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A Little Bit About a Lot of Things

A lifestyle blog with a focus on my food adventures

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The Original Chinatown Ice Cream Factory is a family run business, they’ve been making ice cream for the last 30 years. The little shop is packed, so many people wanting to try out some of their unique flavors like Don Tot, Pandan, Lychee and Durian. Check out a full list of their flavors here.

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I found it amusing that pistachio is listed under the “exotic” flavors, but what they heck! Wasn’t really in love with it, but we still ate it.

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My favorite was the almond cookie, Chinese almond cookies from the famous Fung Wong Bakery soaked and blended into the ice cream. I could have eaten a pint of this in one sitting!

What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

Original Chinatown Ice Cream Factory

65 Bayard Street, New York, NY

http://www.chinatownicecreamfactory.com

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In an oversize world (I think of my iPhone 6 plus) do you remember when tiny used to be so much cooler? Sweet Buttons Desserts carries bite sized cupcakes, perfect for when you just want a little sugar fix (except for me, it’s never little). My logic is that since they are so small, 4 little ones = 1 regular sized cupcake. The store is white with a smattering of purple buttons decorating the walls and ceiling.

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(Starting at 12 and going clockwise) ($1.50) Vanilla: vanilla crumb, vanilla swiss buttercream; Pistachio: pistachio crumb, pistachio nut swiss buttercream, ground pistachio; Lemon Curd: vanilla crumb, lemon curd, lemon swiss buttercream, lemon drizzle; Nutella: chocolate crumb or vanilla crumb, nutella filling, nutella buttercream. The lemon curd was my favorite of the bunch, the most memorable and most flavorful.

In addition to cupcakes, they sell desserts in jars and cookies, check out their full menu here.

Sweet Buttons Desserts

84 Rivington Street, New York, NY

http://www.sweetbuttonsdesserts.com/

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We took the water taxi to Brooklyn. It’s such a great idea – no hour long, hot and sweaty subway ride for us! We hopped on near the South Street Seaport area and took a leisurely cruise to Brooklyn – it was the second stop and it drops you right off at the Fairway Market. We bought the all day pass ($30) which gives you unlimited rides all day. Baked is just a short walk from the market. There were far too many good looking things to only choose one, so we sampled a little bit of everything!!

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Grasshopper ($3.25) has a classic brownie base and is layered with crème de menthe and topped with a minty chocolate ganache.

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Good Morning Sunshine ($3.25) It’s totally ok to eat this for breakfast right? I mean, there is cereal in it…

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PB&J Bar ($3.25) raspberry jam and peanut butter atop a crisp shortbread crust. Topped with a sweet crumble. This one was my favorite of the bars that we picked up.

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Peanut Butter Krispy ($3.25) Dark chocolate ganache topping and peanut butter milk chocolate center on a bed of caramelized crisped rice cereal. I liked how the rice cereal wasn’t brick hard in this bar and loved the peanut butter and chocolate combination.

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The Brookster ($4) is a deep dark brownie base tart filled with chocolate chunk cookie batter. 1 word. AMAZING! Have to learn how to make these at home! (Although I probably shouldn’t)

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Oatmeal cookie ($2.75) coconut, dried cherries, pecans & white chocolate. I loved the new twist on this cookie, I would never have expected to put cherries in mine, but now, I swap out the raisins every time! So delicious!

IMG_9107Lemon lime bar ($3.25) creamy light lemon lime custard atop a golden coconut graham crust, dusted with powdered sugar.

Baked

359 Van Brunt Street, Brooklyn, NY

http://bakednyc.com

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Robert's Maine Grill 1

I frequently go up to Maine – I hit up Freeport for the outlet shopping, Ogunquit for the lobster rolls, Portland for the views and then Kittery for more outlet shopping before coming home. I’ve been to Bob’s Clam Hut across the street and have always wanted to try Robert’s Maine Grill, but it never worked out timing wise. The restaurant can be recognized by the large lighthouse out front – a nod to the Quarterdeck, the previous restaurant standing in this space.

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When you step inside, you are greeted by all things Maine. Robert’s has a marketplace with a selection of clothing, specialty food items and those great door mats made from old lobster trap float rope.

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From the road, you’d never expect to have such a beautiful view of Spruce Creek, it’s the perfect backdrop for your meal.

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Robert’s serves coastal Maine cuisine with a focus on the freshest seafood available and serves exclusively Maine beers on draft. The lit up road signs above the bar are an art installation and they help communicate Maine to out of towners.

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The space upstairs is open and bright, they even have an outdoor patio that is great in the warmer weather.

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We are greeted by Lisa, our server, who took really great care of us. Instead of bread, Robert’s serves cheese and crackers. Tonight’s spread was a honey dijon cream cheese.

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I opted to start with a blackberry lime rickey while I looked over the menu.

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We took some recommendations from Lisa and started with the lobster sliders ($7 each or 3 for $19). After having a lobster roll on a biscuit, I’m not sure I can go back to a hot dog bun… I was wondering how the biscuit would hold up, and it ended up being perfect – held together until the last bite!

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Ever since I went to Vermont, I’ve been in love with cheese curds. Robert’s fries them up an serves them with a side of marinara to share with the table. Their version was surprisingly light!

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At Lisa’s suggestion, I had the grilled sea scallops ($25) that came with rainbow chard, corn and chorizo. This dish was a perfect choice – a  really nice saltiness to the dish with a little kick from the chorizo. The scallops were perfectly grilled, they melted in your mouth.

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We tried the taco special – grilled shrimp tacos with a smoked avocado crema topped with a corn and black bean salad. There were so many wonderful things about this dish – a little smokey, a little salty – it was a very well put together dish.

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I was completely full from my meal but felt like I owed it to myself to try out some of the delicious desserts. You know, for research purposes 😉 All the desserts on the menu are available as a full size for $7.50 or in a “bite size” portion for $3.50. We started with the lemon bar with raspberry coulis.

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How can you come to Maine and not try the blueberry crumble a la mode?

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The carrot cake was enormous and came topped with fresh whipped cream. It had a layer of walnuts that was really quite nice.

Disclaimer: I was invited to be a guest at Robert’s Maine Grill. My meal was provided complimentary. All opinions are my own.

Robert’s Maine Grill

326 Route 1, Kittery, Maine

http://www.robertsmainegrill.com

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I’ve become so used to pizza that can be made in 90 seconds, it seemed insane when they told me that my pizza would take 10 minutes (wait for my pizza? What?!?!) …when really, the insane part is that 10 minutes for a meal isn’t really all that long. In a world of 140 characters and on demand everything, I realize that I have become very impatient. We ate lunch at the South Street Seaport (#Seaportsmorg) outlet of Pizza Moto, where they make Neopolitan style pizzas in handmade ovens.

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My 10″ pie comes with tomato, fresh mozzarella & mushroom. You can really taste the quality in the ingredients. Other choices are margherita with tomato, basil, fresh mozzarella and olive oil or pepperoni with tomato and fresh mozzarella. I was starving so I devoured this pizza on my own, but it could certainly be enough for two!

Pizza Moto

Fulton Street (Between South and Front Street)

http://pizzamoto.com

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Petee’s Pie Company is located on Delancy on the lower east side. I fell in love with the bakery the minute I walked in. Simple, cozy, authentic. Petra “Petee” Paredez grew up in bakeries and makes her pies with the best ingredients available. They use organic flour and grass fed butter from New York State and local ingredients whenever they can.

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Chess Pie is a classic southern dish, and the Lemon Chess Pie ($5) is a twist on a classic, with freshly squeezed lemon juice and a little zest.  It was sweet and tart – so decadent!

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The traditional Chocolate Chess Pie ($5) is made with eggs, sugar, butter and vanilla. Both pies were dense and delicious – they’d be great served up with some whipped cream and a warm beverage!

Petee’s Pie Company

61 Delancy Street, New York, NY

http://peteespie.com

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If you live in Brookline, you know Rami’s. Since opening in 1990, Rami’s has been serving up falafel to the community, with a recipe Rami brought over from Jerusalem. Recently, Rami’s son Haim opened up his own restaurant next door, Pure Cold Press, a casual place where you can grab a healthy bite to eat. The look and feel of Pure Cold Press is a complete 180 of his father’s space. The restaurant that seats 35 feels spacious and bright. Reclaimed wood lines the walls and the bright green chairs add that needed pop of color. In addition to fresh juices, the restaurant offers sandwiches and a salad station, similar in style to Sweet Green.

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I’m not going to lie, green juice scares me a little bit. A little too healthy for my liking… but while I was in, I tried a sample of Pure Cold Press’ green juice and it was delicious, even a little sweet! I’m not going to go crazy and start buying gallons of green juice, but I appreciated trying something different and new and it changed my opinion on green juice.

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I picked up the morning rooster (right) and the zen juice (left) to drink at home. The morning rooster is a blend of orange, grapefruit and lemon juices with a hint of cayenne. I like to start my day with a glass of orange juice, morning rooster is a nice alternative, just a little bit brighter – a little sweet, a little tart, really tasty. The zen juice is a blend of watermelon and lemon juices with a hint of cayenne. A really nice light and clean tasting option, perfect for a hot summer day.

Pure Cold Press

326 Harvard Street, Brookline, MA

www.purecoldpress.com

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Good Ones Cafe Art Science 1

Last week, the Good Ones hosted a fabulous honey themed party at Cafe Art Science in Cambridge. The restaurant is the brainchild of Harvard science professor David Edwards, inventor of the WikiPearl. Check out their bar for some really cool drinks – think uniquely flavored ice cubes and vapor drinks!

The evening included passed appetizers, specialty cocktails, a fun instagram backdrop and a question on the whiteboard to get the conversation started. When was your first kiss?

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Tonight’s featured guest was Noah Wilson-Rich, Ph.D., Founder & Chief Scientific Officer, The Best Bees Company. I met Noah at a honey dinner a while back at Cuisine en Locale, where he invited me to come down and check out his bees. I love chatting with Noah, every time I learn something new about bees – they are fascinating!

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Noah brought a few friends with him to chat with (and educate) guests about bees. Pictured above, Sophie Chaney with The Best Bees Company.

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Sam Jennings with The Best Bees Company.

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(Pictured L-R) Lillian Harden (featured artist) and Steve Osemwenkhae (featured videographer). Lillian was showcasing her kissing booth, where guests could make their own magnetic kissing video!

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(Pictured L-R) Iva Nikolau (VP of Business and Development at The Good Ones) Scott Weiman (PhD candidate at Harvard University).

The dress code for this month’s signature party was yellow and white to go with the honeycomb theme!

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(Pictured L-R) Eric Kramer, Vice President at B&L Associates and Lizzie Schultz Mcguire, Senior Event Coordinator at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

A Good Ones membership gives you access to 3 social experiences each month. It’s a great opportunity to get out there and meet some interesting new people!

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Ben Raynak – Contracts Manager at Akebia Therapeutics, Inc.

So…who are the Good Ones? Members are musicians, artists, entrepreneurs, students and  professionals! The conversations are always interesting and the events are at the hottest spots in Boston.

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Lubia Semirog, Freelance Marketing Consultant.

The Good Ones was started by Co-Founders Carolyn Meenan and Jennifer Brooke. They have a formula for introducing people who have common interests.  Let them introduce you to someone new at their next event!

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(Pictured L-R) Janet Wu, Carolyn Meenan, Josh Butkus.

So how are these events different than other “networking” events? Well, first off, there aren’t any weird, awkward moments with Bob from accounting. There are no name tags, members are from all different professions and have a wide range of interests. Maybe you work in Advertising and John is an artist, but you both have a love for rock climbing, The Real Housewives and scotch!

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Amy Qiu, Financial Advisor at Morgan Stanley.

What kinds of events do the Good Ones have? There is something for everyone: lunch time power hours, scotch tastings after work, chef battles on Sundays and more. Check out some of my previous coverage of the Good Ones events by using the search bar to the right.

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Pictured above, Chulli Ulloa.

Be yourself. Be open minded. Meet some amazing new people (I certainly have). Are you a Good One?

Good Ones Cafe Art Science 19(Pictured L-R) Eric Kramer and Janet Wu, Anchor at WHDH-TV.

For more information or to join the wait list, check out the Good Ones website.

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IMG_8870I know you’ve heard about Ramen Burger by now, well this is the original. We had heard about it before, and even passed it up last time we were in New York and at Smorgasburg, but there was no line and there was no waiting at the South Street Seaport location, so we scooped up our chance to try one.

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We’ve tried other ones, and we weren’t really impressed – we liked the idea, but the ramen ‘bun’ just didn’t stand up. Well, that’s because they are imitation ramen burgers. The real ramen burger held up while it was in your hands but melted away when you took a bite (must be those fresh ramen noodles). While we found the burger in general to be a bit on the greasy side, it was definitely satisfying our craving.

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The burger is USDA Prime ground beef chuck and it comes with a shoyu glaze that sets the burger apart from others. I had mine with cheese and enjoyed every last bite.

Ramen Burger

Fulton Street (between Front and South), New York, NY

http://ramenburger.com

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When we were in New York, we decided to meet up with an old co-worker of mine for sushi. With 4 locations, we met her at the Tribeca location – but Sushi of Gari can also be found on 78th Street, Columbus Ave. and West 46th Street. We arrived around 7 and the place was pretty empty, but by 7:30, it was packed. It seemed to be a real neighborhood restaurant, with familiar regulars and families with young kids. It would be in your best interest to make a reservation!

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I ordered the spicy shrimp tempura (top) ($8.50) and the spicy tuna (bottom) ($9). The sushi came out quickly and it was delicious – we devoured it! In addition to sushi, the menu offers a few soups, a handful of salads and some appetizers. The restaurant is small with only about a dozen or so tables inside – we got stuck next to the door to the kitchen, so there was always a lot of commotion near our table. Other than that, the service was excellent, they took our order right away and the food came out quickly.

Sushi of Gari

130 W Broadway, New York, NY

http://www.sushiofgari.com

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