Ugh, technology problems (like the internet not working) are the worst part about blogging. I woke up bright and early this morning to give myself plenty of time to blog and have been unable to do so. After having breakfast and getting ready for work, I have no choice but to give ecto a go as well. Hopefully this will publish once our internet connection is back on.
Now, let’s talk about something a little more exciting – I’m going to Montreal TOMORROW. Yesterday the entire day I kept thinking it was Thursday, and getting more and more excited about our trip. Nope, I have to wait just one more day. Silly, Elina. This also gives me one more day to plan everything. Hopefully the internet is back up tonight and I can research my little heart out (I did make reservations for an awesome dinner… you’ll have to wait until Sunday to read about it 😉 ). Also, I guess Jazz fest is this weekend as well (completely coincidental). Hopefully it’s not too crowded. 😀
I don’t have anything too insightful to talk about today so let’s dive in to yesterday’s eats. Some were good, some where… well, we’ll get there in time. 😀
Good! Siggi’s vanilla yogurt with strawberries, kiwi, TJ’s American trek mix and Kashi GoLean cereal
This was my first time trying Siggi’s vanilla flavor and I absolutely loved it. Definitely my favorite. It tasted like real vanilla beans were added, not just vanilla extract. Now I see why the stuff ain’t cheap. Have you ever purchased a whole vanilla bean? Last time I had to buy one, it was $6.99 for ONE. Yeah, that’s how you get $2.79/yogurt.
Did I mention this bowl was awesome? Oh right. I did. 😆
Did anyone notice I haven’t been running lately? I haven’t really (just maybe as a quick warmup before a class if I’m early). I just don’t really enjoy it anymore so I stopped. At least for now. I still feel like I should be running. That was my primary cardio source (with spin usually once a week) and I‘m still trying to figure out how to stay fit without it. Any tips? I can’t really see myself spinning every other day either. I guess I just don’t love cardio in general. Give me weights and I’m a happy girl though. Is that weird? I feel like most girls (at least in the blog world) are really not into strength training. I loooooove it.
Anyways, yesterday was spin day. I love the instructor on Wednesday so I reminded myself this when I was having second thoughts about going and already started working up a “plan B.” “Just do it” mentality came to the rescue this time and the class was great. I’ve been feeling out of shape this week for some reason but I guess that’s why I’m there, right? Practice makes perfect.
Mixed greens, heirloom tomatoes, avocado, sweet potatoes, chickpeas, sauerkraut, pine nuts, hummus and feta. Say that 10 times fast. 😆
This was a great loaded salad. So many textures + flavors. I was even too lazy to go to the kitchen at work to grab a dressing and ended up eating it without it. The hummus + feta + sauerkraut actually coated all the greens and the dressing was completely unnecessary. Awesome!
Oh yeah, I did pack a cookie-to-go. And yes, I ate it.
Leftover shelling snow peas. I still can’t believe I ate nearly 3/4lb the day before.
Dinner was quite the adventure. We had another Groupon to G’Vanni’s expiring on Friday, and since we were going to be out of town, we decided to have a mid-week date at the North End (Boston’s Italian neighborhood). Sounds good, right? I made reservations for 6:30, thinking we’d have plenty of time to have dinner and do our usual mid-week post-dinner errands, including planning the rest of our trip. Well, North End is notorious for this – regardless of whether you have a reservation or not – you’re going to wait for your table. We arrived at the restaurant early, the hostess checked our name off and suggested that we go to a bar around the corner to have a drink while we wait for our table (which supposedly was going to be ready in 20 minutes). Ok, drinks it is.
I had a glass of Riesling, which was sweet and fruity (no picture – the bar was tiny and I would surely bump into someone with my camera). Twenty minutes later we decided to go back and check on our table. The hostess was a complete scatter brain… she definitely did not have a grip on who’s there and who’s going to be seated next (and as we found out later, whether tables were even ready – there were empty tables for way too long while we were eating, and people were still waiting outside!). After nearly 45 minutes (in total) we were finally seated.
G’Vanni’s has been around for 30 years, and the decor was definitely not updated since opening. Everything about the place felt and looked like a tourist trap. There were cheesy puns (“a veally good deal,” “taco bella antipasti” really?), Adam’s menu actually had a cover of a completely different restaurant in Rhode Island (I’m guessing they own it too?) and then the specials menu had a whole line of completely unrecognizable symbols (like their printer freaked out on them and they just left in there). Yeah, classy. So we decided to just laugh everything off. It was going to be quite the experience. We were ready!
Did I mention the super red lighting? Here is what our bread basket looked like. I kid you not.
I played with my camera, adjusted the white balance and did a little bit better this time (although more natural looking, that’s not what it really looked like to us).
The bread was soft and quite nice actually. I had a little piece. Adam finished the rest.
We also ordered a carafe of house Chianti. It was the same price as 3 glasses so we figured it was the way to go. Apparently a carafe is nearly 1.5 bottles!!! They kept re-filling our glasses nearly to the rim (and these are large glasses). Again, classy. The wine was quintessential house wine – totally drinkable but nothing to write home about.
For my entree I wanted a seafood pasta. I asked the waitress for a recommendation and she highly recommended the shrimp guiseppe – angel hair pasta with jumbo shrimp, organic tomato, prosciutto, white wine butter sauce. To be honest, it didn’t even sound great to me but she hesitated when I asked for another suggestion and after re-assuring me that it was not greasy, I ordered it after all.
Sorry for this atrocious photo. It was dark and the lighting was just washing everything out (read: made everything look one hue of red which I adjusted but it was still pretty much one hue of gray now…). So how did it taste? Blah (not bad but not good for sure). It tasted like buttery noodles with a few add-ins. Trust me, I wasn’t expecting something fancy or overly complex but I thought the food would be tasty. G’Vanni’s consistently has lines out the door, it has good reviews online, and the place has been around for 30 years surviving fierce competition in a neighborhood with 99% Italian restaurants. And it’s not cheap. In fact, it’s especially expensive for the quality of food you get. This dish was $26. Yeah, disappointing to say the least. I should say that Adam’s chicken dish (he actually doesn’t even know what he ordered – chicken with penne and spinach…) was pretty awesome. He gave me a few vegetarian bites and I really did love it (as he did, he polished the whole thing off). If we ordered the same thing (his), I’d write a different review I suppose. But this was the waitress’ recommendation!! Is this the best they can do with seafood?
We had enough of our entrees (I picked off the topping and left most of the pasta) and still had way too much wine to finish. I didn’t have high hopes for dessert (and the waitress admitted they were not home-made) but Adam encouraged me to get something since we were going to be there for a little while (and I did want dessert!). I very hesitantly ordered the tiramisu (because that’s what I was craving… although one waitress suggested the molten chocolate cake and another the mudslice pie. Again, can you say tourist trap?). Here is what we got:
Sorry, I forgot to adjust the lighting again (it looked fine on my camera, haha) but it was actually really good. I’m sure they get it frozen and then just dump a bunch of cinnamon on top and a dollop of whipped cream but hey, I couldn’t tell from the taste and that’s what counts.
This dinner was over $100 (we paid less with the Groupon) and I can definitely say it was NOT worth it. I am still shocked at how crazy busy it is (seriously, the lines are insane!!) – I even ran into 2 different people I know there (they were not together!) – that’s how popular it is. Clearly I’m missing something. Or maybe I’m a proper snob at this point. Haha.
How was your hump day? Did I mention we’re going on a mini-vacation TOMORROW? Oh yes, I did.