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WIAW: Definition of Summer

12 Jul

Happy Wednesday! I feel like I say that at the beginning of every post but a day when I have some time to blog is a happy day 🙂 Today I’m sharing a smorgasbord of different meals and drinks that I have enjoyed so far this summer. Between our fantastic CSA (which I plan to cover in a future post) and farmers market trips, we have definitely been embracing summer foods.

Maggie mcflys tuna salad

Quite possibly one of my favorite salads ever, the Ahi Tuna salad from Maggie McFly’s 

Cheese plate bday

I had to show off my favorite lobster cutting board. This cheese plate is from my birthday celebration 🙂

birthday cake 2017

Alex made me this wonderful birthday cake too!

engagement party chipotle

Dan’s cousins engagement party was catered by Chipotle which is the best idea ever

Stony creek beer

We visited Stony Creek Brewery on my birthday and it was the perfect day!

birthday lobster

My birthday dinner request was a lobster roll so Dan bought a few lobsters and made them for us!

Apps brian and natasha

This past Friday we had Brian and Natasha over for dinner. We enjoyed fresh salsa from Fairweather Acres along with homemade guac and some cheese and crackers. I love me some apps!

Caprese salad

I also made a caprese salad with tomatoes from our CSA, fresh mozz, and basil from our garden

brian and natasha dinner

Our dinner included a little bit of everything: grilled chicken, steak, kielbasa, potatoes, squash, broccoli, and the caprese salad

buffalo chicken wrap

Dan had a prior commitment on Monday night so I was on my own for dinner. I made Brittany’s buffalo chicken wrap along with a salad consisting of tomatoes, cucumbers, fresh mozz, and basil.  

burrito bowl

Dan had another meeting last night so I made myself a burrito bowl with quinoa, chicken, black beans, corn, avocado, green onion, salsa, and plain greek yogurt. It was delish!

That’s all for today folks! I’m ready to tackle the rest of this week and relax as much as possible this weekend 🙂 Have a great rest of the week!

Five Things Friday: Summer Lovin’

23 Jun

Happy happy Friday! I feel like this week dragged on a bit but that might be because we have very few plans this weekend and I’m so pumped to just relax with the hubby! It was definitely a busy week and I have a huge piled of unfolded laundry calling my name this evening (ugh). I figured I would share five random thoughts from the past week (or two).

  • We signed up for our first CSA with Fair Weather Acres farm and our first pickup was this past Sunday. We received so many fresh and delicious veggies which allowed us to be a bit more creative with our cooking this week. Our box included: 2 lbs of spinach, 1 head of lettuce, 1 quart of strawberries, 1 bunch of swiss chard, 1 bunch of radishes, 1 head of broccoli, garlic scapes, and bok choy. I loved everything included but I think my favorite were the strawberries and the garlic scapes. We made two new recipes with some of the veggies we received, a garlic scape and spinach frittata as well as swiss chard and garlic scape pasta. Both were yummy!

frittata

swiss chard and garlic scape pasta

  • My cousin Daniel graduated from high school on Tuesday and we were fortunate enough to be able to attend. He gave a speech during the ceremony which obviously had everyone in our family in tears. We went out for a wonderful dinner at Bertucci’s after too. It was a great evening!

Daniel graduation

  • Last Saturday went down as one of the top five days of this year for me so far. Natasha, Jenna, and I attended our friend Miko’s bridal shower which was SO much fun. We were nonstop laughing the entire time due to the very creative and hilarious games that her bridal party had planned. After the shower, Jenna and I met up with the boys in Granby at Lost Acres Vineyard where we enjoyed some wine and a fantastic cheese plate. After that we ventured over to Brignole Vineyards, also in Granby, and had a really fun wine tasting (the guy giving our tasting was hilarious) and some fabulous sangria. All of that wine meant for an early evening catnap but we managed to rally and make it out for our friend Kevin’s birthday. It was truly an amazing day!

Miko's bridal shower

Lost Acres cheese and wine

  • Salads have been my jam lately. Ever since returning from our cruise, I have been craving salads and fresh veggies ALL the time. I have particularly been enjoying my current lunch salad which includes strawberries and goat cheese which is such a fantastic combo. If you haven’t tried it, you should!
Firehouse Subs salad

First salad from Firehouse Subs, sooo good!

chicken fajita salad

The chicken was way too spicy, even for me! Less chili powder next time for sure 

Strawberry goat cheese salad

  • Father’s Day was filled with so much delicious food and lots of sunshine. We treated my Dad to lobster rolls at Jessica’s Garden in Marlborough (highly recommend!) and then we visited Dan’s parents for dinner at their new lake house in Ashford. It was a wonderful end to a great weekend!

jessicas garden lobster roll

Father's day 2017 1

Life has been pretty great lately but I am excited to have very few plans on the radar this weekend. There is a bottle of Rosé and some grilling on the agenda and that’s the way I like my summer weekends!

Market Place Kitchen & Bar – Avon, CT

17 May

A couple of weeks ago I was invited to attend a blogger event at Market Place Kitchen & Bar in Avon, CT. I hadn’t attended an event in a while due to being crazy busy (hence the slight delay on this post as well) so I jumped at the chance to try out this new restaurant.

Market Place Kitchen & Bar describes themselves as a “Modern American restaurant” and they also have locations in Woodbury and Danbury, CT as well as a location at Mount Snow in Vermont. They put their emphasis on using locally sourced ingredients whenever possible which also allows Executive Chef Roy Kalil to be very creative with his dishes.

Marketplace 1

How pretty is that drink? Pictured: The Parisian cocktail and an Ahi Tuna Tartare Philo Cup

Marketplace 6

Executive Chef Roy provided some great info about the goals of Market Place as a restaurant

We enjoyed several of those creative dishes throughout the event, including croquettes, philo cups, deviled eggs, and watermelon kabobs. I will let the photos speak for themselves as everything was incredibly delicious and I really can’t even put into words how fresh each dish was. If I had a choose a favorite, I would say the smoked salmon deviled eggs, but are you really surprised by that?

marketplace 2

Ahi Tuna Tartare Philo Cups

Marketplace 4

Watermelon Kabobs with goat feta cheese and fresh mint

Marketplace 5

Smoked salmon deviled eggs

Marketplace 11

Wild Mushroom Risotto Croquettes

In addition to the food we tasted, we were also provided with three different cocktails to try. Each drink was so unique but my favorite was the frozen Moscow mule which was incidentally my first ever Moscow mule. It was refreshing and so smooth and would be perfect on a sweltering day like today.

Marketplace 7

New Age Margarita with salt foam which is my new favorite thing in the world 😉

Marketplace 8

Frozen Moscow Mule.. I could really go for one of these right now

We also had the pleasure of enjoying a mixology demonstration by one of the bartenders which was so much fun. They clearly take great pride in their cocktails and that was evident by the amount of effort that went into each drink that she prepared.

Marketplace 10

Working her magic!

 

Marketplace 9

MP Manhattan – looks so tasty!

The atmosphere and decor at Market Place is absolute perfection. I was in love with the wall of wine bottles and the beautiful wood that was used throughout the restaurant.

Marketplace 3

I want this in my house. 

Dan and I both walked out of the event exclaiming that we cannot wait to return. The vibe is new and fresh with food that is unique and delicious.

Note: All food and drinks were provided at no cost. As always, all opinions are my own.

Holiday Stroll in West Hartford

6 Dec

Happy Tuesday! Today I’m sharing a sentence by picture recap of a fabulous blogger event that I attended this past Thursday evening in West Hartford. This was hosted for us as part a way to participate in the Holiday Stroll that West Hartford hosts each year on the first Thursday in December. I had no idea that this event happens every year and it was right up my Christmas-obsessed alley. I brought my friend Hanna as my guest and it happened to be her birthday that day too!

We began the evening at Max Burger where we enjoyed some delicious appetizers and drinks. My personal favorite were definitely the candied bacon “lollipops” and I will let that photo speak for itself. Max Burger was great and I will definitely be picking up some gift cards (as should you!) as Christmas gifts this year as I would love to share the deliciousness with my family and friends!

max-burger-1

max-burger-2

max-burger-3

max-gift-card

The next stop on our stroll was at another favorite of mine, Cook Shop Plus. This store definitely warms my newly cooking obsessed heart. I loved all of the holiday items they had in stock and we were also able to enjoy some incredible hot apple cider.

cookshop-plus-mixer

conard-high-school-jazz-band

The Conard High School Jazz Band was there playing Christmas carols too 

BK & Co is a women’s boutique that was next on our list and I wanted to try on everything in the store! They also provided some bites to eat and cocktails as well.

bkco

Lux Bond & Green is a fantastic jewelry store that I could literally spend hours browsing around in. We had so much fun trying on the unique pieces that they had to offer which were absolutely stunning. Hanna was the perfect hand model for us! 🙂

lux-bond-1

lux-bond-2

Look at all that bling!

We ended our stroll with a stop at Savoy Pizzeria which is a relatively new pizza restaurant in West Hartford. Savoy Pizzeria’s specialty is craft pizza and also craft beer. We were gifted a growler of one of the delicious beers that they had on tap that evening.

It was a delightful evening filled with so much holiday cheer and it really got all of us into the spirit. Thank you to Kat from A Little Bird Told Me for hosting another excellent event!

Disclaimer: I was invited to this blogger event by the marketing company and management that represents these establishments.  All opinions are entirely my own. 

 

 

Memorial Day Weekend 2016

2 Jun

Happy happy Thursday! A three day week for me  (Monday AND Tuesday off) means that this week is flying by! I figured I would do a quick recap of all of the fun that was had this past weekend. It was truly filled with the best food, wine, and even better friends and family!

Friday evening was spent at Cassidy Hill Vineyard and then the Diamond with no pictures taken (oops!). I guess I was just really excited for the long weekend.

Saturday we attended a cookout at our friend Jim’s house where we had some delicious food and I enjoyed a couple cans of Lila Rosé which was really good, and I love that it comes in a can. We also attended a neighborhood pig roast with Dan’s parents and our friend Christian which was cool because we got to meet some of our new neighbors.

Lila Rose

Jim's cookout

Sunday afternoon was spent at Still Hill Brewery with Robbie and Shivani with no pictures taken again. Sunday evening we were at Dan’s parents house for a little cookout and Alex joined us as well. We had a fun ride on their neighbor’s golf cart too!

golf cart ride

I also took very few pictures on Monday as the parade was cancelled due to the weather but we still attended a cookout hosted by the fire department which was fun and we got to spend some time with our flower girl and ring bearer who we definitely don’t see enough!

Fire dept picnic

I took Tuesday (in addition to Friday) off to give myself a mini-vacation. I spent the afternoon with Natasha at Gouveia Vineyards in Wallingford which is absolutely breathtaking and a perfect way to spend a day off. We ended the day with dinner at our house with Brian and Natasha and we enjoyed salmon, grilled chicken, potato salad, and cole slaw. SO yummy!

natasha and i gouveia

gouveia view

gouveia tasting

dinner on patio

It was quite a fun weekend and I was pretty tired by the time bedtime rolled around on Tuesday but it was well worth it. The busyness continues through this week and this weekend as we are heading to NJ for my cousin Maggie’s college graduation party which will be fun!

I have some fun posts in my head which I’m hoping to have the time to sit down and write so stay tuned 🙂

 

 

 

3 Reasons Why Rooftop 120 is a Must Visit

27 May

Happy Friday! I figured today would be an excellent time to tell you guys why I think Rooftop 120 in Glastonbury is a must visit, especially since we are on the cusp of a long weekend and the weather is supposed to be pretty nice. I attended a blogger event here a while ago and I’m excited to tell you guys all about it! I have definitely mentioned Rooftop 120 in the past and I actually attended their very first blogger event but I can’t help but continue to gush about how great this place is.

  • The cocktails are out of this world (especially when Tyler is making them!).

We had the pleasure of enjoying several different cocktails which appear on their menu. Tyler, their bar manager, is always coming up with new and creative drink ideas and it’s so fun to see (and sample) his creations! My personal favorite is the 120 Watermelon, which is made with Tito’s vodka, lemonade, watermelon puree, and fresh watermelon. It is so refreshing and would be perfect to enjoy on a hot, sunny day like today.

rooftop tyler 1

rooftop tyler 2

rooftop drink 1

rooftop drink 2

  • The views are absolutely incredible.

I love going to Rooftop because it honestly doesn’t feel like you are in the center of Glastonbury. Being up there removes you from the busy hustle and bustle of town and makes you relax and really take in the atmosphere. There are many Friday evenings where we just head up there for a quick drink before dinner to just decompress from a long week.

rooftop120 view1

rooftop120 sign

  • Last but definitely not least, the food is always superb and SO flavorful.

At the blogger event, we were able to try many different dishes which really shows the depth of talent that Chef Xavier Santiago has, since they all presented such different styles and flavors. My favorite was the Smoked Salmon Rillete which had the perfect balance between the smokiness of the salmon and the creaminess of the sour cream with some tang from the blood orange vinaigrette thrown in for good measure.

rooftop crostini

rooftop salmon rillete

rooftop pasta

Just based on speaking with the owner and learning more about what they have to offer, it is clear that they put a lot of time and effort into making sure that the entire experience is phenomenal, from the food to the drinks and even the space itself. I highly recommend making a visit to the Rooftop this summer and seeing what they have to offer!

Disclaimer: I received the food and drink mentioned above complimentary. They were given to me in exchange for an honest review.  I was not compensated for this post and all thoughts and opinions are my own.