Dinner & Drinks: Caffe Napoli

By food, new york city, restaurants One Comment


Over the last few summers, my mom and I have made it a little tradition to spend a day roaming around NYC with no plan whatsoever. Highlights of our day trips in years past have included Central Park, the Met, endless hours of shopping, and even ducking into a little nail salon for spur-of-the-moment pedicures. What stood out this year was all of the delicious food we snacked on all day — especially our early dinner outdoors at Caffe Napoli in Little Italy. We split a bottle of Prosecco and a few plates (bruschetta, a pasta dish and chicken Francaise) to comprise the perfect three-course meal.






Al Fresco: The Art of Dining (on Italian Food) Outdoors

By food 2 Comments


There are so many photos floating around of elaborate dinner parties held at immaculately set tables in the middle of the woods or some other ridiculous location, lit with glowing paper lanterns, that you can only imagine are attended by a bunch of impeccably dressed models sporting $500 outfits and slightly tousled hairstyles. In reality, I assume these dinner parties rarely come to fruition for a few very simple reasons, most of them having to do with mosquitos, humidity, and the fact that no one actually has the time, energy or logistical skills to set something like that up for anything less than a wedding.

To me, the point of eating outdoors in the summer is to sit back, relax, and enjoy the last hour or so of daylight — the air begins to cool, the fireflies begin to twinkle, and the sky turns those saturated shades of orange, pink, purple and blue. I don’t have a formal dining table on my patio, but I do have this comfortable conversation set that suited us just fine for dinner a few Sundays ago. Real dishes, flatware, serving bowls and glasses from the kitchen made this meal feel special, but the remnants of sand on our feet and salt in our hair didn’t feel one bit out of place as we scarfed down rotini with my homemade meat sauce, garlic bread, and one of my favorite cabernets.






Let’s Do Lunch: Havana

By food, norfolk, restaurants One Comment


If you ever find yourself roaming the streets of downtown Norfolk, mouth watering, a little extra cash in your pocket, and in search of the perfect lunch, I think a mojito and a half order of bbq chicken nachos at Havana is one of the best choices you could make. The bronzed tuna wrap is pretty delicious, too. =)

It’s a little pricey, but so very authentic inside. I love the atmosphere, and I used to stop in for lunch at least once month when I worked downtown.

Nowadays, it’s more of a weekend splurge, or a quick stop for a bite of Cuban fare and a drink before a performance at Chrysler Hall or The Norva.

Havana is located at 255 Granby Street in Norfolk. They serve lunch and dinner Monday through Friday and dinner only on Saturday. Strangely, the restaurant has no website, but does have a rarely updated Facebook page.






Go Bananas, Part II

By food, tropical fruits One Comment


My dad left a comment on my last post, urging me to check out Stephen Colbert’s entertaining endorsement of the Banana Bunker.

Um, this is obviously the greatest invention of all time. I have often dreamed of the day I could carry a banana around in my purse without risking its brutal injury. I can’t even fathom how I’ve lived without this device until now, seeing as that bananas are one of my favorite fruits, yet are just so difficult to transport without damage (especially for someone as clumsy as myself).

I’ve learned so much these last few days. I feel as though from this point forward, my banana-eating habits will be vastly improved, and as a result, I will indulge in nothing other than pristine, stage 5 bananas (unless, of course, I am making banana bread — then I’ll shoot for stage 7, squishy ones).

Go Bananas

By food, tropical fruits, you might learn something 10 Comments


This probably sounds trivial, but I have recently been on a lucky streak with bananas. I’m pretty particular about my bananas, and it’s been several months since I’ve bitten into one I didn’t like. Prior to this streak, my banana selection and enjoyment has been pretty hit or miss for the last several years.

As it turns out, perhaps it’s not a lucky streak at all. It may just be because I’ve been purchasing a majority of my bananas at Target. It seems they’ve got some sort of banana ripening process perfected over there.

banana process

I’m glad I get all these interesting press release e-mails that have nothing to do with anything I normally blog about, or I would never have known there was such a thing.

Personally, I prefer my bananas around stage 5, but I find they quickly progress from 4 to 7 at my house, which means I’ve got a very limited window in which to consume the whole bunch.

How about you? Do you ┬áhave any banana stage preferences? Perhaps we could form some kind of banana-trading support group — you give me your stage 5s in return for my stage 7s? =)

Images published with the permission of A Bullseye View, Target’s behind-the-scenes magazine.

P.S. Have you entered my giveaway yet?