The perfect Gin and Tonic

gandtMy key to a perfect G&T:  Hendricks and a slice of cucumber!  My good friend, Emily, taught me that.   I tried my best to enjoy them before, but realized I just couldn’t get past the smell of rubbing alcohol in other gins.

However, I will say it’s always good to give things another go, so over the weekend I tried a G&T using Tanquerey and it wasn’t all that bad.  But don’t worry Hendricks, I’ll always remain faithful to you.

They are very easy to make, but should you want the classic cocktail recipe here’s a great one.

And here’s a list of a few places in San Francisco to visit that I’ve heard have great gin cocktails (and the ones I’d try)…

Absinthe (Corpse Reviver #12)

Alembic (Charlie Chaplin)

Dosa (Bloody Marvelous)

And if you reeeealllly like gin, here’s a great book to pick up or perhaps gift.

Photo courtesy of Mariah’s Kitchen

Summer Solstice and Weekend Plans

Summer_solstice_stonehengeHappy First day of Summer!  I hope you all have amazing plans this weekend filled with lots of outdoor activities!  Which reminds me, Brent and I REALLY need to get a BBQ.  He cleaned our back porch and we now have room.  Hooray!

This weekend we don’t have too many set plans other than a dinner with friends at Piperade tomorrow night.  We might also try and get some pool time and drink a few of these in honor of the solstice.  A Sunday day trip over to Santa Cruz for a hike on the beach might be in order as well. This one looks fun and we can take Daisy!

Here are some other fun things happening around the Bay:

I swear we will make it to next year’s Sierra Nevada Music Festival.  I’ve been wanting to go FOREVER!

If you’re in the East Bay and in need of a little culture, check out the 10th Annual Berkeley World Music Festival.

Film of the Month:  Where the Wild Things Are at the Disney Museum.  And while you are there, you should check out the Down the Rabbit Hole exhibit.

Brent misses surfing in Florida and down in the (tad-bit) warmer So. Cal waters.  It might be too cold up here, but we can watch from the shore at the 19th Annual Surf City Classic in Santa Cruz

Last week I mentioned the SF Jazz Festival and now Stanford is kicking off their season with Herbie Hancock.

And here’s whats happening around the World:

Countries around the world are celebrating the Summer Solstice.  This morning, There was a particularly large celebration happening at Stonehenge.

Have a wonderful weekend!

photo courtesy of Bugbog

Travel Bug

Last night, Brent and I had dinner with our friends at Figo in Palo Alto.  Isn’t the name of the restaurant fun to say?  It makes me want to throw my hands up and say Figo with a thick accent like how a little old Italian man would say it.

Over some La Fin du Monde beers and a Bulleit Old Fashioned (which our server called the mullet) we started discussing and dreaming about upcoming travel plans.  I have had the travel itch for a while now, since it’s been several years since I’ve been out of the country.  My last trip was to Costa Rica and that was almost 7 years ago! And confession: Brent has NEVER been out of the country (except to TJ which really doesn’t count).

So now comes the fun part: Where do we go?  Should we do a European vacation(we’re thinking starting in Amsterdam, then traveling to Belgium, Germany and ending in Prague) or perhaps take a trip to Southeast Asia and go to Thailand and Indonesia?  How about staying a little closer to home and going to Vancouver or taking an Alaskan cruise?  And then again there’s always my favorite place in the world, Paris!

Where do you think would be the best place to visit for someone new to traveling?

Here are a few photos of the beautiful world we live in that are at the top of my list.

Thailand Belgium  Italy

From top to bottom (Ko Thao, Thaliand via ThatBohemianGirl), a tree tunnel in Belgium, Lake Sauris, Fruili, Italy)

Well that’s just peachy…

grilled-peach-salad_loveandlemons1

One of my favorite things about summer is the produce.  It’s refreshing to see so many beautiful fruits and veggies all over the markets and menus.

Saturday night, we ended up going to Campo 185 in Palo Alto, one of the newest farm-to-table restaurants popping up on the Peninsula.  On the menu was a grilled peach salad with wildflower honey.  It was perfect for summer…sweet and light.  It got me thinking that peaches are good in any course, from salads to entrees and of course dessert.

Here are a few recipes I’d love to try this summer.

Grilled Peach Salad with Mint Pesto  (pictured above: via Love & Lemons)

Peach Gnocchi (via 101 Cookbooks)

Grilled Peaches with Bourbon Vanilla Whipped Cream (via theKitchn)

Peach Ricotta Tart (via The Forest Feast)

Enjoy!!

Karneval and weekend plans

Karneval 2013

My weekend is starting off with some exciting plans.  A few of my best gals and I have reservations at State Bird Provisions tonight.  Not only did my friend, Laura have to make these reservations 6 weeks ago, but she had to make them at 6am, exactly 6 weeks out.  I guess that’s how it goes when you wine and dine at the Best New Restaurant in the US. On Saturday, Brent and I are excited to finally check out the Palo Alto Farmers Market, which had it’s grand opening last weekend.  Later, we’ll head to a nice dinner with  some of our newest friends, a lovely couple that we’ve met since we moved up North.   Have a great weekend!

Here are a few other fun things going on around the Bay:

Napa Strawberry Festival with a wine and chocolate tasting portion too!

Spring Dog Festival.  I love that there is a festival totally geared toward my four-legged pup, Daisy.

Bay to Breakers is 102 years old on Sunday.

And around the world:

Berlin Karneval is this weekend!

photo courtesy of: Karneval-Berlin