi was good but a bit overcooked.  The flavor was all there though, so just a bit of a slip on the cooking time.  All together, the meal was top notch.  I've been there before and I will gladly go back again.  The crew at Chive know exactly what they are doing.  If you are downtown looking for a great meal and a cool setting, this is a must for sure.
The only thing better than the food was the company and the conversations over dinner.  Mark down another great Savannah night with great people.  I'll leave the periscoping to Regina from here on out.
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Tuesday, June 2, 2015

BOOKS TO READ IN JUNE

"I often carry things to read so that I will not have to look at the people."
                                                                            -Charles Bukowski
I've got a little something for everyone with this month's reading list.  Moving on from Italian to Mexican in cooking, good habits to make - and to break - and a couple great easy reads to take into summer.  Take a look below and make sure to grab a copy of one of these books the next time you are looking for a good read!
FRESH OFF THE BOAT: A MEMOIR - Eddie Huang
I had to pick this up after binge watching the ABC show based on this memoir by Eddie Huang.  If you've had a chance to catch an episode, you know that Huang is an absolute riot.  Following along on his childhood and trying to find his place in the world by making his own spot is a really great time.  After the book the next stop will have to be to grab a sandwich at BAOHAUS in the East Village.  Hands down a must-read.
THE POWER OF HABIT - Charles Duhigg
This book has been a huge help for me.  The human being is built to fall into habits.  It is our nature; that can be a good or bad thing.  The Power of Habit breaks down the good, bad, and ugly and helps to build new paths to get into the habits that you want.  It's something I flip through and have carried a lot of the information forward with me to make positive changes in my every day life.
THE DINNER - Herman Koch
What would summer be without a great thriller to take to the beach?  The Dinner is a page turner that will keep you interested until the end needing to know how these families' lives will turn out.  If you liked Gone Girl, you'll love The Dinner.


MEXICO: THE COOKBOOK - Margarita Carrillo Arronte
This may be my most prized possession.  To be clear, this is not a book, this is a piece of art.  This is your Bible for all Mexican cooking.  There are hundreds of recipes that are 100% authentic.  Yes, that does mean that you may have to look harder for ingredients and possibly buy some tools, but it is completely worth it.  Hell, even if you don't like to cook you will still love looking through the amazing photography in this.  
*Also doubles as a great free weight.
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