What a weekend? It feels like we crammed 17 days worth of stuff into 3 nights... Let's start at the top
Mike and I managed to score a spot on the First Friday tour at Escazu artisan chocolates.
It was a small group, only around 10 people, which I totally understood once we got in the back! The master chocolatier talked us through the process. Starting with the bean (all of the stuff you can somewhat see in picture below), and then where it gets dried and fermented, then shipped to..wherever? Then they hand sort the beans, from the not beans, before they roast them in that crazy contraption you see below. It's from Spain, roughly 1930s, and it came with a grinder that they use after the beans are roasted.
She told us that they don't add anything to the chocolate initially to get it to "grind" into what we consider to be chocolate, it's actually just the oil within the nibs that make them creamy. THEN, they add all the delicious stuff. They sell a variety of bars, which we brought two home with us.
They also make truffles. Delicious, amazing, iiiiiiinteresting truffles. Mike and I tried the Apple Pie Moonshine, Patron Tequila Anejo, Lime and Chili and the Bacon, Rosemary and SeaSalt (you'll see them again later..)
After the tour, we headed to Mellow Mushroom for dinner!
We got some delicious bruschetta and a pie and filled our stomachs to the brim.
|happy children faces. (see previous posts)|
After dinner, we headed over to Fox Liquor Bar. Ran by Ashley Christensen (of Raleigh restaurant, oh and IRON CHEF fame) in the basement of her two other restaurants. You have to pay a membership fee (a whopping $1) and then you can choose from the most amazing line up of drinks..ever.
|We started with a Pan American Clipper and a Mexican Firing Squad.|
We managed to find a spot at the bar (which was really lucky) and we watched the bartenders make all sorts of awesome concoctions.
|fresh fruit for garnishing|
In the middle of the night, I asked the bartender if she could make me a drink with Gin, that I would like. She whipped up something with Fernets in it and it was delicious.
Then Mike and I were watching her mix a drink with an egg in it, a Wonka Fizz, and she offered to let us taste a straw sample. Um, it was really good. A milkshake, frosty consistency. I also found out that her name is Carla, and we discovered the reason that we both looked so familiar to each other. She worked at the same tattoo parlor where I got my ink done. Great Great minds.
We mostly hung out at home, having cheese and sushi and wine for dinner, then watched Rango.
|Port Cheese, Rosemary and Cheddar cheese|
Afterwards, we dug into our Escazu chocolates. The chili lime was RIDICULOUSly good. Mike was more impressed with the Moonshine one than with the bacon chocolate.
We headed over to Fullsteam Brewery in Durham.
They were having a "Music for Micro Loans" event, cosponsored by Whole Foods. They had a rice and hibiscus beer, and for a $10 donation, you could keep the glasses. We had a great time listening to all the music, chatting to other bar patrons and having a few good beers.
|our "hand stamps" for entry|
It was also during this event that I tried to send my mom a text.
I wanted to tell her she was very wise.
You can see what I told her.
I called quickly to tell her what I meant, and (luckily) she was already laughing.
"I'd just ordered a hamburger steak and fries..guess I'll just get wider"
After we left Fullsteam, we headed to my favorite Durham eatery. (ok, one of em)
for some chicken nachos. These have been a staple in my diet since I was in 11th grade.
Finally, we headed back Raleigh side for a "little desert"
We didn't realize how "little" crepes in the USA could be..
but we ate em anyway,
then meandered home and get our heads in place for the week.
Weekends like this are what dreams are made of. Seriously.
What'd YOU do this weekend?