Nara-Ya, but first… an Update!

I know y’all are sick and tired of having to tune in every 1.26 years to read something mediocre. I could be more consistent, but that would require me leaving the house on a consistent basis — which I do not do. Why? Well, where to start? Outside is too expensive, I’m allergic to outside, and my doctor thought I may have had cancer and I got super depressed and had to be on a special diet and meds and, yeah. I don’t have cancer, though. Had to find out like 6 weeks later… I know my parents were happy to not hear me say “Damn, this may be my last time I ever do….” on the regular.

Funny, because I told myself my 2023 goal was to leave the house more. I did rejoin a pilates studio (won’t say the name because, petty), so I suppose I did start leaving the house more, at least 3x a week starting in April (hahahahha!) but, hey, it is technically leaving the house. Before that, I joined a social group for singles. Between the absolute wackos I was meeting on the internet (in my defense, they came off as stand up men… but then again, they are on a dating app… like ya girl), ’twas time to try something new! Joined in February… Just sent them an email to terminate my contract. More on that later, but honestly, it wasn’t very fun. And all the better events were at night in the city, and I really enjoy being in bed by like 9pm. Now… did I meet a twin flame at one of the events? Yes. But in my defense, he was just there at the bar, not part of the group. Am I still going to terminate? Yes. How am I going to organically meet people? Yes. Wait, no. Wait, I don’t know!

While sulking, something I do every now and then especially when I’m home scrolling through my IG looking at all the amazing food in DC that I can’t eat without feeling extremely sick for a couple of days, my friend decides to call me and asks to catch up. After rescheduling, we finally caught up at Nara-Ya.

I’ve been once for dinner, and ate some candied kumquats (which I thought were phenom, even though my friend literally almost jumped out of the building in disgust), and I thought the food was good enough to go back to for dinner. When they launched their brunch menu, I was about it! Took months to finally go there… I told one of my other friend about it, and she had went before me with one of her other friends and loved it. But, I did eventually get there.

Woke up and started getting ready. I wasn’t planning on doing real makeup, but I did want to be on my blonde girl sh*t, and last weekend, my blonde wig did not want to wig. Needed some extra time to ensure that if the wig wasn’t wigging, could just switch to a style that would style, you know? The wig wigged, the curls curled, and the lace laced. My makeup routine as of late has been simple: primer, concealer, brightening setting powder, blush, bronzer, highlight, setting spray — we out! So that didn’t take long to do. But curling the hair??? Yuh. I thought I was running late, I even forgot my headphones at home. Debated turning back around to grab my headphones for the metro ride in, but didn’t want to be late… My friend said she’d be there at 1:15p (I told her 1p), but at that point, I was already on the metro, also thinking I’d be there by 1:15p (because I thought I was running a little late).

Turns out, managed to get there by like 1:05p, and walked around the waterfront to kill time until 1:15p. Restaurants have been doing a thing where they kick you out after a certain amount of time and they hold your table for that amount of time. Reservation was at 1:15p, so we’d have the table until 3:15p. If I call them saying I’d be late, like 2p, they’d still seat me, but I’d still have to get out by 3:15p. So I sat down, and waited… until 2p… when my friend finally showed up… lol (but I’m not actually laughing, lol). I didn’t want to start eating or drinking without her, so just sat and avoided making eye contact with the waiter, who truly felt sorry for me. Did lots of thinking about life, but mainly how I had just realized my shoes were broken? Me and my broke ass now need to buy a new pair because they’ve become a warm weather staple! Which… let me do now or else I’d forget.

RIP!!! But if you want a pair… PashionFootwear is honestly one of my favorite shoes.

Miss ma’am finally showed up and we got to drinking and eating — yes, in that order! Caught up on life (it’s okay), work (meh), relationships (oh, boy), family (good), and all that fun stuff. But enough about me, let’s get to the food! The concept is bottomless small plates (one fee) and bottomless mimosas (another fee). And of course, if one person opts for bottomless mimosas, the whole table needs to get it, hence why I was waiting for miss ma’am to show up so that I didn’t lock her into getting mimosas. Also, wine (champagne) and citrus fruits (oranges) are high on the list of foods I should not be having, and in an attempt to help my stomach issues, I didn’t want to start too early. My tolerance is pretty low, sensitivity to alcohol pretty high, but when mixing in things I really shouldn’t have? Gastritis!!! I had just recovered from Wine in the Woods about 2 weeks ago, so was not necessarily looking for a repeat, considering I have a team on-site in Boston and a friend’s birthday in Mexico and definitely wanna turn up!! Prepping for my 2-3 weeks of sickness post Mexico (assuming, I don’t end up super sick during the trip, like I did in Ecuador).

Okay, now back to the food.

We started off with 3 plates: omelette, pork belly hash with potatoes, and brussels sprouts! I’m weird about eggs that I don’t see made in front of me, but these weren’t bad. They were fluffy and full of peppers. Very much enjoyed the pork belly hash: too much potato, too little pork belly, but whatever. While I normally enjoy potatoes of the crispy variety, these soft potatoes were pretty good! I think sautéing them in the pork belly fat? Yeah… Nice. And the brussels sprouts? Pretty damn good. We really gotta give a hand to brussels sprouts and cauliflower. Remember the days when them jaunts would only be steamed??? NASTY! Now they’re THOSE girls! Love the come up.

I’m sorry but the tofu sticks??? Looked nasty. Tasted nasty. Non-crispy tofu? Crazy. The flavor didn’t even soak in, and the texture was aggressively wet spongey. And I know y’all are thinking, “but that’s tofu for you!” NO! Have y’all had some GOOD TOFU before? That’s why! It’s a skip for me!

The steak though… was pretty good. My favorite. And if I wasn’t so goshdarn full, I’d only ask for a plate of the steak. Now, I know you notice the chicken and waffles in the back… I didn’t have any, but my friend didn’t say they were bad! She didn’t comment on them at all. So, do with that information as you will.

Love this dessert concept. Somebody needs to make a dessert bar but tapas style. Immediately. Like yesterday. The matcha tiramisu and yuzu cheesecake were pretty good, but I’m glad they came in bite-sized portions, because they were not good enough (to me) to eat a whole serving, but very much enjoyed the tastes. Kinda thinking about that yuzu cheesecake though… but only 5 bites worth of the cheesecake.

Honestly, all in all… would not recommend. Lots of factors involved, but my new baseline is “Is the food and price worth getting sick tomorrow?” And the answer is no. Cute views, but you’re paying for an aesthetic. And for the price tag? Y’all better not ask me to go back again. But if y’all did… I’ll just order the pork belly hash with the steak (no eggs). The fat content alone will have me sick, but I do not want anything else on that menu, except maybe the brussels sprouts. Unfortunately… such a subpar experience, y’all will not find me going back for dinner*!!

*unless I cannot find a Japanese restaurant in DC that serves whiskey, wagyu, and sashimi… at a better price-quality point… There was Shōtō but… that price point still has me sick to my stomach.

We were moseying on about what to do, so we walked around the waterfront for a bit, took some pics. I’d like to take a moment to thank my core strength for helping me get up on an unstable moving platform to take some pics. Not that I was worried about dying if I fell off, but my coccyx JUST healed from snowboarding season, and I did NOT want to fracture it again. After our photoshoot, we checked out Moonraker at the Pendry in DC.

Miss ma’am chatted up a random guy at the bar who we were sitting next to, and we all got to chatting. There was a point in time where I felt as if he was recording everything…

… but I don’t think he was. Or maybe he was. I looked at the camera and smiled anyways. Luckily, nothing bad was said. We (and by we, I mean me and him) ended up talking about sci-fi movies/shows, books, and relationships. I thought it was so cute how he flew into DC to see this girl that he’s hoping for something special with. Meanwhile, my friend and I were complaining about dating in the district. And I may have been moping around about how to act cool and composed like a cucumber, and while he gave generic guy-coded advice (very much appreciated, actually), he took our convo as a “Not interested” in him, because, well, wasn’t (listen, if you’re pushing 50… And you don’t want kids… *scratches head*).

But also… he lead with relationships and talked about his. I was just being a supportive random girl at a bar listening to a random guy that my friend tried to chat up at a nice bar, tryna make money moves, while sipping on some water. And then I decided to talk about myself, because, why not.

But anywhooooo, as I was reflecting on my day, I think I’m going to utilize the blonde more often. The blonde with the dress? I’ve never had so many people randomly walk up to me to compliment me. Unfortunately, I was in a quasi-foul mood all day, so took up so much energy to thank everyone. I used to be such a social bug with a quick-charge social battery. Now? Y’all can find me binge watching Anime (currently watching Naruto for the first time, trying to push past S6-9 filler episodes) or some SciFi or Horror show in the comforts of my bed with my dogs. So, it’s June… here’s to leaving the house more, exploring more, deepening my relationships (mainly platonic because I feel so bad at how absent I’ve been while going through my health issues), and tapping back into the basics that make me happy: writing! We’ll see how the rest of 2023 goes, but hoping to have y’all come along on the ride with me!

8pm, my carriage turns into a pumpkin. Daytime outings > night!

Bottomless Mims & Rooftop Reds: A Sh*tty Video Journey

Yes. You read that correctly. A shitty video journey. As in I tried to make a video by myself (my free subscription expired and if I don’t decide to pursue videomaking… well I didn’t want to pay for it) and the video, sucked. You can even say that the video is shitty. Trust me, you can see for yourself later. But hey, here’s a picture of the interior of Boqueria. Tres chic, oui?

Can my basement bar look like this?

Tres cool, non? Parlez-vous francais? Non? Ok. Back to me. What had happened with the video was… I forgot to take pictures. And videos. I forget I can just take a million and filter through them, instead of 5 and making them work for EVERYTHING. So, I apologize in advance for my “pictures.” It’s been stressful, y’all. If you cut me some slack, I PROMISE I’ll update more frequently. Pinky promise. I think this is the first promise I made, right?

Good food, shitty video. Welp.

Studying for the bar exam and job searching… and boy and friend issues? Whew. Alexa, play “Jesus, take the wheel.” Anyways. You’re not here to read about my life (I mean, you are, but who wants to read a sob story about my life? You? Oh, ok. Later.) But let’s be real, you want to look at subpar pics of food. And who am I to deny you such simple pleasures?

Did you watch the video… Hahaha. Haha. Ha. Yeah. I’ma work on it. Let’s break it down.

Boqueria:

4 tapas, 2 brunch plates or a paella, 1 dessert, unlimited brunch drinks. Yeah, sis, we talking about mimosas and red, white, and rose sangria. Uh, don’t try the white one. Please. Abeg. Don’t. It tasted like banana liquor. I just- Please don’t. I mean, maybe you’ll like it. Or maybe I had a bad batch. But… I can still taste it *frowny face.* But the mimosas were superior. But if you are looking for a good bottomless sangria place… I got you covered. Check out for my La Tasca post.

So our four tapas–
1) Albodingas: Lamb meatballs and goat cheese? You honestly can NEVER go wrong.
2) Pan con Tomate con Jamon: I don’t normally like bread, but man this bread slapped.

3) Pimientos de Padron: Haven’t had shishito peppers before. Would have switched it out for the meatballs, but my body needed some greens.
4) Tortilla Espanola: No. The garlic aioli was good though.

The Paella– thick, just how I like it :). Except could have done without the over medium eggs on top. But we were so full by the time it came out, we snacked on it. It made a great post-brunch-hangover snack though. The chicken and pork belly were just… *chefs kiss*

[User error: Photo unavailable. Please refresh browser.]

The Dessert– OK I AM SORRY NO PHOTO AVAILABLE. I totally blanked. This is hard. How do real food bloggers do this? It was a sundae with churros and a sparkler. It was real cute. But. I forgot. So we’re just going to move on real quick.

Brooklyn Reds:

So first off, the hike to Brooklyn Navy Yard was not fun. The guard asked us if we had a barcode to get in. She must have taken pity on us because she let us in anyways. We had to walk around to find a weird lil building, go up a couple flights of stairs, and then we finally got to the top. Perfect weather, beautiful views, not even pictures. So enjoy one of me, say cheese.

Brooklyn Reds brews all of their wines on their rooftop. Let me just say, overpriced wines if you’re drinking it on the rooftop. Literally double. NY really is trying to get your money in any way possible. They have a hammock: I fell off. Swingy chairs: got a cute IG pic. Cornhole: my 4 years of training at a southern school went down the drain. All in all, would do it again*

*ask for tips though because those prices weren’t it, sorry not sorry.

So take away tips… More videos. More pics. Better quality. Less drunk? Thanks for checking in!

Champagne in my Membrane — BrunchFest ‘19

Hello friends, fans, and others. Miss me? You missed me. I really won’t boggle you down with my “Oh my goodness, my resolution is to be more attentive to my blog!” madness because… what’s the point of empty promises. I don’t like them. You don’t like them. Let’s skip alladat ;). Hey, but enjoy a picture of me in front of a mimosa bar sign, drinking what I believe is a mimosa (I ended up mixing all the liquors). What a great way to herald in February, right?

So first post of the new year??? BrunchFest 2019, hosted by Drink.Eat.Relax.

Yes, the sign was crinkled as hell, and I suck at taking pics

Too lazy to read the whole thing? Not same, but I’ll throw you a bone anyways.

+: “free” booze: champagne, rose, spritzers, ales, henny. bloody mary’s, boozy coffee bar, mimosa bar.
+: “free” food: eggs, sausage, bacon, mini-quiche, mini-poptarts, mini chicken biscuits, ham biscuits, bagel bites, donuts.
+: unlimited booze: well this is self-explanatory
-: the price: $77 with service fees? hahaha. for the lack of food there was… and long lines for alcohol… humph.
-: the food: continental breakfast, nothing from local food places (except the chicken biscuits lol)
-: the layout: take a rectangle square and put up awkward dividers.

Would I do it again? Only if I get the tickets on sale. Read on for a slightly longer (not by much) explanation. Or better yet, watch the video I tried creating that gives you no insights on the cons of the event.

I tried… I really did. No idea how to shrink the video. Bear with me as I figure this out. I might just have to download to YouTube and upload here… So much extra work, but I guess you guys are worth it (right, y’all are worth it…?) So stay tuned. For now, apologies.

So the video is kinda cool right? I did none of the work except provide the pictures and videos, thanks to Magisto App. So one thing I CAN promise you is that I will try to incorporate videos into my blogs. Let’s look forward to how my video “editing” progresses.

First of all, there should have been directions to the location because we, and others, walked around looking like that Swaggy P meme where he is confused as all heck, okay. But eventually we found it. ID check. Wristband. Security eyeing you. Ticket check. Plastic BrunchFest cup. Mimosa line!!!

The whole venue was explored in about 10 minutes, walking every square inch of the place. We scouted before we pounced. And by pounced, we meant alcohol since there was no food we were dying to try. And we had a lot of alcohol. I also tried Henny for the first time. Mixed it with champagne and orange juice. Talk about a turn up brunch.

As you can see… turnt.

If we’re being honest… there really isn’t much to talk about. There were vendors there who were trying to sell you clothing in your drunken stupor. There were also representatives from banks trying to get you to sign up for their bank? There were sweepstakes people also. Honestly, I would have enjoyed the whole thing more had there been no vendors. It would have been better if they were replaced by more food or drink stations, or even places to sit and high tables to eat at, but beggars can’t be choosers.

I did enjoy tasting samples from local distilleries and wineries, but not worth the full price paid. In the end, I did have fun. It is what you make of it, but unless the layout is changed, probably will not be going back (unless tickets are cheaper). I’m hoping to go to NYC’s BrunchCon. So long as it isn’t on my graduation (holy shite, yes, I’m GRADUATING from LAW SCHOOL), you’ll catch me there.

As always, hugs and kisses. I’ll catch y’all on the flip side. Enjoy some more stills with my friends from the day.

Bottomless Mimosas: Lago

Wow, hey. Did y’all miss me or did y’all miss me? Because I def did NOT miss myself. But shout out to the wonderful souls who kept harassi–checking in on me. This post is for you ;). Look at the G L O W. Anyways.

lago2811_facetune_14-10-2018-16-26-40.jpg

So, let’s take you through my life from June all the way through now: nothing. Whew, glad we got caught up! Well, in all seriousness, amidst the boy drama, academic struggle, mental breakdown, friend drama, and food relationships, I’m still standing and going strong. I’m down weight and feeling healthier than before. I’ve also been switching in and out of vegan-seagan-keto etc. Not sure what I’m doing but I’m eating foods I like when I want. I am mainly plant-based. I don’t eat gluten (slight allergy). I avoid things with lactose (intolerance). And… that’s it really. I’m doing HIIT, yoga, barre, cycling, and strength training, too! Oh, and being natural is getting easier, thank GOODNESS.

And now, I’m back. And I know last time I said I would be better with this, so I’m not going to promise such a thing, but I will promise to try harder. As for the other updates I did promise… The travel diaries (London) will be up soon. During winter break (I know, 2 months from now) everything should be up and ready for your viewing pleasure. But, we’re gonna try to get it all up and running smoothly before then.

lago2612

But! You’re here because you saw the title “Bottomless Mimosas” and if you’re a Clevelander or Cleveland-visitor (student, friend, etc), you’re probably thinking “They have such a thing?” (I’m from the East Coast where we speak in bottomless brunch).

After HOURS of searching and calling different rumored restaurants… Ya girl FINALLY found a bottomless mimosas place. And, ya girl finally just recovered from that Olympic sport.

Let me present to you: Lago (Bireria, Cucina, Enotecca).

lago2636

Service was a little… slow. We sat down for 15 or so minutes without anybody checking in on us. We started off with the bottomless mimosas right away. We were going to make the most bang for our buck. It was $15 for the bottomless, so truly, even 3 would be cost efficient. 5 would be better. But 10?! A steal! 15 would have been… hospital inducing honestly.

I am used to mimosas being like at least 75% champagne, but these were a good… 50%? Or something like that. But I don’t really eat grains, so alcohol hit me H A R D.

So mimosas are mimosas. But the food? So, listen. I asked for the wagyu steak and eggs… $64. My eyes popped out of my head. I don’t mind spending money for some good steak, but for breakfast? Am I made out of money? I was literally just there for the bottomless mimosas. Whew, chile…

lago2623

We ended up getting the burgers. Mine sans buns and a side of tater tots. The burger was goooooood. And the house chips were very good too, but the tater tots were AMAZING.

lago2630

One got the Avocado Benedict. And… It pictured well. It was literally guac on toast with an egg. Not sure what we were actually expecting, but it wasn’t that. We don’t recommend it (even though it was recommended to us). So we were able to sub it out for the breakfast burrito and that tasted amazing.

lago2645

The waiters we had were pretty cool. Lots of jokes and was pretty quick on the refills (the most important part).

The interior was very nice and I would love to come back at night for their dinner menu. If you’ve tried it, do let me know!

We showed up at 11am and didn’t leave until almost 2? And we all had takeout boxes. I ended up snacking out of it while sobering up when walking around.

After, we just goofed around in the Flats, one of my favorite places in Cleveland. I got a pic with a Rolls Royce (yes, I’m annoying).

lago2745

Walked around by the water and I pretended to be an IG model. Then I ate a hot dog as we played some corn hole. Then when I got home, I drank some electrolyte water and took my sweet sweet drunk booty to bed. And woke up at 7pm. And went straight back to sleep.

lago2702

Ah, the joys of day drinking. Overall, I do recommend Lagos; if not for their food then for the bottomless mimosas. If not for that, then because I told you to.

Market Garden Brewery

Happy Easter, friends! Decided to hop on over the Ohio City to get some yummy tummy brunch. I had wanted to go to Cleveland Chop, since they have $7 “pitchers” (maybe like 12 ounces or so) of mimosas and margaritas. BUT, it’s Easter Sunday, and I did not make my brunch reservations in time (aka a week or two ago), so I did not find a time at Cleveland Chop. I also wanted to go to Urban Farmer… But guess what? Also full! This is what happens when you underestimate Cleveland. But, by the glory of God, Market Garden Brewery had available times.

MK 7
mkt grdn bc y not

MK 16
beer beer beer beer beer

I’ve been here once before for dinner. Then, I got the buffalo cauliflower tacos (highly recommend!) and this cocktail drink with St. Germaine (one of my favorite liquors). My friend and I also split this tray of different mustards and meats, and a scotch egg. This was my first time having a scotch egg, and I really did enjoy it. But, this post is about the brunch we had! It was delicious. First, we started off with a flight of mimosas. From most favorite to least, it was passion fruit, strawberry, blackberry, and white peach. I LOVE passion fruit. LOVE. LOOVVVEEE. Every day when we were in Haiti, I would have all the passion fruit cocktails. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, I don’t care. I had it.

MK 4
From left to right… blackberry, strawberry, passion fruit, white peach.

So naturally, since we all loved the passion fruit mimosa (I love my cultured friends with good taste), we got a carafe of it.

MK 13
passion fruit, it’s like i’m back in haiti

I’m not really an egg person when it comes to brunch. If I get eggs, it’s usually with some steak, or on top of a burger… But, I’m seagan(ish), so could not opt for my burger with a friend egg on top for brunch. Instead, I got the crab cake tacos. At first, I was suspect. I normally don’t eat crab cakes outside of Maryland, let alone the true east coast. But since I became seagan(ish), I had to let that curtain fall. Ohio has pretty good seafood. Where it comes from? No idea. Was it tasty? Yup!

MK 8
not maryland crab cakes but yum nonetheless

So the crab cake tacos were topped with hollandaise sauce (hence the “ish” in seagan-ish), red cabbage, cilantro, tomatoes, and red onions. The dish came with a side of guacamole and pickled jalapeños. Uh, I would not have picked jalapenos again, but Market Garden’s guac? Definitely better than Chipotle’s, but not as good as mine. Stay tuned for posts about my guac.

MK 10
egg burritos w/ chorizos

My friend got the egg burrito with potatoes and chorizo, and her boyfriend got the same thing I did (honestly, the crab cake tacos were very VERY yummy, and I honestly would get it again, no shame).

MK 9
on easter we brunch with friends

I really do enjoy the vibe of Market Garden, and Ohio City! If it wasn’t too far away from my school, I would probably live in Ohio City. The other places (Porco, Bier Market, Bar Cento, Speakeasy, Townhall, Bakersfield…) are so cool, and I would just love to walk downstairs from my apartment to grab a craft drink or a paleo entree at Townhall, or a pitcher or margaritas from Baskersfield… Unfortunately, I’m in University Circle. Sucks. But, I will be doing more outings, most likely when I get back from summer vacation.

MK 6
Oh! Dress by Elizabeth and James. So cute. 

Until next time, Ohio City!