Tavern Hall, FLO Sushi, and Sunday Dinner

As you all know. I LOVE food. So this weekend was like an eat-fest of deliciousness.

After cooking all week,  Michael and I decided to grab a meal out on Friday. We tried a new place called Tavern Hall in Bellevue. Tavern Hall is a pub-style bar with an Irish décor vibe to it. Known for their Moscow Mule on tap, Michael and I both had one.


For our dinner, Michael had the Tavern Burger and I had the Chicken Sando. If you ever go, get the Chicken Sando. It is by far the best chicken sandwich I've ever had. So crispy, served on a rustic bun, with a crisp coleslaw, and spicy aioli, you'll think you're in chicken sandwich heaven after a bite.


On Saturday, I got a surprise gift from one of my sisters. Tea! Oh I do love tea.


Then that night we did a prebirthday celebration with Michael's sister (our birthdays are three days apart) and her husband at FLO sushi. We exchanged gifts and it was such a strange coincidence that we both got each other Kate Spade gifts!



 


Sunday was very rainy (as I write this, it's still raining), so Michael and I kept it low key. I spent the morning reading SPEAK (book review to come!) while Michael organized the garage and basement. For dinner, we realized we wanted to do something special because we'd be missing each other the next two weekends due to travel. Alas we did a team effort and made steak with onions and a green bean casserole. We opened a Maurice's estate Syrah from 2009 (my fave!) and had some dark chocolate for dessert.


A very good weekend of deliciousness indeed!

Guest post, promotion, and splurges. Not a bad way to end twenty-three.

A great big, giant, thank you to Michelle Athy at 'The Sunflower's Scribbles' for giving me the opportunity to guest post on her blog! If you haven't read it yet, you can find out how I got into writing here.

In other good news that happened yesterday, I got a promotion and raise at work! There's nothing like doing a good job and being rewarded for it. And yes, this finally means I can take this 'entry level' label off me. As a reward to myself, I went on a trip to the bookstore in search of a good read and found these two, that were highly recommended to me.


As of late I've been rereading books on my kindle (hence no new book reviews!), so I'll try and start up again with these two. And what are books without a beverage to go with it? As another splurge I got ceremonial grade matcha and set from PANATEA. How do you like your tea? Straight up or latte form? I'll take both!


And as a way to top off the day, Michael and I had drinks to cheers my awesome day. This is definitely not a bad way to end my last few days being 23.

Walla Walla Series: Our Wine Haul and Saffron

So by mid afternoon, we're still at it! Wine tasting galore! 
 

We went to Gramercy and then Long Shadows where we got some nice Riesling. In the below photo you can see their chihuly art.


But I think this was the point where the wine started to hit us.  Michael was getting weary and I was so hungry.

So after Longshadows we went to get a sandwich, but by the time we were done we were only able to hit up one more winery before the tasting rooms closed. We ended up choosing Sleight of Hand that had this cool record player and tons of records along the walls. It was by far the most eccentric winery I've ever seen.



Returning back to the inn Michael and I observed our wine haul. 13 bottles!




For our last night we went to Saffron for dinner. This place is also a must if you ever go to Walla Walla.


 
The great thing about Walla Walla is the surrounding farms, meaning all ingredients were organic, picked at peak season, and weren't sprayed with pesticides. The tomatoes in the salad were so ripe and juicy!
 

Then we had some calamari which was seasoned very well and super tender.


This one's hard to see, but it's fried potatoes in a sweet and spicy sauce. It was so good. My favorite appetizer out of the three.


Michael had the steak for dinner and I had the duck ragu.



My favorite part of any meal, hands down, is the dessert! This panacotta was beyond heavenly.


Then we finished it off with some port wine and expresso.


Before we knew it, our Walla Walla trip was over!

The rest of the Walla Walla series:

Tranche, a Maurice, Walla Walla Vintners

L'Ecole, Woodward Canyon, Reininger, Brasserie Four

Walla Walla Series: Tranche, a Maurice, Walla Walla Vintners

So yesterday I posted about the first day in Walla Walla (see post here), today I'll be posting about the morning after (this past Saturday). Well, the first half of that day anyway. Saturday turned out to be super busy. So much wine to taste, but so little time!

We started with the eastside by hitting up Tranche first. This winery was pretty neat because we were able to drive through the vineyard. I mean, look at that! Isn't that gorgeous?


The wine tasting was also held in the same room where they stored their wine.


After tasting, we ended up driving through the vineyard for more photo ops.




Then on our way out we came across this galloping deer. I pointed at it, "Look michael isn't it so cute?" It seriously stared at us before squatting, taking a shit, then running in front of the car. Not so cute, anymore.


After we went to A Maurice, which turned out to be my favorite winery there. There whole driveway going up to it was filled with lavender and dancing butterflies. It smelled so heavenly and was just such a beautiful welcome that I knew this would be a winner.



The wine below was my absolute favorite on the whole trip (and not just because the label was adorable).



Next we went across the street to Walla Walla Wintners. This one turned out to be Michael's favorite on the trip.




Michael was so cute he buckled up the wine box just so they wouldn't tip over.

 
Now off to more wineries that I'll post tomorrow!

Walla Walla Series: L'Ecole, Woodward Canyon, Reininger, Brasserie Four

The past weekend in Walla Walla was one to remember! Since I took so many photos, I'm going to have to do a series of posts like I did for NYC.

A similar interest that Michael and I have is wine. We both love it. It's a part of our lives and something we always enjoy. So for our summer romantic getaway, we decided to hit the road to Eastern Washington's wine country in Walla Walla. It's about a 4-5 hour drive from Seattle, but it's worth it. The contrast from west to east (port city to high dessert) was startling. Slowly the scenery changed from emerald green to dusty yellow. We didn't mind though. In some ways, it reminded me of California.

On our way in to town we did three tastings before getting to our bed and breakfast at Fat Duck Inn.

The first was L'Ecole:


The staff here was so knowledgeable and helpful, giving us so many recommendations during our stay. Not to mention, they had delicious wine that we ended up buying two bottles.

The second was Woodward Canyon:


The great thing about this place was their selection of whites. Since Walla Walla has more of the 'big reds,' this was a special treat. From Woodward we got a nice riesling.

Our third tasting was Reininger:


This was such a cute place! We even came across a rooster on our way in. The owner of the place was so gracious as he introduced himself to us. We got a red blend and a red peppery tasting rose.

For dinner, we miraculously got a reservation at 7 p.m. at Brasserie Four. I say miraculously became this French Restaurant was phenomenal and we were only lucky because their was a cancellation. If you ever head into Walla Walla, make a reservation before hand! Michael and I lucked out this time around, but we know we won't be as lucky next time.

To Michael's glee, the restaurant had this rose:

 
This is supposed to be the best rose, or at least that's what we've been hearing, so Michael was dying to try it. Turns out, it is the best damn rose ever. More please?
 
Michael and I started off with escargot (snails) and instead of being just buttery in flavor as you would expect, it tasted earthy and grassy (in a good way). We couldn't figure out what it was seasoned with, but it was delicious!


The last time I had escargot was almost two years ago in Paris, so right away I knew this meal would be memorable. If someone ever wants to take me back to Paris, I would be extremely delighted!

Alright, next appetizer? Tartare!


This tartare was unique because it was made with sockeye salmon (one of Michael's absolute faves). It was so well-balanced I could eat it forever and not tire of it.

For entrees Michael had the bouillabaisse filled with mussles, clam, scallops, and fish :


He said it was the best bouillabaisse he's ever had. I had the classic moules frites (mussles and fries):


It did not dissappoint! I just wish I had a bigger stomach to finish it!


Here's a photo of Micahel and I. Very blurry, but I think it's a great depiction of the moment: wine drunk. Just kidding! The lighting was just too dark to take a good photo.


To finish off, Micahel had an expresso and we shared a creme brulee.


Such a wonderful meal! As you can tell, wine isn't the only thing Michael and I have an interest in! Food is just as important!

Since our inn was only half a mile away and the weather warm. Michael and I had decided to walk instead of drive. Big mistake! We ended up being followed by a sketchy character who later gave up. Lesson learned. Never walk around at night in a town you haven't been to before.

Beach Lunch & Never-ending Writing

Oh fridays, how I love thee...

Now that I have Fridays off, it's become one of my favorite days and yesterday was one of the best ones. I woke up and wrote all day then Michael took me to Paseo's for lunch and we brought it to the Golden Gardens park to eat.


Outside of Paseo waiting for our food!

My Caribbean bowl, yum!

Michael and his sandwich
Then we came back home and I went back to editing.

That stack = my manuscript
I had planned to send out the manuscript to my beta readers this morning, but then I met up with my writing critique partner later that night and she suggested a few changes.

Critiquing with my partner and Fuel coffee as I enjoy a Lavender Italian soda.
So it looks like I'm postponing sending out my manuscript to my betas next weekend before I leave on my trip to Walla Walla. Just when I think I'm almost finished, I'm not. Gah! Writing sometimes seems never-ending, and I am so tempted to start on a new project. Jeez M2, when will you be done?

Lovin' Summer


I am loving summer here in Seattle. It's so beautiful, warm, and so green. And you know me, I love eating the cold sweet stuff too! I mean just look at that Prosecco float with strawberry sorbet I had out on the Bottlehouse Patio. Not to mention Michael and I have been frequenting the ice cream shop below us and taking night time walks. My favorite ice cream flavors at Molly Moon's ice cream are stumptown coffee, scout mint, and melted chocolate. Yuummm.


Though the summer heat's been good to me, it hasn't been for the Blaire bear. Not many places have AC in Seattle and the same applies for our apartment unit, except our apartment building has AC in the halls and lobby. Can you believe that? Blaire's been running out into the hall any chance he can get to cool off. One time, our neighbor caught Michael and I letting Blaire frolick in the hallways, so now we've harnessed and leashed Blaire so he can have a cool night time roam in the hall.


Except, Blaire hates the harness and ends up rolling in the carpet trying to get it off. Still, he looks darn cute in it, just like a kitten!

So remember my cute Kate Spade purse Michael got me in this post? Well we ended up going shopping this weekend and Nordstrom's was having a sale. So Michael got me this wallet to match. Best. Boyfriend. Everrrr.


But really, we went to the mall so that I could buy Michael an early birthday present. since Michael broke his sunglasses, we went shopping to get him some nice sunnies. Aren't those Prada shades nice?


In just about a week, this handsome gent will be 27! Time sure flies! Right after purchasing the sunglasses Michael and I passed by Trophy cupcake and ended up splitting a red velvet cupcake (my favorite).



 Then on Sunday we went to watch my second Mariner's game of the season with Cristine and Tim.


Michael and I

Cristine, Me, and Michael