Thursday, January 22, 2015

Byron Bay

From Gold Coast, we rented a car to make the ten hour drive along the Pacific Highway to Sydney. The drive was split up with stops in Byron Bay, Coffs Harbor, and Port Macquerie. Our favorite spot was the lovely, bohemian beach town of Byron Bay where we took surf lessons, rode bikes downtown, and perfected the Australian salutations of "How going?" and "No worries."

Highlights: Surf lessons, banana everything (organic Banana Bread at Byron Fresh Cafe and Byron Bay Banana Split gelato at In the Pink), dogs on the beach. 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Gold Coast

After two days in Brisbane, we hopped an hour long train ride to Gold Coast for some quality beach time. We stayed in the Surfer's Paradise area, which felt a bit like college spring break hot spot, but the beach and my discovery of the beauty of Australian iced coffee completely made up for it. In Australia, when you order an iced coffee (unless it's in a bottle), it often comes served with a big scoop of ice cream. No complaints about that!

Highlights: Trip to the top of Q1 (the tallest building in the Southern Hemisphere), sunset drinks at Helm Bar Surfers on the Nerang River, ESPL Iced Coffee

Friday, January 9, 2015


It's been a hot minute since my last post, but I want to share a few highlights from our recent trip to Australia and New Zealand. I wasn't sure what to expect about Brisbane, our first stop, but we were pleasantly surprised with how much we enjoyed our time there. Perhaps it was the passion fruit, Southeast Asian food galore, holding the cutest koala named Rodney, or getting acclimated to a tropical Christmas season, but Brissy's laid-back city vibe was a warm welcome to our fortnight Down Under.

Highlights: Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, drinks at Alfred & Constance, breakfast at Scout 

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Chicago — Glazed & Infused

All right, all right, all right. Glazed & Infused. Best doughnut shop name ever? I'm sure Matthew McConaughey would agree.

After one too many over-the-top doughnuts, I came back to old-school doughnut roots while in Chicago at Glazed & Infused. I was beginning to stray from the appreciation of the classics. Give me glazed or give me death.

Cue Glazed & Infused and their Vanilla Bean Glazed doughnut. Utter perfection. This quintessential glazed cannot be beat.

Glazed & Infused is a local chain with five locations in the Chicago area. We went to the Lincoln Park location and utilized the adorable walk-up window to order and sat inside to enjoy.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Happy National Coffee Day!

Would you be shocked if I told you that there's no shortage of good coffee in Seattle

In this caffeinated land, fortunately you don't have to worry about obtaining coffee wherever you may be, because there is a place at practically every corner. When you want coffee or simply must have it to function, sometimes proximity is all that truly matters. Since Brian doesn't drink coffee (I know, crazy right?), I pretty much let the coffee gods lead me to wherever happened to be closest at the time. 

Being a rebel and all, I ordered a latte just about everywhere (hey, it was vacation). Not only did I enjoy those lattes, complete with their fancy foam art, but I admired that each coffee shop had so much character. I may not know the difference between a mad-scientist or retro Italian-looking coffee making contraption, but good branding and design will always get your coffee shop bonus points from me. 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Shake Shack

I recently had my first Shake Shack experience in NYC. It's suitable that "shake" is in the name because my vanilla shake sure was scrumptious. The burgers and fries were pretty good too, although the long line and battle to find a table at the Times Square location was not fun. But, if you need a cheap grease fix, it's a good choice. Additionally, the Mast Brothers Chocolate Shake Shack-blend bar is dynamite too. 

It got me thinking though. Why do we get so excited about about regional burger-and-fries joints that aren't nearby? 

The Midwest has Sonic.
Texas has Whataburger.
The West Coast has In-N-Out.
New York has Shake Shack.

I have a friend in California who is absolutely obsessed with Sonic and I've always thought that to be bit funny. Don't get me wrong. Nothing beats a Sonic Happy Hour, even though I try not to drink it that much anymore (especially diet). Growing up in Kansas, Sonic Drive-Ins are like Starbucks in Seattle though. They are everywhere. 

When I first moved to Dallas, I was excited for Whataburger, but it's not a favorite. There's one right next door to my school so it's definitely a blessing that I'm not that into it. 

As for In-N-Out, my first trip there was in Scottsdale years ago. I had heard stories about how people would wait in line for hours, lining up for blocks to order from the drive-thru. In-N-Out used to have a very special place in my heart on trips to Arizona and California, but since they came to Texas a few years ago, I lost interest. The closeness makes it far less intriguing.

When I heard the news that Shake Shack is coming to Austin, I was a bit disappointed. There's something alluring about distance that makes burgers and fries taste better. Obviously, it's a mental thing. Is it just me?

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Happy National Dog Day

Happy National Dog Day. 

Say hello to Lacy, Auggie, Sully, and Pancake.