Oh the food we will eat…Mario’s Place

For a little date night we decided to take a hop, skip, and jump over to Riverside.

I had been craving pasta for a bit now so we decided on Italian. Hubby found the place and made the reservation.

IMG-20200202-WA0017

We were seated immediately upon arrival. On Yelp the attire recommended was California casual. If you don’t know it just means some are usually casual and some are super dressed. Being date night we had dressed up a little and I am so glad because so was everyone else there.

The restaurant was a lot more formal than either of us were thinking. White table cloths and prettily folded napkins greeted us at our candle lit table.

IMG-20200202-WA0027

I had glanced through photos on Yelp and saw some items that were popular. We had already decided to skip apps to save room for a pasta dish and a pizza.

Our final decision ended up being the mushroom ravioli and their pizza of the night-a red sauce, mozz cheese, cauliflower, sausage creation.

After we ordered we were brought this beautiful bread-warm, crusty outside and oh so soft inside. It came with butter at the most perfect temp. Super easy to spread without being overly melty.

IMG-20200202-WA0025

Since we don’t eat sausage we got the ‘za sans sausage. Even though it ended up being a cheese pizza with cauliflower it was a very delicious pizza with cauliflower.

IMG-20200202-WA0009

The sauce was savory, the cheese had good pull, the chilli flakes added some heat and the cauliflower added a nice textural change. We each had one slice and decided to dig into the pasta.

The mushroom ravioli was swimming in cream sauce and porcini mushrooms. It had a nice heap of shaved parm on top too.

IMG-20200202-WA0021

The ravioli was filled with the most savory mushroom filling. The sauce was creamy, but not overly so and very well seasoned. The mushrooms added a nice meaty texture and flavor.

I’m not big into white sauce pizza or pasta but this pasta has me rethinking all of that!

We ended up taking the rest of the pizza home since we were so full from the pasta. Not to worry…I ate every last slice over the period of a week 😉

We had a lovely time at Mario’s place. If you happen to live in or near Riverside it’s a great little spot for a date night!

Our Valentine’s Date

I know I’m a bit late posting this, but I am happy to finally share our Valentine’s Day. Being completely transparent, we hadn’t planned on doing anything major. We were going to stay in, cook dinner, and watch a movie. Everyday is basically Valentine’s Day for me because I get to spend it with the best husband ever, but he knows how much I love a good date night so out we went.

IMG-20200216-WA0012

We had no reservations anywhere but forged ahead and walked to an outdoor mall with plenty of options. Our plan was King’s Fish House but the wait would be an hour to an hour and a half. We decided to check out somewhere else and put our names down for Kabuki because the wait was 35 minutes!

While “waiting” we walked around and asked about some other waiting times. Lucille’s BBQ had a wait for three hours!! I was astonished!

Thankfully for us all of that killed some time and we arrived back at Kabuki and chatted for a little while before it was our turn to get seated. We were both so happy to finally be sitting and looking at a menu! To say we went a bit overboard with ordering is being kind.

Anytime we go get sushi we always get edamame. Whether it’s plain or garlicky and spicy we love the stuff. It’s something delicious to munch on and distract you while you wait for everything else. This time was no different and we ordered the spicy garlic edamame.

IMG-20200216-WA0017

This menu had pictures and when I noticed the black miso cod it looked so good so we had to try it. The cod was crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. The freshness of the cucumbers and carrots that came with it added a nice contrast to the perfectly cooked fish.

IMG-20200216-WA0006

Ever since discovering spicy tuna on crispy rice we always look for it on the menu. There’s something so magical about the tuna piled high on the crispy cake of rice. The texture of the soft fish and the crispy rice patty really make it delectable.

IMG-20200216-WA0016

We ordered three sushi rolls. The first was a nice basic spicy tuna roll. It was good and fresh! Nothing to complain about and nothing to write home about..

IMG-20200216-WA0005

I wish I could remember what the 2nd and 3rd rolls were, but I can’t and I’ve been combing through the menu now for a good 10 minutes and have had no luck figuring it out.

I think the second one was the Sun Kissed Roll with salmon the outside and spicy tuna and avocado on the inside.

IMG-20200216-WA0011

The other had this coconut curry base with red bell pepper, cilantro, and shrimp on top of a California roll (maybe??)..

IMG-20200216-WA0014

We both left feeling fully and happy! It was a little panicky in the beginning trying to figure out a plan B on the fly, but thankfully it all worked out! We had a great time and enjoyed spending some together time…goodness I do love my guy!

For Valentine’s are you guys stay at home and relax to the max people or go out people? Let me know in the comments below!

Oh the food we will eat…Republique

We recently had a fun little date night in LA which included going to a restaurant I’ve had on the list for a while now. This was definitely quite the experience and we really enjoyed it.

IMG-20191206-WA0004

We were seated and brought menus and asked about any allergens before being given some recommendations. When we mentioned not eating pork it was passed on and remembered by our server. I loved the attentiveness of the staff and the attention to detail they took. They really worked hard at creating a wonderful experience for their diners and it was very much appreciated by us.

IMG-20191206-WA0022

We perused through the menu and decided on some bread and butter, a cauliflower dish, and some roasted chicken for our main.

Before our food came out we were brought out the cutest little bowls of this creamy mushroom soup. It was so delicious and umami in flavor and the perfect way to warm up our appetites.

IMG-20191206-WA0021

Next up was the warm bread and butter with a dash of salt on the side. The butter was shaped and the perfect texture/temp for spreading it on the bread. If you’ve been around Grubbing with Jess long enough you know how much I love some warm bread and butter. This bread was crusty on the outside and soft on the inside-it wasn’t so hard it would cut up your mouth, but just enough to give you some texture.

IMG-20191206-WA0000

This cauliflower dish is something I still think about. The layers and depth of flavor in this dish was just incredible. There was the roasted cauliflower, a sweet potato hummus, and a tangy yogurt sauce. It was such a gorgeous presentation and the flavors combined together to create the perfect bite.

IMG-20191206-WA0011

The side for our chicken dish contained pork so we had fries on the side and man oh man were these the best fries. I have never understood under-seasoned fries or uneven seasoning, but these fries were the perfect amount of saltiness and served with a super garlicky aioli.

IMG-20191206-WA0015

I could have been perfectly content just eating these, but then there was the chicken…

IMG-20191206-WA0027

I know it may seem like just chicken, but you guys this chicken was so juicy and tasty. I am picky when it comes to meat and any off flavor usually means I won’t eat it, but this chicken was just incredible and so savory.

After having a line up of all these wonderful dishes I couldn’t help but order dessert. We went for this brown butter almond cake with stone fruit and ice-cream and they poured this hot chocolate sauce on it when it was brought to the table. Again the textures and flavors were layered and brought together in the most magical way.

IMG-20191206-WA0029

If we ever have an opportunity to go back I would do it in a heartbeat. If you’re able to get a dinner reservation I highly recommend it and I’ve heard wonderful things about the brunch as well.

Thanks for reading friends! Till next time!!

A Century City Adventure

When we lived in the Valley we loved heading into LA and walking around Century City. To this day it is my favorite mall and since moving out of the Valley and LA we hadn’t really visited in a while.

We changed all that and made a little date night adventure out of it. After the somewhat long drive into the city we needed a little snack to power us through so we stopped by Shake Shack and tried their Chicken Shack and got some fries. I loved the dilly flavor and the green pickles in this chicken sandwich-I would get it again! The fries are always a win because they remind me of childhood. I love how crispy they are!

20191122_163359

While walking around we spotted Randy’s and got donuts to share because what is an adventure without donuts? These donuts were so good and had some substance to them while being so soft and pillowy and melt in your mouth!

20191122_17002320191122_170450

We had meant to do some shopping, but totally got side tracked by some of the new spots that had opened up. There was toffee shop that opened up and were sampling their goods. We tried a sample of the almond toffee and their toffee popcorn-both sweet and yummy!

While passing by we saw another place sampling cheese tarts and after having a sample we had to get a couple to have. We decided on the almond and strawberry and both were so GOOD!

20191122_173335

We actually had the tarts with some coffee (I had an espresso and hubs had iced coffee) from La Colombe. It’s our favorite coffee place-they literally have some of the smoothest tasting coffee I have ever had!

20191122_173115

After Century City we went to the Grove and walked around until we were ready to visit our last two spots and head back home! It’s kind of a tradition for us to go to Vito’s Pizza and SK Donuts, but recently Alcove (for cake) has been added to that list so that is what we did and how we ended our night!

Vito’s is hands down the best NY style pizza place we’ve found in Southern California and I will always encourage anyone that is craving a NY slice and living in LA to try it out.

That’s where I’ll leave this post! Until next time friends!!

Have a great weekend!

Good food, great company

Happy Monday lovely people!

I hope you’re all kicking the week off strong! We’ve been enjoying some yummy food the past week or so and I thought it would be fun to share 🙂

We kicked the weekend off with a little date night at Paul Martin’s. We looked through the menu, but finally settled on getting a couple of mains. We had to get the short rib since it was so good last time and we got a blackened ribeye. We shared and loved both dishes!

A little flash back to the week though would give us this homemade dinner of salmon and veggies. I found this mustardy cajun sauce recipe to use and I’m a little obsessed with it. I can almost taste it!

20191029_175319

We had been on a burger kick that got interrupted by some busy schedules, but we finally jumped back on the wagon Sunday and were not disappointed. These burgers were so good-caramelized onions, garlicky cheddar cheese, pickles, lettuce, and In n’ Out spread. Also, carrot fries!

20191027_143300

I think we temporarily went crazy and decided to buy a Costco cake-the only reason this is a little wild is because we are TWO people…but we had bought this cake before and knew we loved it. The chocolate tuxedo cake is so good! I love the layers of texture and flavor! Highly recommend-even if you are only two people 🙂

20191027_161149

I love yummy food, but I have to say that good food is made a million times better by great company. I love being married to my foodie partner in crime and each day (food related or not) is a wonderful adventure with you.

That’s gonna wrap up my good eats post, but I’m dying to know what you’re good eats were in the comments below!

Comfort food and cozy vibes

I don’t know if it’s because the temps got slightly cooler here or what, but we’ve been eating some serious comfort foods and so I have some fun random pictures to share with you guys.

After looking high and low for a bagel place here we have finally maybe found one! I really wanted a bagel one Saturday and after a nice long hike we found one at 42nd Street Bagel Cafe. I got the super onion bagel with lox (they were out of the everything bagel 😦 ). This bagel reminded me so much of a NY bagel-it was chewy with a dense crumb and I would definitely come back and get some Sunday morning bagels!

20191005_122912

This was a big comfort food night at Yard House. We ordered what felt like everything-the chicken lettuce wraps, buffalo cauliflower, roasted Brussel sprouts and potatoes, cheeseburger, and the truffle fries.

20191004_18284620191004_18285020191004_18285320191004_183117

My favorite thing here had to be the lettuce wraps and they were so delicious that I haven’t been able to stop thinking about them-so much so that I am making shrimp lettuce wraps tonight!

We grabbed some sweet treats from Sprout’s and some of these were good and others not so much. The glazed lemon cookie was a not favorite. The glaze was so sweet and didn’t pair well with the lemon cookie. The rest were actually pretty yummy!

20191004_173119

In order to balance out all the comfort food I went to Panera and ordered a Mediterranean grain bowl. I enjoyed this much more than I thought I would. The rice, chicken, hummus, and all the fresh ingredients were really delicious! I would get this again without the dollop of yogurt on the side.

20191006_120901

I ordered this fish dish from Luna Modern Mexican Grill when I went out to lunch with the girls. It was pretty, but not the best thing I’ve ever had…

20191002_124145

Of course, we love sweets a lot in this house and whether that’s cookies or ice-cream we’ve been eating it all!

Have you guys been feeling the need for comfort food recently? How are the temps where you’re living?

Weekend Randomness

Weekends for me aren’t necessarily Saturdays and Sundays…they are basically any days that I am off and sometimes that falls on an actual weekend and sometimes it falls on a Tuesday. That is the beauty of inpatient nursing…that being said I did have an actual weekend, but a long one so I thought it would be fun to share that with you.

On days that I am off and hubby works I try to cook up something yummy, nutritious and different then our quick throw together stuff. Salmon is definitely one of those meals that gets thrown into rotation-hubby loves it when salmon is on the menu and it fits into that yummy and nutritious category.

20190912_181927

We had this piece of salmon with some roasted cauli and since we had a few carrots leftover I roasted those up too.

I’ve been enjoying rice bowls for lunches/dinners recently. I have honestly never been a rice person, but recently I’ve been craving it. I love throwing in whatever veggies we have on hand along with some beefless ground and this green sriracha from Trader Joes.

20190913_122828

When hubby and I finally had the chance to go out we hit up a Mediterranean spot, The Diplomat, to get in some good eats. To start we had the hummus, pickles, and falafel.

20190914_184944

20190914_185345

We ended up sharing the lamb chops for our main. I think the hummus may have been one of my favorite parts of the meal. It was so smooth and creamy!

20190914_185800

On Sunday morning, post HIIT I toasted up a Kodiak Cake waffle (yes, still eating them!) and spread some peanut butter and mashed up some raspberries on top. Will be doing this again!

20190915_105124

During our grocery run we ended up hungry and found ourselves in the car eating rotisserie chicken and some cake we picked up from Porto’s. The carrot cake was my favorite outta the two and I will definitely be adding that to my list of items to get from there.

20190915_130752

We wrapped our weekend with In n’ Out and flan from Porto’s along with a nice long walk. I hope you guys enjoyed the post!

What’s your favorite weekend thing to do?

 

Oh the food we will eat…Paul Martin’s

One particular Friday night, after watching Hobbs and Shaw at AMC, we decided to grab some dinner at Paul Martin’s.

Mind you I had already been eyeballing this place and seen some things (quite a few things) that really piqued my interest and knew we needed to come here. We arrived and were seated pretty quickly. I immediately loved the vibe-it was a pretty filled restaurant with a good buzz of chatter filling the air. It was lively!

We glanced at the menu and figured out what we wanted to order and went for it! We decided on the grilled artichoke for an app, the short rib for our main, and picked roasted cauliflower and Brussels to add on as sides.

We started with this beautiful bread and butter situation. The bread was just slightly warm, but so soft in the middle and crusty on the outside. The butter was salted and soft-super easy to spread! I honestly don’t know if there is anything that tops a good bread and butter combo for me…it’s just so good.

20190802_204431

We have never had artichokes and we were a bit confused on how to eat it. To be completely honest we just looked it up and I kind of wish we had looked it up while there because we wasted a lot of edible artichoke :/ The pieces we did eat though were super flavorful and had that lovely charred, salty delicious taste that I adore!

20190802_204612

The roasted cauliflower and Brussels were so good. The cauliflower was nice and garlicky from the pieces of roasted garlic that were hidden amongst the chunks of cauliflower. The Brussels were crispy and soft and absolutely delicious.

20190802_205657

The short rib was so tender you didn’t need a knife and the mashed potatoes that came with it were very smooth and creamy.

20190802_205706

The food was a HUGE hit with us and the service was really great! We will definitely be keeping this place in mind as an option for date night. If you have a Paul Martin’s near you, you absolutely should check it out!

Oh the food we will eat…The State

During our move in week in order to get some sanity we decided to do a little date night. We went and saw a movie and happened to make in time for the happy hour menu (which is apparently all day on Monday).

It was such a beautiful day we decided to sit outside and take in the weather. After perusing the menu we decided on the Brussels sprouts, short rib tacos, and a burger.

I really loved the Brussels-the crispy, crunchy, charred pieces are always my favorite and that dollop of goat cheese on top rounded it all out and added that much needed creamy tang.

20190701_194624

The husband really loved the short rib tacos. Besides looking beautiful (those colors!) these were meaty and fresh and crunchy and wonderful!

20190701_194628

The burger was a wonderful cheeseburger of sorts and it did end up falling apart towards the end, but it was worth the mess. The salad on the side was really pretty and a good standard salad-nothing to write home about!

20190701_195544

20190701_195548

We headed out for frozen yogurt after this, but really enjoyed our experience at The State. Since our whole order was off the happy hour menu the whole thing ended up being under $30? That’s a pretty cheap date night 🙂

What’s your favorite date night spot?

Oh the food we will eat…Bestia

Hubs and I love a good date night and it’s even better when things just fall into place. I had bought tickets for this musical comedy show at Second City and we were figuring out when and where to do dinner.

Somehow hubs was able to secure a reservation for 2 at 10pm. I don’t know if that sounds crazy, but this place is hard to get a table at. I had also had this place bookmarked for a while and so dinner at 10pm sounded like a fantastic idea 😉

Despite having reservations we still waited about half an hour, but there was seating outside with heaters so we were perfectly content (albeit a little starved).

When we finally got seated we looked over the menu and and decided pretty quickly! We decided to start with the smoked chicken liver pate and bone marrow that came with pasta.

While waiting for our food we took in the ambiance. It’s a very LA place…the music is loud, the decor is industrial hipster vibes. You’re yelling the whole time because you can’t hear each other even though you’re sitting next to each other…this can be fun sometimes, but this night I just wanted to have a conversation and break bread without breaking my eardrums!

Now the apps…

I was a leeeetttle bit worried about the chicken liver pate because I am not a chicken liver person or any liver really. This ended up being absolutely fine and hubby really enjoyed it. It arrived with warm bread and let’s be honest…you can spread anything on warm bread and it’s fantastic. It also came with a little side of bbq sauce and you were supposed to spread some pate and spread some bbq sauce and eat! It paired pretty nicely-the umami with the slightly sweet and tangy.

20190614_222801

The bone marrow dish came with a real bone and the lovely lady that brought it over scraped it out table side over this delicious pasta. This was my favorite dish of the night! The pasta was perfectly cooked and the flavors were savory and oh so good.

20190614_224648

For our main we ordered the margherita pizza (between San Diego and here, we were on a kick). This wasn’t the best margh I have ever had by any means, but I don’t think Bestia is the place to come for pizza. If I ever got a do over I would go with one of the other entrees.

20190614_225536

If you’re ever in LA and looking for a “nicer” place with that expensive hipster vibe this would be your jam!

Have you been to Bestia? What did you think?