“…so what now???”

I was asked this tonight, during dinner. What do I want now?….

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Let’s first talk about what we ate tonight…. we were at The Local, one of my favorites in my area, which I’m sure you have heard me rage about on my facebook, twitter, and probably even on here (although I don’t do quite as many food posts on here anymore)

We started off with the Salt & Pepper Calamari with pickled peppers, ginger salsa, and cilantro…. which was delicious! I kind of wish they didn’t have the sauce on the bottom of the plate though which makes some of it kind of soggy after awhile.  But the plate was HUGE!  They have really upped their portion sizes since they first opened!

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We also had the Roasted Garlic Hummus with “garden vegetables” (today was just carrots and cucumber slices) and grilled pita (which definitely had cardamom in it – which gave it a super “Indian” feel…)  Delicious as usual… just too much EVOO and herbs/garlic in the middle of the hummus, which, I personally stayed clear from.  The hummus was rich, yummy and garlicky enough as it was.

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It was quite tasty…. I love hummus myself, so I was enjoying it like a mofo.  Plus I love carrots and recently found a love again for cucumbers…I think it’s the way they sliced it.

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Then came our entrees.  My lovely lady date got the Herb-Marinated Half Chicken that came with garlic mashed potatoes and over sautéed spinach – which I have had before, so I highly recommended it.  It was loved.  Everything was perfectly seasoned – but, like I said, a HUGE portion.  Seemed a whole lot larger than the last time I got it.

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I was craving beef… and I’ve had the short ribs and the steak tips and the salads with the steak so I noticed they had something new… a Chimichurri Skirt Steak on top of braised kale with steak-cut sweet potato fries.  The steak, while I got it ‘medium rare’ was still cooked medium/medium-well.  Which is why I always ask for things rare to medium rare, or else you’ll just get it well-done and overcooked.

The steak was delicious, as was the chimichurri, though I felt it could’ve been more present – it was pretty…. not “bland” but light. Present, but not really there.  The kale though, tasted overpowering and the salt was just crunching through…. wasn’t my fav.  I stole some spinach from the chicken dish instead.  My dinner date wasn’t too big of a fan of the kale either.  Meh.

[ps. for a nice chimichurri sauce check out Bon Appétit – my fav goto place for inspiration]

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I got a nice Californian Cabernet Sauvignon [Red, duh] which took me forever to sip on. Strangely so. [I’ve been cutting down on my alcohol so it doesn’t take much lately]

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Delicious.

So  now back to the question…. what am I …. wait what?  I think I’m tipsy now.

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Ohhhh so what NOW?!  What now????  After what?  “After taking a chance at love and moving to another country and coming back, so soon after, broken hearted”?  Well, I take that and I continue on. [BTW have you noticed how awesome my hair is? Yay for my new waves/curls]

I can say that I went to another country with full on intentions of nothing but the best… and yes I came home, a bit sad.  I wouldn’t call myself broken.  I’ve been broken so many times, it’s more about who can piece me back together, has the patience to, now, than to say who broke me apart.  How do  you break when you’re already broken?

Am I just damaged goods?

I don’t think so.  I just think that the one who should be with me hasn’t realized it yet.  Or found me yet?! Who knows.  I hope it’s…

… does it even matter who I say, unless it’s mutual?!

So there it is.  A splendid  dinner and a so-so answer to the question asked.

Buenos Noches mis Amores <3

Ending 2013 with a Bang, starting at Les Zygomates

I know, I know, you’re thinking WHERE have you been? Posts of song lyrics/music videos/etc is just lame – so let’s speak FOOD….!!! That’s what you guys come here for, right? I hope you still do.  I’ve been super busy with, LIFE.  And happiness and just living the dream.

It was super last minute and the day before but we, B & I settled on commiting to Les Zygomates.  So after getting dolled up listening to some good music and drinking some bubbles we headed out into the freezing night for a good time.  Dinner at Les Zygomates + Estate.

It was pretty funny because I asked them if we could order off the regular menu and they said NO, if we sat at a table we HAD to get the Prix Fixe and we could only order off the regular menu if we sat at the bar.

And yes I made that face.
I think I made that noise too….

Their New Year’s Eve Menu

First Course (choice of one)

Lobster Bisque, Puff Pastry, Oloroso Sherry

Endive & Chicory Salad Cider Vinaigrette, Roquefort Cheese, Spiced Filberts, Shaved Heirloom Apple

Onion Soup Gratinee

Torchon of Foie Gras, Chocolate Brioche, Dried Figs & Port ($12 supplement)

Second Course (choice of one)

Thatch Island Oysters, Mignonette

Seared Pork Belly, Lentils de Puy, Sherry-Honey Emulsion

Escargot, Braised Black Garlic, Fresh Fettuccine, Roasted Tomato & Thyme, Cumin Scented Marcona Almonds

Tuna Tartar, Sesame Soy Vinaigrette, Hearts of Palm, Winter Melon, Cucumber & Lotus Root

Third Course (choice of one)

Pan Roasted Giannone Chicken Breast, Braised Escarole, Lardons, Sweet & Sour Cherry Gastrique

Grilled Painted Hills Sirloin, Kennebec Potato Gratin, Maitake Mushrooms, Green-Peppercorn Red Wine Sauce

Seared Diver Sea Scallops, Black Truffle-Parsnip Puree, Chestnut Veloute, Fried Kale

Lightly Roasted Berkshire Pork Chop, Roasted Butternut Squash, Braised Apples, Calvados Glazed Onions

Grilled Faroe Island Salmon, Whole Grain Mustard Whipped Potatoes, Braised Lentils, Brussels Sprout Leaves

Dessert (choice of one)

Creme Brulee Tartlett

L’opera Cake  with Pistachio and Pomegranate

Assorted Ice Cream & Sorbet

Ok so knowing me, you guys should know what I wanna do with this. B was a true sport and we picked the dishes out together.  He actually pointed out today how funny and ‘food critic’ of me that I made the comment “Nothing in the third course really pops out at me… can I just order one of each second course?” We got a decent bottle of Rosé….  and then later on each had a different glass of wine… I liked B’s better so he switched with me :] HEE HEE HEE

Yes I have issues, you have to ask B why he puts up with it :] Rawr rawr rawr purr purr purr…..

First Course
Torchon of Foie Gras
Chocolate Brioche, Dried Figs & Port

This was DIVINE.. of course, a huge delicious piece of foie perfectly cooked and amaaaaazing with the slightly re-hydrated dried figs.  The chocolate brioche wasn’t sweet but had a nice bitter chocolate, very mellow, taste, that had a perfect fit to the fatty foie.

Endive & Chicory Salad
Cider Vinaigrette, Roquefort Cheese, Spiced Filberts, Shaved Heirloom Apple

This wasn’t bad but it wasn’t super amazing – I think it was overdressed and just so-so.  I mean a simple salad is a simple salad. Yeah we didn’t finish this, BUT it was refreshing after DEVOURING the foie.  Definitely a good palate cleanser…[esp from the cider vinaigrette]

Second Course
Thatch Island Oysters
Mignonette

We were actually gonna just order like a half dozen oysters but they were on the menu, so WHY NOT?! They were huge briney and delicious. So just to let you know, Thatch Island Oysters are from Branstable Harbor, Cape Cod so they’re pretty local, I also LOVE LOVE LOVE and PREFER East Coast to West Coast Oysters, so YAYYYY.. happy little me.

Seared Pork Belly
Lentils de Puy, Sherry-Honey Emulsion

Not gonna lie, Pork Belly is never bad, but the lentils to pork belly is kinda like… UHHHHH…. yeah. It was nothing special though.. I guess there’s only so much people do with pork belly now? Yay for Asians who are more creative…. but overall a solid dish, I kinda wish we went for escargot…. I was thinking of it but I always figured Oysters CHECK, Pork Belly CHECK – Maybe I went wrong this time?!

Third Course
Pan Roasted Giannone Chicken Breast
Braised Escarole, Lardons, Sweet & Sour Cherry Gastrique

Ok I blame myself for ordering this, but it was the most interesting on the list [other than scallops, which we also ordered] While the lardons and the flavoring was great the chicken was sooooo dryyyyyy I kinda was dying….

Seared Diver Sea Scallops
Black Truffle-Parsnip Puree, Chestnut Veloute, Fried Kale

These were absolutely amazing and totally B’s call.  In fact, since I didn’t like the chicken he was so sweet to trade with me and actually eat a lot of the chicken. HOW IS B NOT THE BEST THING EVER? He let me eat the scallops <3

Dessert
They had four different ice creams, all of them were the usual except for this one, it was like some boozy  kind of a sort.

But the reason why he’s THAT awesome is that he ordered espresso to pour over the ice cream and made it into an affogato – yeah I think he knows the way to my heart.

Creme Brulee Tartlett

This was good, but no ice cream with espresso.. hahaha, my bad. By this time I was just happy and my tummy was happy and I was just loving the  affogato – so NO, this dessert did not fail… I was just distracted by my talented partner in crime’s idea :]

SO Happy New Years from US TWO… May everyone have the most amazing 2014… cuz I just ended 2013 in a FUCKING AWESOME WAY and it’s definitely off to a darn good start with this guy around ;]

Best. New Years. EVER.