Tag Archives: tilapia

Evening in Greenwich Village

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My last evening in New York City before heading home to California for the holidays was mostly spent in Greenwich Village. Though, first I stopped by Tory Burch in SoHo to use my $50 birthday gift card. I picked out a classic Tory Burch shiny hot pink bracelet (the kind that wraps around twice) with gold circle detail that has the Tory Burch logo etched on. It definitely cost more than I would normally spend on jewelry, but the gift card definitely helped.

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After the Tory Burch shopping excursion, I headed into the Village to meet my friend for a free birthday dinner at Slide. On the way, I found a cute little gift shop called Kado so I walked in and found myself in the middle of a fun, festive holiday party to promote Nicole Magazine. There was wine, snacks, wraps and goody bags! I left to check in at Slide and found that it was closed – Seized by the landlord! So, I had my friend meet me at the shop so we could enjoy the holiday atmosphere. I even got a bit of gift shopping in—Kado sells a plethora of cool merchandise, from deliciously scented candles, to bath & body products, to interesting books, to unique and whimsical plush stuffed animals…

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After Kado, my friend suggested dinner at Café Espanol which was conveniently just down the street. It’s a cozy little restaurant and decorated with plenty of holiday cheer. We decided to order from the prix fixe menu ($21.99) which was quite good, however did not cover dessert much to our dissatisfaction.

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I started off with Caldo Gallego Soup, which is white bean soup with cabbage, greens, potato and pork. I enjoyed it for the most part, but I didn’t expect the beans because the waiter’s description was quite vague.  Overall, it was pretty tasty and very hearty.

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I then had the Croquetas (chicken and Serrano croquettes) for an appetizer. There were six croquetas total which was a lot more than I was expecting. And they were delicious! Little fried balls with chicken and ham inside, with béchamel white sauce. It was crispy on the outside and soft, meaty, flavorful on the inside. There was so much of it that it almost ruined my appetite for the main course. I said almost.

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For the entrée, I picked tilapia filet with saffron rice. The tilapia was a nice large portion and seasoned well with pepper, herbs and a light sauce. It was decent, but would have liked it more if it was cooked more to a crisp. I did enjoy the saffron rice with peas and mixing it with the sauce that came with the fish.

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After our meal, a waiter came over with a tray full of delectable looking desserts (flan, crème brulee, tres leches, cheesecake, chocolate mousse cake) which looked very tempting, but for once we were too full to partake in any dessert.

It turned out to be a truly lovely evening, despite the fact that Slide was closed. The Kado holiday party and dining at Café Espanol more than made up for it.

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Café Esponal
172 Bleecker St
New York, NY
Cafe Espanol

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Atlantic City Weekend

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I spent a luxurious, pampered weekend at Trump Plaza in Atlantic City with a good friend of mine. We checked into our lovely room on Friday afternoon and then headed to the spa, complete with a lounging area; soft-lit mirrors with primping necessities; jacuzzi; steam room and showers. We enjoyed the trail mix, fruit and juices that were provided for our pleasure.

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Afterwards, we headed to dinner at Rainforest Cafe. The wait was around 45 minutes, but we enjoyed the time looking around the store. We were surrounded by a forest-like atmosphere with trees, leaves, monkeys, huge butterflies, elephants, exotic parrots (all not real, of course).

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After we were finally seated, I ordered a fruity smoothie with orange sherbet and decided on Parmesan-crusted tilapia with lump crab meat and alfredo pasta with cream sauce as my main. It was delicious- The tilapia was perfect: Light and flaky, and the added flavor of the Parmesan was a cheesy delight. The pasta was al dente, with thick creamy white sauce that was well seasoned. And the crab was wonderfully tasty… It added to the decadence of the meal.

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Eating at Rainforest was a very cool experience as well. Every 20 minutes or so, there would be a simulated lightning rainstorm – The lights would dim, thunder would crash, lightning would flash, which added to the fun of being there.

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After our lovely meal, we got to see this ultra awesome colorful 3Dish light/music show on the building nearby. It showed different themes, from crumbling building, technology, floating shapes, to psychedelic colors and patterns.

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Then, we went to the shops at Caesars to check out the Water Show at the water fountain. The bright pink, purple, blue, orange meshing of colors, the water spurting up in differing heights and intermittent streams of water flowing down, the accompanying music, the smoky atmosphere, all combined to make an awe-inspiring visual experience.

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Saturday we spent the morning at the beach, splashing around in the waves. The water was a bit chilly, but we got used to it pretty quickly.

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After spending some time in the water and under the sun at the beach, we stopped by the Trump Plaza pool, which was wonderful. Large open space, high ceilings, palm trees, beach lounge chairs, slanted glass windows, and outer rooftop decks that overlook the the ocean, beach bar and Caesar’s.

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We took one of the push cars to The Chelsea to have lunch at a cute diner called Teplitzky’s. I had a roast beef sandwich with horseradish mayo and crispy onions, complete with garlic fries. The roast beef went really well with the crispy onions and the garlic fries were delightfully thin, crispy and delicious.

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After lunch we walked along the boardwalk, stopping by a couple of places along the way, such as Steel’s Fudge, where I purchased some chocolate marshmallow fudge. When back at Trump Plaza, we spent some time at the casino and tried our hand at the slot machines. We had each received $25 voucher to use on the slots, so that we used that up. I ended up winning $25, which isn’t bad considering I spent nothing to begin with!

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We had some time to relax after the casino, and got dolled up for dinner at Back in the Day Buffet inside Trump Plaza. The food was just okay. I think the chicken, mashed potatoes, turkey and salad were probably the best. However, dessert was delectable. I had bread pudding with thick, sweet, creamy vanilla sauce; rich and wonderful chocolate cake and a chocolate chip blondie brownie.

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After dinner we headed to the theater in Trump Plaza to see Beatlemania! We had really good seats, near the front. These guys gave us a fabulous evening of nostalgia for Beatles lovers, or even those (like us) who aren’t the biggest fans, but have an appreciation for the band. Even though I didn’t know a lot of the songs by heart, I found myself singing along to the more popular tunes. Almost every song was catchy and fun loving. Film of 60’s era events, commercials, shows were being displayed in the background, and there were cool lighting effects on the stage. The costumes were spot on and the band played their parts well… Down to the British accents, wigs and facial hair. They sounded great together and the main singer in particular had a gorgeous melodious voice. I really enjoyed the last couple songs when they got everyone standing and dancing along.

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Here is a set list of the Bealtemania show:

The Ed Sullivan Show (Saw Her Standing There, Eight Days a Week, Yesterday, etc)
Sgt. Pepper’s (Intro/A Little Help from Your Friends, A Day in the Life, Imagine, Here Comes the Sun, etc)
Magical Mystery Tour (All You Need is Love, Strawberry Fields, I am the Walrus, Penny Lane, etc)
Apple Studios Roof (Get Back, Come Together, Let it Be, Hey Jude, etc.) and Twist and Shout

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Sunday, our last day in Atlantic City, we spent at the beach and having a delicious and hearty breakfast outdoors at a Trump Plaza restaurant, EVO (Western Omelet – bacon, onion, green peppers and cheese, with potatoes and rye toast).

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An Evening with Comedian Lewis Black

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I headed to the Theatre at Westbury in Long Island to meet up with a friend to see Comedy Central star, Lewis Black on tour (The Rant is Due). Lewis Black is known for his “comedy style, which often includes simulating a mental breakdown, or an increasingly angry rant, ridiculing history, politics, religion, trends and cultural phenomena.” We got to the theater early and found our seats.

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It wasn’t too long until Lewis Black’s comedian friend John Bowman came up to do his bit. He was great- Weird, fun, cynical and played these cool twisted songs.

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After that, the man of the hour, Lewis Black came out to thunderous applause and his first comment was, “I wish I was going to the show that all of you are making so much noise for!” Lewis Black was hilarious– He definitely made me laugh and I loved that he could back up what he was talking about, making compelling points about the absurdity of our world, whether it was social security, government, Obamacare, TV in the old days, Facebook, congress, business, and so much more.

I was in stitches hearing about his experience with signing up for Facebook and then Spotify through Facebook. Also when he discussed the difference between “dumb” and “stupid” as well as Democrats and Republicans. Or when he went on and on about social security and long division, proving how it’s impossible to figure out. And when he likened ADD medication for children to speed and discussed how we all have ADD & cannot focus on just one thing anymore. The list goes on… I had such a great time seeing Lewis Black perform and it was well worth the travel to Long Island.

Afterwards, my friend and I were trying to find a nice spot for dinner. We stopped in at Frank’s Steakhouse but the waitress was rushing us to order because the kitchen was closing and was quite rude about it, so we decided to take our business elsewhere. We ended up finding a Ruby Tuesday, and we were not disappointed. The food was delicious and the service excellent.

I started off with the “Tropical Sunrise” drink, which is a blend of mango, pineapple, and O.J. shaken with ice and served with a splash of grenadine and a cherry. It was pretty good. I liked the bits of mango mixed in with the drink and loved the tropical fruit flavors together.

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As for the food, my friend and I shared the crispy coconut shrimp appetizer which was very tasty. For my meal, I chose the New Orleans seafood, which consisted of creole-seasoned tilapia topped with sauteed shrimp and a rich, creamy Parmesan sauce. This also came with two sides. I chose rice pilaf and the salad bar option. I really love the salad bar because you can create your own deliciously healthy salad… I added mushroom, peas, onion, tomato, sunflower seeds, edamame, peas, cheese to my salad, along with a bit of pasta salad, apple salad and potato salad. It was almost a full appetizer in itself!

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Then my entree came and it was wonderful. The tilapia was flaky, tender, nice flavor and the shrimp in the Parmesan cream was divine. The rice pilaf was decent– Maybe could have been seasoned a bit more but still pretty good. Of course I had to take most of it home, and it was just as good the next day.

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Last, my friend and I shared an amazing peanut butter brownie with topping of caramel spread, with chocolate and caramel sauce mingling around the brownie. It was delectable… Very rich, deep peanut buttery flavor with the chocolate and undeniable taste of sweet, sticky caramel.

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I had a wonderful night in Long Island… Top notch, hilarious entertainment by Lewis Black & John Bowman and a delicious dinner at Ruby Tuesday!

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