Monday, April 23, 2012

A Very Foodie Weekend

I think I ate my weight in food this weekend and that makes me a very happy girl! A much-needed happy hour sister date Friday night was made oh-so-much-better with the addition of my favorite end-of-week drink, sangria. We popped over to a local wine and tapas restaurant, Vino, where we consumed copious amounts of starches. We started with a seared lettuce wedge caesar salad with a side of Spanish white anchovies. Next up were croquetas, crispy mashed potato croquettes filled with chicken and served with tomato aioli. Always a hit. We made our way down the extensive menu and ordered up patatas bravas, crispy potatoes with spicy aioli sauce and goat cheese montadito, a crostini-type tapa coated with walnuts topped with dried cranberries and a drizzle of honey. If that weren't enough, sissy and I capped off the meal with a small order of bacon-wrapped dates and cranberry-basil bread pudding with vanilla ice cream. 

Saturday night was more of a culinary adventure, as I finally made my way down to West LA to try one of the city's most-talked-about new restaurants, Picca. I started with a cocktail called Boots With the Fur, which combined pisco with green apple juice, apple brandy, orgeat (sweet syrup made from almonds, sugar, and rose water), falernum syrup (a Caribbean cocktail staple), and ginger for an herbaceous twist on a Peruvian classic. It was delish and a great complement to the anticuchos, tiraditos, and causas we consumed (sorry, no pics).

After dinner, I insisted on trying out SnoBar, a cotton candy/shaved ice hybrid that had one of the most interesting textures I've felt/tasted. I opted for the taro and rose flavors, which looked just as beautiful as they tasted. The taro was quite multidimensional and tasted almost buttery. The rose was sweet and fragrant and the perfect end to a foodie field trip!

Sunday was also a treat, as I spent the afternoon sunning on Leo and Lily's (Woodland Hills) outdoor patio. The Mediterranean-inspired menu beckoned me towards the shakshuka, poached eggs floating in a sauce of tomatoes, chili peppers, and onions. Honestly, I love any dish that lets me dunk fresh bread into sauce. Can't go wrong! It also helped that I was accompanied by my very favorite 21-month-old. He makes everything delicious!

And, finally, Sunday evening was spent at one of my new favorite haunts, Aroma Coffee and Tea (remember?), where the pastries are huge and the ambiance stirs with LA's most interesting cast of characters. A quaint little cottage-style cafe with a garden patio and frothy tea lattes? I'm in. All day, every day. Was your weekend chock-full of culinary surprises? Do tell!

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Merci beaucoup!

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