Joys of Fall….

Remember those blanks in the calendar I once professed my love and excitement for?

Well those blanks somehow dwindled…. were too few cherished evenings.  In their place have been the joys of fall.

Joys of fall…. something I don’t normally say.

I mean.. I know what comes after fall in Minnesota. What those tumbling leaves mean. Those fire red leaves, flashing at me to book my beach vacation now!

Fall to me means winter is coming….

But this year something is different. I’m taking in all the fall activities without that grain of salt or nagging feeling of “I know you’re coming snow….”

Like Fall Funday, which friend Kbail plans every year.  This year a tour of breweries and “hop off the light rail spots.”

Like Bang Brewery.

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At Bang Brewery you can apparently find men posing in the door way…. who wouldn’t want to go there 🙂

Joking.

Like all the plaid you can wear required.

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Post Fall Funday, do you know what is required?

Um… Bacon.

Did you know all the things you can do with bacon? Or the types or meals you can add bacon to? (psst even vegan bacon :))

Like this Praline Bacon from Heyday!!

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When fall comes around, I’m over here throwing bacon in and on everything… like salads, pastas and my brussel sprouts. For other ways to use bacon, check out this article

Do you have a favorite fall ingredient?

AND Are you out there enjoying all Fall has to offer? If not, get to it!

Snow is coming…. shhhhh 🙂

Up the Funk.

While I am a steadfast non-rule breaker… I sometimes fall into the old adage of “some rules are meant to be broken.”

However that typically only applies to food. Food rules. Is there such a thing? I mean I’ve never gone to culinary school. I’m not trained and my techniques in the kitchen are… not chef like.. but I eat.

I know when food tastes the way it should.. I know when food is mediocre.

How? Because I eat a lot and wide varieties of foods. So I’m not sure if there really are food rules, but I do know when classics are taken for a spin. When things get funky and the ante goes up.

Which you can absolutely find at Nighthawks.

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Like bacon. Scallion. Kimchi pancakes.  HUGE chunks of bacon.

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I’d say the rules or the funk have been turned up in this case.

And foot long wieners come rolling out, piled with a mass of ingredients. We pretty much ordered this out of fascination. But it had to be ordered.

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AND the chicken. My first nibble into the fried chicken wars of 2015…

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Delish. Crispy on the outside, not drippy greasy and juicy on the inside. The flavor, the spice, so on point. We tried the Kingfield spice.

My only disappointment? Not ordering the burger.  I sat at the counter and watched dozens of these prepared in front of me. They called to me, each and every one of them.

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Hey lonely little burger……

Next time.

Yes….. next time.

Have you been?

Friday Favs #2

Happy happy weekend! I don’t know about you, but I’m so ready for a break 🙂

Before I’m off to happy hour, here are a few of my favs from the week.

Linking up with Katie, Heather and Claire!!

1.Total Wine. Have you been? To the Mecca of wine and bewilderment. Yes. After a rough work day, a day of brain shutting-down-ness, I finally made it here. I wandered the aisles in awe. Wine, aka god’s grapes, everywhere. Its walls of unending eye (wine) candy.

I walked those aisles in awe, bewilderment and wonder.

Ok…. I might have a wine problem.

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2.  This bench in South Minneapolis. It reminds me, 18 months ago I wasn’t here. I was in a different city, state and stage. I’m thrilled to be in Minneapolis now, but who knows where in another 18 months I could be…

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3. The new passport arrived. My last ten months with an expired passport made me feel naked. But its here! And this just means our Vietnam trip is that much closer

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4. These vegan double chocolate cookies. Yes I said vegan, and they’re from Angel Food Bakery and Coffee Bar. How did I not know about this place? If you didn’t tell me these were vegan, I wouldn’t have known…

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5.These stuffed pork chops. Pretty sure more than one person was disappointed they didn’t make it over for dinner Tuesday night.. chops stuffed with bacon, apples, onions and walnuts. Yum.

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My Happy Place

The boxes are mostly unpacked. The pictures leaning against the wall crying to be hung. The kitchen is somewhat organized, though I can’t remember where I put anything.

I keep going to the left for the trash, though the trash can is definitely under the sink.

We are getting to know our new place. And by we, I mean the roommate and I. Neither of us have had roommates in quite some time, however with all this space and the mutual desire to up our travel budgets, here we are 🙂

Despite my inability to navigate our kitchen, the kitchen is still my happy place. Where I go immediately after a rough day. Where I go to show my love for family and friends. Where I find my calm.

Lets just say I am enjoying my extra counter space! And a live in person to cook for again.

I played around with this recipe a bit, and treated us to a move in meal!

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And because this meal was such a treat, I’m linking up with Becky.

HOW HAVE YOU TREATED YOURSELF THIS WEEK? WHERE IS YOUR HAPPY PLACE?

Take Me Back: Vail

Vail was like living in a picture.

A picturesque European painting.

I truly felt as though I was back in Europe.

My pictures can never do it justice.  Vail was jaw dropping, amazing, stunning, not even describable.

We stayed at The Tivoli, which you must stay at during your next trip to Vail 🙂 The staff was amazing, the breakfast spread delicious, and I was even treated to a spotting of the celebrity dog, Speedy (Speed). I may or may not have fed him a few strips of bacon….

Stopping at Loaded Joe’s for coffee every morning is a must. And the best post bike ride sandwich has to be at Big Bear Bistro.

Me on a bike, for the first time in like 10 years, at over 8,000 Ft above sea level…. pure comedy 🙂

I’m already dreaming of planning a trip back to experience this wondrous place in the winter 🙂

Have you been to Vail?

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The Perfect Brunch

When friends at ProFlowers mentioned a series on spring brunch….. how could I not join in the fun? We all know I’m obsessed with the meal. Its a weekly blog topic for me basically. So why not join in!.

To start, check out the inspiration, ProFlowers’ post on the Spring Brunch Checklist here.

Now, what makes my perfect spring brunch?

Lets start with the table. Fresh spring flowers are a must. Last week I had fresh flowers in every room. Overkill? Never 🙂

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Next, brunch requires a cocktail. And my favorite, the Bloody Mary of course.

The perfect spring brunch would have a Bloody Mary cook off! (Drink off?!) A little FoodNetwork Chopped action at brunch? Why not! A Bloody Mary competition, who can make the best, most spicy, most outlandish Bloody Mary.

Cocktails and activities, who’s in?!

My perfect brunch meal? It would look a little something like this:

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The Side of bacon, a must.  Paired with grilled salmon and a veggie hash.

Finally the most important ingredient to my perfect spring brunch.. the perfect company. Friends who order you that second Bloody Mary, friends who cannot wait to remind you of your weekend escapades, friends who are there to support an important upcoming week at work…

Flowers, cocktails and activities, a side of bacon, and great conversation with friends. What more could you ask for?

WHAT MAKES YOUR PERFECT SPRING BRUNCH?

(this is not a sponsored post)

Celebrate Proper 2

Happy Tuesday! Need a few birthday celebrating tips?

1) Find a friend who picks out the best cards:

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So poignant, as Olive is a humper. Yep I said it. She humps. We are still working on this behavioral issue…

2) Check out a new to you Brewery:

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3) Indulge in the food truck outside:

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4) Play giant Jenga and perhaps stay for 5… or 6 hours:

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5) Once having your fill of beer, head to 1029 bar for lobster mac and cheese. Annnnd put some bacon on it.

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Four of us shared this, it did not stand a chance.

And that is what I like to call a proper celebration 🙂

Dutch Boy Burger

Happy Monday! How about starting this short week off with a little food porn? Yeah I said it. The P word…

Our traipsing through Brooklyn could not be complete without a good burger. And I mean a throw back to the diner, black and white checkered floors, no pretense burgers.

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Enter Dutch Boy Burger on Franklin Avenue, Crown Heights.

I had to go with the classic, and of course add the thick cut bacon. Perfect on a rainy New York day, when your feet are tired and your stomach rumbling….. even though it shouldn’t be, as you demolished an extra large Cajun meal the night before…

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Again, enter comment, not sure I can fit this in my mouth….

I know, I know, TWSS…… theme of our foodie weekend I guess.

But really, look at this guy.

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Am I further proving why I needed a veggie cleanse after this trip? Really check out Dutch Boy Burger, the milkshakes are also divine.

Try any place new this weekend?

MKE in MPLS

 A little piece of Milwaukee landed in Minneapolis over the weekend….

So of course I had all the brunch essentials waiting…. A little brie, fruit, an entire package of bacon, fresh flowers, and a cheese magazine.

Fresh flowers are a necessary component of hosting weekend guests.  Fresh flowers are also a necessary pick me up when the condo you rented three weeks ago goes on the market. With the way the condo market is going, I may be the only person ever who moves 4 times in 4 months…..

But I digress…

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An entire package of bacon is necessary, because its bacon. That time I gave up meat, I still craved the bacon. Nothing else, only bacon.

 Enough said.

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A little trip to Saks off 5th is also necessary. If you really need an explanation…..

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Hi G 🙂

One must try on over-sized fur hats…. Especially when the silver fox suggests it… (confession: I like a little silver fox…..)

Where do the single ones go out? Note to self: find silver fox bar…

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And French Fries. Who says no to French Fries?

G and I explored this city, more of our weekend to come.

What did you do over the weekend?

Does anyone else buy themselves fresh flowers?

Wise Acre Brunchin

When you’ve had a weekend of restaurants strikeouts..

And I mean a second trip to a new favorite, which failed to live up to its first round..

When you are starving and up for plain old bar food because stop one failed to deliver..

When said plain old bar food tastes the way bathroom cleaner smells…

No exaggeration necessary. I should have known by the slimy, dead looking asparagus..

One is in desperate need of a restaurant redemption..

Cue Wise Acre Eatery. A place were literally their farm is showing up on your table. A place where vegetables taste the way they should and even a vegetarian would devour their bacon. And yes, you can buy it by the pound. (I strongly considered this, despite my red meat vacation…)

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O hey buddy.

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Order the CSA Hash, you will not be disappointed.

Or the egg sandwich.

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Or anything else. Go, you won’t be disappointed.