I’m not quite sure who pressed the fast forward button on my life, but I’d like them to SLOW IT BACK DOWN.
I swear I was just unpacking, wearing jean shorts, and trying to figure it all out. Now, I’m living on the go, bundled in multiple layers (and beanies!)…and still trying to figure it all out.
August and September were FULL of old & new - friends, food, experiences, and more!
I know the debate in chicago is always about deep dish - I did try gino’s east - I still am not the biggest deep dish fan, but it was pretty damn good!
Another place I always hear about is big star - this queso fondido - oh boy is good (although I would still prefer la vecina’s)
atwood - cute little place off of michigan, I without a doubt need these plates in my life & my crab cake sandwich has me itching to book a flight to the east coast.
coffee shops consistently steal my heart -
two zero three - trendy little spot in the bottom of the virgin hotels
sparrow coffee - a naperville spot with homemade syrups and amazing outdoor seating
sawada - ah, this place is home to me. the black camo latte is a must try - hojicha tea, a green tea roasted over charcoal, as the base along with espresso
the cutest little sign in a glenview starbys
this is just a glimpse of the homemade goods -
avo breaky toast with farmer’s market tomatoes & sourdough
veggie bowls - literally every meal at home
granola - essentially just an avenue to make your apartment smell amazing
ALL ACCESS > ALCOHOL
although football has been a huge part of my life the past 5 years…i’m not the biggest football fan. so heading back to iowa city for the home opener, was a little anticlimactic. not only were majority of my friends working the game, i am used to having all of the access and i have literally no access. don’t get me wrong it was greaat to see everyone (especially my nuggets), but I’ll take all access over tailgating anyday.
also, I’ll never pass up a time to get all the goods iowa city has to offer - mainly marquee.
stracciatella - now if you’re a newb to the blog, you don’t know that this is god’s gift to earth in form of carbs & cheese
salad - its an obligatory order…I’m obsessed with the pickled onions
CRUDO - (the one with greens) - parmigiano, caciocavallo, garlic, back pepper, arugula salad, prosciutto
Insanely fresh tasting, the caciocavallo was the main flavor profile for me
Boop There It Is - Garlic, basil, spinach, tomato, caciocavallo, pecorino, ricotta salata, lemon
I literally could eat this za every single day, simple enough but the flavors compliment each other perfectly.
the new kid on the block (literally) is 400 rabbits - a speakeasy in the back of La vecina. The production of the craft cocktails are seriously impressive.
my last mandatory stop while heading out of town is dash coffee - always a little sassy.
TIME FRIES BY
As yall know by now - MY NEW JOB IS working for a french fry company. something that they put on for all the zones was a potato iq …yes an entire trip based on potatoes.
we learned about our generations of fries, all about our plants, and had a cook-off. And yes, my team won. I had the opportunity to put faces to names and meet a lot of new people - some that I get to call friends!
we were also insanely spoiled on this trip. one night we were at a beautiful vineyard - with honestly one of the best meal's I’ve had. another night, we rented out a wood fired pizza place and were wined & dined all night long. also, let’s please look at this view I had every morning.
so thankful to be in a location that lets me see some of my favs - casual catchups in iowa city, all of the sporting events with my bestie’s fam, and cheering on the hawks!
finding friends is such an interesting thing - how do you even find them? thankfully there have been a couple avenues to explore & engage in some pretty awesome peeps.
mutual friend introduction that ended in an absolutely amazing spread on the rooftop.
Church friends that start at a coffee shop and end with whiskey & the deepest most meaningful conversations.
was fortunate enough to see a super talented girl sing & praise in worship.
lastly, but not least - a friendship that i’ve been super thankful for. not only is my friend awesome, but her fiance slays the kitchen. they also have some pretty bomb friends that are always down for a game night….pizza & laughs. count me in.
IOWA CITY IN THE CITY
One of the perks of living in a major city is that the big headliners come to Chicago to perform. Now two of my best friends are BIG JoBros fans. Yes…the Jonas Brothers. Although I only knew about 5 songs, I can’t deny the bros put on one hell of a concert and it was an amazing night.
The more important thing is the food…We tried out the newest place on the riverwalk - Portofino. The view is amazing, the ambiance screams Italy, and we all know I don’t stray from pizza, bubbles & bourbon.
Portofino spritz - grapefruit, prosecco
Focaccia di Stefano - Thin, Crispy Sheets Of Ligurian Focaccia Stuffed With Stracchino Cheese
Take what you think of focaccia and throw it out the window - this is like the best cheesy cracker you’ll ever have
Burrata Diavolo - Spicy Tomato Sauce, Imported Burrata, Mama Lil's Peppers, Prosciutto
This was spiccccy - the flavors were on point, but I could have used a little bit more burrata to calm down the spice. And I mean, who doesn’t want more cheese?
Due Funghi - Roasted Mushrooms, Mozzarella, Porcini Crema
I LOVE MUSHROOMS! I can’t fully explain the flavors of this za, but my mouth just started salivating if that tells you anything at all.
WTF: whiskey tango foxtrot - buffalo trace bourbon, lemon, grapefruit, amaro
Who doesn’t love a drink called WTF?