Sunday, August 26, 2012

Mango Mango's

I'm just now getting caught up since our vacation in St. Augustine Beach, Florida. We stayed with B's grandma in her cute house by the beach, saw some alligators, went on an Boat Eco-tour, and played in the ocean and sand. It was marvelous!

When I take a whole entire week off of work, I kind of get into a much more fuzzy-brained and mellow mood. It's so nice..... Anyway, so the weekend after we got back, I did a 22 mile Urban Bike Race with my friend Sharyn, where you have to check in at 7 locations around the city. I probably should've trained a bit more beforehand, since I don't ride my bike all that much, but it was fun and exhausting! My legs were so so sore the next few days.

This weekend I finally did our 6 loads of laundry, cleaned the apartment, and I can pack my lunch for work tomorrow since I went to the grocery finally.

That big ol' piece of cake up top is the Monster Chocolate cake at Mango Mango's Beachside Bar and Grill in St. Augustine. It actually was a cappuccino ice cream cake, with Oreo crust, and it was deeeelicious.

The restaurant itself was right next to the beach, and looked cute on the outside, so I wanted to try out their dinner. The menu was mostly Caribbean food, which I LOVE, so I wanted everything on the menu.

I decided to get the standard Cuban sandwich, with Yucca fries, and a side of fried plantains (I couldn't resist!) The sandwich itself was okay, kind of dry, but it worked. I'd never even heard of Yucca until I got there, and they were like big fat fries, only 10 million times better. There was a sweet sauce to dip them in, which gave them a great flavor. I guess if you eat yucca not in a fried form, it's not very good, so I'm glad I got to try them the best way.

The side of fried plantains also did not disappoint. I didn't snap a picture of them, but they were like big chunks of crispy sweetness. Mmm I wish I knew how to make them at home.

We took a night walk on the beach. We didn't have a flashlight, it was pitch black, and we were walking in the water without our sandals on. Then we started thinking how there were tons of crabs probably walking all over the place, and we might step on one! So we got out our phones to see if we could see any, and found this guy. Luckily we didn't step on him barefooted!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Tasting Room and Barrelhouse Flat

We had our book club at The Tasting Room last week, and of course this is the only picture I remembered to take of our lovely cheese and meat board. But it was all really yummy, especially paired with the wine! I can't remember exactly what the cheeses were because we just had our server pick her favorites, but I know the meats were sopressata and pate. We also ordered the Shepherds Pie with short ribs and blue cheese, and a margherita pizza. Both were equally tasty.

We got to sit on big comfy couches back in a quiet area, which I really liked. That way we didn't have to yell over music or other people talking.

For dessert, Emily brought us all candies that she had slaved away in French Pastry School making all day. They were all so good! I've never had freshly homemade candy before, it was so soft and flavorful. My favorites were the chocolate carmels, which is crazy because I hate tootsie rolls!

A month or so ago, the girls and I went out for Thai food at Penny's Noodle Shop, and then went to Barrelhouse Flat and had drinks. We were NOT impressed by Penny's. My chicken pad thai was just weird. The sauce wasn't very good, and the chicken was really dark. But hey, at least we know not to order from there again!

We walked to Barrelhouse Flat, which is a neat little bar that serves some food as well. It was we had been transported to the South in the 30s, with tons of whiskey, brandy, gin, and rum cocktails that I'd never heard of, and cute decorations with dim lighting (almost too dim, we couldn't read the menus!)

We all ordered a cocktail that sounded good, and of course all passed them around so we could all try them. WOWZA were they strong. I'm just not used to drinking the dark liquors, so it took me a while to finish, even though mind was probably the lightest in flavor.

We also got a few things to nibble on, the 3 cheese spreads and the crazy spicy popcorn.

Gotta go start the next book for Book Club! The last one we read was really good, but pretty crazy. Hopefully this one is more positive!