Thursday, April 5, 2012

Carmen San Diego's got NOTHIN on my food travels

This post is basically going to be a huge review of the amazing food I ate while away in New York, the Dominican Republic, and Hawaii. You might want to eat before this. It will make you hungry. I'm a huge foodie and with my diet + being a locavore it's exceptionally hard to find food that wows me AND that I'm allowed to eat in restaurants. Luckily for me, there seems to be a small movement of restaurants popping up that employ the use of grass-fed, sustainably raised, local meat products and seasonal and local produce. Let's keep that movement uh-comin' restaurants, k? I like to eat your food sometimes. Cooking all the time is quite taxing. I digress...

There's a lot to cover so I'm just going to jump right into everything. Starting with New York. I visited my friend, love, old college roommate Lindsay, who is now living the dream in New York City. It was Saint Patrick's Day weekend. My friend was playing a concert there the Friday before the festivities. Fun was had. Food was eaten. And boy was it good. I love New York City. There is such a plethora of food to be eaten. Good food, at that. I researched some food places beforehand while on the longest bus ride ever (I love the Acela train, but beggars can't be choosers..) and I stumbled upon Bareburger. Holy shit. Their menu is friggen awesome. That link will take you to their menu. Look at it. De-lish. We loved it so much we went back the next day. Albeit, a bit more intoxicated. I actually was very, very good that weekend. Yes, I imbibed my fair share of red wine, sue me. But that's about it. I did cheat with some bangin' sweet potato croq's that had parmesan in them and I ate the entire basket, but f it. If that was my only cheat during a weekend filled with booze and tempting deliciousness (Irish soda bread...although, apparently I'm one of few who enjoy this?) then I'm freakin' Wonder Woman. Cut me some slack.

Roadhouse burger with Elk - medium rare, lettuce "bun", avocado, blackened maple bacon, roasted red peppers, apple smoked onions, and tomatillo sauce. (Normally comes with pepper jack but I opted out)

Big Blue Bacon with Ostrich - medium rare, lettuce "bun", bourbon sautéed mushrooms, apple smoked onions, blackened maple bacon, lettuce, and apple chutney. (Comes with danish blue cheese, but no dice for me)

As you can see, this place is freakin' awesome. Their burgers are super creative and they have every kind of meat a carnivore could ever dream of from wild boar to bison to your regular, old grass-fed bovine. Next time you're in Chelsea or the East Village or any of their other locations Check. Them. Out. Do it. 

I honestly can't remember the name of the next place we went. I got minimal sleep. Paleo fail. I was hanging out with pole dancers all night. Which was awesome. I'm not lying to you all. They're actually better described as go-go girls. Or athletes. Dayuumm you shoulda seen their moves. And arms. And stomachs. Fit as f*ck gurls. I talked Crossfit with one. She was awesome and rides motocross. I wish I could do that. I'd fall over in a second though and my butt would probably be too bony to ever get comfortable. C'mon squats, gimme dat butt padding! Here's what I ate/drank though!

4 drinks. Let' start with water. Standard. Bloody mary. Wow, I hate vodka, but this place is famous for their bloody marys and I can attest to why they deserve that fame. So yummy. Chunks of horseradish. Mmm my fav. Yeah, it's a cheat. Shmeh. Grapefruit juice to curb some insulin spikes I probably had goin' on. Aaand a beautiful Americano. Yum. 
Oh I spooned heavy cream into my mouth too. DEAL WITH IT.

My breakfast. In-house smoked bacon. So thick. So awesome. 2 eggs over easy. Perfectly cooked. And a nice greens salad in place of hashbrowns. Paleo winning! Especially when you combined all of them together. Ughhhhh arugula and bacon are a match made in heaven. I wish I could remember the name of this place. The decor was so victorian New Orleans and absolutely gorgeous. Such a great atmosphere & staff. They deserve credit. I'll find out.

Last breakfast before I hopped on a bus back to DC. Herb, spinach, and onion omelette. Surprisingly really good for a sketchy diner. Sweet potato fries in place of regular potatoes. Yeah they're probably fried in all sorts of bad oils, but hey. I'm not perfect either.

Let's migrate over to the Dominican Republic where I was such an awkward sea-turtle snorkeling. I'm not pro-snorkeler or anything, but the ridiculous poofy life-vest belts they made you wear were nottttt my thing. So I took it off and it trailed behind me for a while. Then I threw it on the boat and completely said fuggit. I was a swimmer for years, if I drowned it was my own stupid fault. I saw so many pretty fishies and corals! People were bitchin about how they couldn't see any fish. That's why you learn to swim, take your extra love handle balloon belt off, and paddle under. The coral reefs are dyin' people! Don't let your lack of aquatic sport prowess hold you back from seein' what's left of them!
Oh. And don't touch them. Or break them. Or I'll hunt you down. :)

Our flight into Punta Cana was an effing nightmare. It was rainy and their airport is....well, it's not Dulles. So we flew around in circles for 2 hours. Had to land in Santa Domingo. Refuel. They weren't equipped for our landing so it took us like another hour there. Finally got in to Punta Cana 3 hours later than we were supposed to. Along with 87 other planes. Customs was a mess. You had to buy a ticket to go through line after line after line. Long story short: ME WANT FOOOOOOD. Let me tell you. When my blood sugar is low and I haven't eaten in a while I become a b*tch. Like the biggest. Ask Mark. Or my mom. I was practically on the verge of tears I was so hungry. My stomach was distended. My biochemistry was. not. happy. So I don't have a picture of my first meal. But my mom was awesome, my Spanish skills thankfully came into action and we got a huge plate of grilled chicken and steamed broccoli. Best meal we had that whole time. Except for maybe an awesome steak I got at a steakhouse there on the island. I barely photographed meals there. I was usually too hungry because the hotel couldn't get their sh*t straight. They'd just opened and we were their first big party. Faiiiiil maximum. Language barrier didn't help. 

The menu for the awards ceremony. As close to food photography as I got that weekend. And my awesome TOMs sunglasses. Get some & help out Service for Sight and those in need of glasses!

This post is going to take 8 days to read if I keep at the pace I am now. So I'll just fast forward to Hawaii. Which was awesome. We stayed in Waikiki but traveled around the whole island. I'll explain more in pictures. 

Wow. There's not much else to say besides that. This was from a restaurant in Kaimuki called Town. Their motto is "Local first, organic whenever possible, with aloha always." Um. Hello. My life. Add on to this the fact that every single dish's ingredients could be winners on Chopped - and I was in love. I had the above: Pan roasted chicken, tatsoi, grapes, and pancetta. It usually comes with torn bread, but they were so accommodating. It was delectable. GO HERE if you are EVER in Oahu. 

My mom got the above at Town. Tombo (Pacific tuna), dandelion greens, curry potatoes, and tomato vinaigrette. Gahhhh I want to go back. If I could eat there every day I would. Check out their menu. I had to google so many things to find out what they were, so don't feel bad if you're clueless when looking at the word tatsoi either. It's some sort of bok-choy like green. It was awesome. 

Who loves Food Network? Emily loves Food Network. GUESS WHAT. Iron Chef Morimoto has a restaurant in Waikiki at this cute lil boutique hotel. GUESS WHAT PART 2. It was right next to our hotel. GUESS WHAT PART 3. MORIMOTO HIMSELF WAS IN WAIKIKI AT THE SAME TIME AS ME! Booyah. I accidentally saw him after this meal. Didn't recognize his cute lil self in his workout attire. Thus, I failed to get a pic. Went back and stalked. Failed to get a pic AGAIN because he showed up super late and we all know I'm in bed before 10. Fail. He was still there. And we started off with the amazing King Crab legs. Those fries. I tried some. F off. Only a few. Promise.

My meal. Tiiiiiiny lil wagyu beef burgers with spicy mustard and a mixed greens salad. Holy crap the burgers were amazing. I ordered seconds. Then I ordered dessert. You only eat at Morimoto's once right? Wrong. I went back. Oh well. 

Dessert. Holy motherf*cking sh*t. Peanut butter mousse, meringue crust, dark chocolate swirl stick thing, peanut butter ice cream egg. This was the cheat to beat out all cheats. No gluten but I may as well have just eaten a cow's udder. Ew. So gross. Never wanna eat dairy again.

No but really, I don't. I re-read some of The Paleo Solution while I was bored as sh*t eating massive amounts of jerky on the plane and he throws in the little "Try gluten after 30 days and see how it makes you feel. Do it for you. Not for me." piece of sh*t sentence. To give a little intro: when I got home from the Dominican I was starving. Typical. We stopped at a place near our house that thank g was open and I ordered ahi tuna. It came over salad. The salad had ranch. I ate the tuna and the parts of the salad that weren't drenched. Cue. Gut. Wrenching. Miserable. Pain. F*ck gluten. It was in the dressing. I will never, ever eat it again. I couldn't move for the whole night and a large part of the next day. That sh*t is NOT okay. No more gluten cheats.

So then dairy comes along at the end of my Hawaii trip and was like hey Emily want some froyo? Sh*t yes I do. No, Emily. This is hindsight speaking and you don't. I don't think I noticed the effect that the peanut butter ice cream had on me because I only ate about a bite of it and I was active, but the froyo in the airport was another story. Wowwwww. Stomach pains galore. I had no appetite, I was super nauseated, I learned my lesson. So yeah. I've become pretty strict now. A bit of advice for new paleo-ers, I was just like you a few weeks ago. Figured that gluten, dairy, and legumes were bad, but probably not destructive. HEED MY WARNING: they are. And do what Robb tells ya. Because you, like me, need to learn your lesson the hard way. Good luck to ya.

Bein the lone ranger at a table, creepin
on the other guests. Failing at being
a YP: young professional.
Best workout machine ever! This is me
prepping to do an overhead squat.
Balance = key.

My plate at the luau. The pork. OMG.
Amazing. Steak? Meh. So I got seconds
of the pork. :) I'm on a huge pig kick...
My typical plate at breakfast. A sh*t ton of
bacon, omlette, annnnd grapefruit.

My new inov8's! I'm obsessed with them. I figured it was finally time for me to snag a pair because my other shoes were pissing me off and I'm addicted to Crossfit. So they'll get their fair share of use.

Here's a recipe for y'all. My girl crush, Juli, over at PaleOMG has an awesome recipe for ketchup. Don't be like me and have it explode all over your stove. She even warned me. Faiiiiil. 

The end. Hope you ate before :) I warned ya about that too!

No comments:

Post a Comment