Thursday, November 11, 2010

things that make me happy: checking one off the list

if it wasn't apparent, i'm really into food. big time. i enjoy eating it, cooking it, cooking it for others and eating it with others. food makes me happy.

living in chicago i've had the opportunity to eat at some amazing restaurants (charlie trotter's, rl restaurant, shanghai terrace at the peninsula hotel). i'm constantly adding restaurants to my "you must eat here!" list. last night i was able to check one off the list: cafe ba-ba-reeba!

it was a spur of the moment thing. my friend alex was performing at a comedy theater in uptown and a few of my friends were going to support him. my friend allie and i decided to grab dinner in lincoln park before going to the show. we were walking down halsted, trying to decide where we should go, when we saw bright red neon lights spelling out "tapas bar." we didn't even have to have a discussion about it, we were getting tapas. easiest decision we had to make all night. figuring out what to order? that was a different story..

we started with a jarra of martin codax "ergo" wine and then concentrated on the tapas. it took a while to decide because everything sounded so good but we settled on:
-roast dates with bacon and apple vinaigrette
-spicy potatoes with tomato alioli
-mushroom empanada with porcini alioli
-prime sirloin, asparagas, shitakes and yukon potatoes
-scallops with bacon (they were like butter)

needless to say, we didn't have room for dessert. it was a wonderful, wonderful meal. wonderful night too since we had dinner and then a show! i would love to go back for a cooking demo.

here's to checking one off the list!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

oh, those colors

on nights like this, i miss living downtown. you miss so much by not living in the middle of the city. i had no idea that nick's fish market was moving to the mart. i had no idea federal plaza, home to the post office by my beloved mies van der rohe, was completely torn up in the middle of a renovation. i completely forgot about all the festivals and markets that converge upon daley plaza this time of year. that restaurant closed? that shop moved? it's strange how much has changed in the 2 years since i've lived in the loop.

but what i miss most is living on the 44th floor of a high rise and having the most amazing view of the sunset. this was my view circa 2007:

this last week we have had some gorgeous sunsets. when i leave work the city is awash with different colors: bright orange at first, then pink, and finally a deep purple before going black. the sky is clear except for thick clouds in the west, clouds that literally look like cotton candy. i honestly can't imagine a pinker pink. i may be on the train, sitting next to that cute guy i see every morning at the belmont stop, but all i can do is look at those colors out my window.

by the time i actually get off the train, the sun is already gone and the chilly wind hits me a teeny bit harder than it did when i got on the train 25 minutes earlier.

i'm enjoying the the sunsets while i can because after sunday (daylight savings time) my commute won't be nearly as beautiful. at least i'll have the twinkling lights of the city to keep me company as i head home.
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