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In eateries, food on
August 28, 2013


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theres no getting around it: portola is the gold standard of coffee shops. i mean coffee is serious business there. the baristas wear lab coats and make coffee in beakers and they have a testing lab in the back room. it’s that intense. but the coffee here is gooooood. not normal good but “spend-all-my-extra-money-on-soy-lattes” good. the fact that they have a tea bar next door and an acai bowl place down the hall doesn’t help the amount of time and money i spend at the mix mart. its so bad the people who work there are starting to know me by name. birdy, the place with amazing acai bowls, also carries brown bear eats baked goods, which is my friend and her moms cookie company that has the best treats i’ve ever tasted. and the fact that most things they make are gluten-free or vegan makes it all the better.

so with all the said, i thought that the mix mart would be my perfect place to take my friend christina who is visiting from arrowhead because she is a fellow fine coffee, veggie packed salads and gluten-free vegan baked goods lover. we had lunch at the new green leaf (so yum but a little too hectic for my liking) then headed over to portola for a drink. everytime i hang out with christina, i’m reminded why we are best friends and how blessed i am to have met her half way across the world. we had so many laughs and reminisced about good times and talked about our plans for what’s next in our lives. we always have a great time together but it’s really great to hang out with her on this side of the world. so blessed to have such great friends! love you girlie

In eateries, food on
August 21, 2013

grateful for birthdays

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cafe graditude is hands down my favorite casual cafe in los angeles. for ellie’s birthday, we went to the location in venice which is much more casual and beachy than the larchmont restaurant. the food was, as usual, amazing and yummy and i love all the raw options on the menu. but the real star of the meal was the dessert! we had a raw fruit cobbler which i must have said 100 times “this is the best dessert i’ve ever had”. it was that good! i’m going to try to find a recipe that comes close and if i succeed, i’ll share it here. deal? but i think part of what made it so good was that when the waitress brought it out, the whole restaurant started singing a really cute and quirky version of happy birthday and it was just such a happy moment. now all we need is a cafe graditude in orange county and life will be made.

In eateries, food on
August 17, 2013


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acai bowls are my newest obsession. i’ve liked them for a while but since becoming a gluten-free vegan, they have become my go-to meal while out. so when i found out birdie, a cafe by the same people who opened milk+honey, was opening at the mix mart, i was overjoyed. now i had a great place to get lunch (or breakfast. or dinner. or snack) with my portola coffee. that’s the best part about acai bowls; they’re good for any meal! after my mom and i spoke on a panel for the women’s study at my church, we decided to have a girl date and get birdie bowls and lattes with another mother and daughter from our church. it was a fun time with great food and tons of laughs. my mom is so awesome and i’m really cherishing my time with her while i’m at home

In eateries, food on
August 13, 2013


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as part of our weekly bible study meet up, ellie and i went to intelligentsia on abbot kinney. i’ve been here a few times before but never stayed long enough to appreciate what a gem this location is. it has such a different vibe from the intelligentsia in silver lake (which i posted about here) which is more slick and less chill. going to this location is a nice change of pace and after a lot of patience, we finally scored spots on the balcony bar overlooking the whole shop. we people watched (since we had the perfect spots) and wrote and drew and laughed and of course had amazing coffee. i always love intelligentsia’s coffee (especially their iced lattes on a hot day) but i do wish they had hemp milk instead of soy and honey instead of simple syrup but i guess i’m just too picky lol. overall, i think i like this location just as much, if not more, than the silver lake location. i think i found myself a new favorite spot.

In eateries, food, travel on
August 9, 2013

sally loos

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on our way home from our road trip up north, we stopped at sally loos in san luis obispo. my dad went to cal poly in slo so we spent the day exploring the town and the college and seeing where my dad spent his college years. after looking at taylor kitto’s instagram (she’s from slo), i decided i needed to try sally loos from her endearing pictures. i love the cozy feel of sally loos and it reminded me of some of my favorite hang outs back home like alta and gypsy den. once i saw they had intelligentsia coffee and acai bowls on the menu, i was sold! the acai bowl was fruit filled and as good as any acai bowl i’ve ever had and of course the coffee was amazing. sally loo’s makes me wish i followed in my dad’s footsteps and went to slo. if only they had my major…

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In eateries, food, travel on
August 4, 2013

top dog cafe

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while i was in morro bay, we decided to grab lunch at top dog coffee bar. the bright yellow cafe immediately stands out because it is so bright and cheery. i had a great mexican soy iced mocha which was out of this world! we had our own little “top dog” with us so we took a seat outside and enjoyed the beautiful summer day. if i’m ever back in morro bay, top dog is the first place i will go

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In eateries, food on
July 22, 2013


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my best friend ellie and i have a bible study through the book of james every week at a different coffee shop. we alternate who choses which coffee shop and we attempt to surprise each other but i have a knack for guessing ellie’s choices. this past week, ellie choose le pain quotidien at fashion island (still proud of guessing this one) and though i’ve been there many times for lunch or coffee, it is especially wonderful for breakfast. the scrambled tofu was a great vegan option and the soy belgian chocolate was par excellence! i’m so greatful for friends who are up for anything! ellie, just wait for my next coffee shop pick 😉

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In eateries, food on
July 13, 2013

lunch at gjelinas

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you know those meals that you talk about for months after and you daydream about whenever you’re hungry? this was one of those meals! i’ve been hearing people rave about gjelina’s for months but i never thought it would live up to, yet alone exceed, its reputation. it was truly one of the best meals of my life. i never thought fennel and brussel sprouts could be so luxurious but they were fabulous, as was everything else at the table (or so i heard). the desserts were also amazing and we ate them so fast, i unfortunately didn’t get any pictures! i’m happy to say that the wonderful cupcakes and cashmere has a recipe for a replica of one of the desserts we got here. already looking forward to eating here again!

In eateries, food on
June 27, 2013

seventh tea

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one of the odd things about going away is coming back to things completely different than how you left. new places open, favorite places close, new buildings are built and the old is torn down. its such a weird concept that life goes on even when i’m on the other side of the world but that’s life! i love re-discovering the place i’ve lived all my life with new awe and wonder. one place that i’m just now discovering is seventh tea at the oc mix mart. it’s owned by the same people who opened portola, which is in my opinion the best coffee in orange county so even before i tried it, i knew this place would be quality. i love the concept of tea on tap and my iced oolong was great! all i can say is i know where i’ll be spending my time this summer

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In eateries, food, travel on
May 10, 2013

la cafe de paris

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i love all things french so this little french cafe by the church was a real find! their gluten free pancakes were surprisingly good (but isn’t everything with nutella good?) and it was a great time of fun and fellowship with some of my favorite ladies. i sure love saturdays!