{Double Date: Greenville Ave.}

New York/New Jersey, Dallas, Seattle, Dallas, Boston, Dallas.
Annnnnd done.
It’s been 3 weeks of marathon travel.  Some for fun, some for work – regardless Pete and I have been missing our home and our friends, so it seemed only fitting to get out of house on Friday and let someone else pay for our A/C for the night.

We met up with our friends Angela & Bryan to enjoy some time exploring the ever-growing Lower Greenville to enjoy some grub and drinks.

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{HG Supply Co.} provided real (and delicious) food with a beet-infused tequila cocktail.  Oh, and there was a “sunset toast” for the whole restaurant at 6:30pm.  Don’t miss it…it was awesome.

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Date Day: {Coffee House Cafe, Dallas World Aquarium & Taco Ocho}

Aren’t 3-day weekends just the best?
They make me feel like I can actually relax and just enough the day rather than trying to cram in all the chores and errands to make the week less hectic.

Memorial Day came in just the nick of time – the weekends have seemed endlessly packed and time to explore and eat and do the things we love has been lacking.  So, we committed Saturday of this long weekend to fun – fun in new brunch locales, with sea creatures and topping it off with some delicious tacos!

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{Coffee House Cafe} was a life changer.  Why it’s only 10 minutes from our house and why we hadn’t been there in the two years of living in it’s proximity?  I’ll never forgive myself.

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The Signature House Latte was a perfect start to a feast filled with rancheros and benedicts.

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Our stuffed bellies made the drive to the {Dallas World Aquarium} late in the morning to avoid the crowds and strollers that were inevitably going to take over the place by noon. Continue reading

Date Day: {Dallas Coffee Shops & Pecan Lodge}

A few weeks back I decided to take a much needed 3-day weekend.  The months after the holidays always drain me as the there are no longer countdowns to the next few days off, no more anticipation or excitement surrounded by family, no holiday parties to look forward to and a general lack of the cheer and joy found around town during that time.  As I was staring at my calendar and my next holiday or vacation wasn’t going to fall until Memorial Day, I figured it would be good for the soul to catch up on some much needed R&R and spend some quality time with Pete.

I love trying new food and drinks but exist in an odd sort of introversion in that I hate crowds.  Trying a new restaurant on a Friday night?  Count me out.  The wait and drones of fellow dinner-goers about pushes me over edge and can pretty quickly ruin a culinary experience for me (see also my review of {The Blind Butcher}).  So over the years I’ve accumulated quite a list of places I’d like to try “someday” and by “someday” I mean during I time when I can comfortably find a seat and enjoy my company.

Having some free time to check some locations off the Dallas Eatery Bucket List?  Sounds like a winner date to me!

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We started the morning with a trip to {Ascension Coffee} off of Oak Lawn.  Wood decor filled with bright red chairs, chill music and tons of folks having business meetings, I was informed by the barista that they had taken a step “back to basics” so there wouldn’t be an specialty lattes or frozen drinks in sight.  I stuck with a class chai latte and HOLY SMOKES it was so amazing.  The rim of spices perfectly complimented my cream cheese danish and made for freakin’ amazing morning coffee!

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And what would be a date day in Texas without BBQ?  We made our way over to the {Dallas Farmer’s Market} to stand in the long line down Shed 2 for the much raved about {Pecan Lodge}.  The 1-hour wait (arriving 15 minutes after opening) wasn’t even close to a waste once I tasted The “Hot Mess”.  Chipotle mayo…and that’s all I have to say about that.
Pete took the classic route and ordered some of their handmade sausage which was out of this stinkin’ world!  We were so stuffed (even without sides) that we both took 1/2 our meal home.  And, go figure, it made totally amazing leftovers too.

And to successfully finish the day?  More coffee of course!  We headed up Lower Greenville to the gothic-esque {Mudsmith} to enjoy Caramel-Vanilla lattes and espresso.  The hip crowd was perfectly complimented by the animal busts lining the walls and beers readily on tap for afternoon visitors.  Not quite as friendly and fun as Ascension but the stellar coffee, quiet atmosphere and small porch area made up for shortage of amazing customer service.

Stuffed and highly caffeinated, Pete and I decided to call it an early afternoon.  And a date done before 3:00pm on a Friday?  That’s a win in my book!

Happy coffee drinking, friends!
{Devin}

{The Blind Butcher}

We saw, we ate and…there was a lot to be desired.
{The Blind Butcher} has been one of “those” places on the media circuit lately.  Cool, located in the always hip Lower Greenville, crawling with good looking people, craft beer and specializing in one culinary sphere or another.  (In this case it’s pork and poutine fries).

With the endless articles and reviews popping up all over the interwebs, I thought we were in for the experience of a pig-eating lifetime.  By the time the check came, all this little piggie wanted to do was go freakin’ home.

We arrived at 5:00pm for an early dinner hoping to beat the crowd and instead found a packed house with not a seat in sight.  I wiggled my way to the back patio where the endless supply of single, 20-somethings were drinking local beers and tending to their dogs.  I quickly spotted a table and thought we’d get to enjoy dinner outside…quick catch – no eating on the patio until next month.  Other patios – 1, Blind Butcher – 0.

We enjoyed the relatively quiet patio that backs into Dallas’ {Truck Yard} while waiting for our friends to arrive.  Before the half hour ended we were alerted by text that our table was ready inside.  And that’s pretty much where the fun ended.

You don’t really realize until you’re sitting in the restaurant in the middle of the day and can’t read the menu that the building may be better suited for vampires than dinner.  That coupled with the deafening echo of the restaurant-goers’ lively drunken conversation and single, 20-something flirting made this probably the worst sensory experience I’ve ever had during a dining venture.

The spotty service and outdated drink menus made for a semi-frustrating ordering experience.  All that coupled with the fact that I had to yell at my fellow dinner guests to try to have conversation made me sing endless praises when the food made it to our table much faster than anticipated.  With a spread of bacon salad, sausage and the much-raved about poutine fries in front of our faces, we dug in…only to wonder what everyone had been raving about.

The food was…fine?  Yeah, I think “fine” is the right word.  Certainly not worth the jarring atmosphere and lofty bill.
I mean, we took our leftovers with us but through them in the dumpster when we got home.  The smell wasn’t even appealing at that point and had us scratching our heads about how this could be deemed one of Lower Greenville’s “must eat” treats.

I think next time we’ll stay kosher for dinner.

{Devin}