Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Best Things Ashy Ever Ate - 2

The sequel took a while, but as they say, better late than never! So here's my second installment of some of the best things I have ever had. Additionally, I have come to realize that, through this series I would like to narrate some of the memorable experiences from my travels, wanderings and restaurant-outings.
What: Galinha Com Camaraoes
Where: Atasca Portuguese Dining in Cambridge, MA
We went to Atasca on Valentine's Day this year. J & I love trying out new cuisines and so he picked this place which was complete surprise for me! It was our first time trying the Portuguese cuisine. I ordered this yummy chicken savory dish that came with a red-heart flaky pastry (special Valentine’s Day touch) and was not sweet at all. It reminded me of the 'Indian' khari-biscuit; it's a soft, flaky, pastry which we eat usually by doing a dip-dip in the tea :)
If you love trying different cuisines and are in the Boston area, then you I would highly recommend you to try this place. 

What: Churros
Where: Toro Salao, Puerto Rico
We had one of the unique dining experiences at ‘Toro Salao’ in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico – alfresco and beneath the stars! I remember we tried the Spanish chilled veggie soup – Gazpacho, Chicken Paella (aka biryani) and finished off the meal with Churros! Churros are soft balls of dough, deep fried and then sprinkled with cinnamon-sugar. You savor them as-is or dip in the warm chocolate sauce. In any case, the churros were ‘mucho delicioso’!

What: French Toast with Peaches & fresh berries
Where: Exchange Street Bistro, Malden, MA
What could be more fantastic Sunday than having a warm French toast with fresh berries and peaches for brunch? And if you happen to get this comforting breakfast at a walking distance from your home then, I would say it’s your lucky day! Well, it was my lucky day for sure, one beautiful 'Boston-summer' Sunday! Exchange Street bistro was a classy restaurant in our neighborhood (in Boston)and though we never dined there, I will always remember the sophisticated brunch we had!

What: Koffee in Kulhad
Where: At a tea/coffee shop by the Lake Fateh Sagar, Udaipur, India
On our trip to Udaipur in Jan 2012, the ‘Koffee in Kulhad’ was an experience in itself! The coffee was no doubt delicious, warm, sweet and milky – just the way coffees are made in India. But the best part was the 'kulhad' (earthern coffee cup) which enhanced the coffee flavor like 100 times. With the backdrop of scenic Lake Fateh Sagar, in Udaipur, I would say it makes as a perfect spot for memorable ‘coffee conversations’!

What: Gourmet Bhel-puri
Where: Indique Heights, Chevy Chase, MD
Bhel-puri is rice puff snack that you get on the streets of Mumbai or any other city in India. It’s usually made fresh in front of you by ‘Bhaiyya’ (street vendor) and wrapped in a cone of newspaper ready for you to devour in as you sit by the 'Marine drive' or choose to eat it as you travel in the crowded local train compartments. So you can guess my surprise when bhel-puri was served to me in such a glossy way! Well nonetheless, I loved the presentation and the spicy-tangy taste wasn’t compromised at all. This was our bar-snack while we sipped on Indian-flavor infused drinks at 'Indique Heights'. ‘Indique Heights’ has a unique ambience and serves great quality Indian food. If you are in the Washington DC area, it is highly recommended for an Indian-dinner outing.

P.S.: I  have been thinking of changing the blog's look for some time now and finally on the notable date of 12/12/12, the blog went through a make-over!
I was aiming for a more 'neat-n-clean' look here; I hope I have done justice to that. I would absolutely love to know any feedback or suggestions from a reader's perspective. Do drop a comment below!

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Monday, December 10, 2012

Sparkle your way through the Holidays!

Happy Monday all (if there is a thing like a happy Monday!) This is an impromptu sequel-on-sequins (alliteration much?!). I did a post on the shimmer/glimmer/glitter trend last month; you can catch it here.
This post will be a quickie on simple and practical tips I employed to update my wardrobe for a glittery holiday look!

Quick tip: If you are thinking of adding any on-trend items to your wardrobe but are not sure about their everyday-wear-ability quotient then, check out sale racks for deals or look for cheaper options like drugstore brands. Another good idea is to wear the trendy print, color on accessories. That ways you don’t risk looking whacky and at the same time you have the freedom to tie the trendy item with your complete outfit/look.

So here goes my list...

I picked up this cute hairband on an awesome sale price of 10$ at J. Crew (couldn’t believe my luck at first; nothing is that cheap in J.Crew, you see!) I see it as sparkly fix especially for a bad-hair days (read too-lazy-to-wash-hair days)
Similar: J.Crew

Holiday glitter manicure! It’s a light-pink glitter nail polish but since its more on the translucent side, it works great as a finishing glittery coat on any nail color. I like a coat of glitter on all the nails but my favorite has to be - accent nail with glitter. Accent nail is a great idea especially if you think glitter on all the nails will be too much to handle!
I think it’s alluring when the glitter accent nail peeks from the black peep-toe pumps :)

Nail polish: Revlon Sparkling

Glitter on my eyes! It’s a smashing greyish-glittery color that is perfect for a shimmering smokey-eye look. For me, smokey-eyes and red lips is a smoldering hot look for holiday bash.  
Eye shadow: Revlon Diamond Lust
And finally, a sequin top. Though there were the usual metallic color options of gold, silver, grey, I went in for ‘Garnet’ – I think the sequins with garnet looks so luxurious and of course has the tones of a more Christmas-sey look! It will pair great black skirt/trousers for a more formal/office party look or with jet-black denims for a more casual party look.
Top: The Limited (I got it for 23.45$ during the Black-Friday sale)
Apart from these accessories, the sequin trend looks fab on belts, cardigans, shoes, bags/clutches.
Nothing like a lovely LBD (Little Black Dress) paired with black pumps, sequin belt and shimmering clutch. Picture-perfect party look! (I promise this is the last alliteration in my post today ;))

These were some of my quick and inexpensive updates to the wardrobe; did you get any sparkles for the holiday season? Do share any interesting holiday-party looks you are loving right now..

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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Crazy good date-night

This is what I wore on a date night, dinner and a movie! It was one of those rare days when everything goes as planned – house work, cleaning, relaxed afternoon, picture-perfect photo shoot and then a dinner n movie. check, check and check!

Date night started with a cozy dinner at - Karaikudi (in chantilly, VA) - a restaurant that serves authentic Chettinad cuisine. We started off with Rasam (perfect for a chilly night)and then moved to idli-wada sambar (my absolute favorite!) and finally finished off Chicken Chettinad with Chapatis/Rotis & Rice. 
The food itself was finger-licking good but super spicy & HOT! Don't get me wrong, I enjoy spicy food; but this was beyond my expectations (and in a real bad way!). The Rasam itself was tasty but again too way peppery for me (I left it half way while husband finished it off). The idli-wada were delish; sambar was served in meager quantities :( I mean charge me more but at least serve a cupful of that delish sambar! The Chicken Chettinad was as authentic as it could get - had a very home-madey taste to it! Awesome! Rotis were a let down (should have just stuck to parathas).
Though most of the patrons are from India, I am pretty sure that not everyone is aware of the fiery Chettinad cuisine. I wish the servers would have mentioned to me the level of spiciness and heat in the food. Well, having said all that, I think I won't mind going back there for the 'original' south-indian taste every dish had and probably will stick to idli-wada sambar/dosa. 

Well, though the dinner experience was a little setback for me (husband loves super-spicy food, so he had no complaints :)), the movie turned out to be SUPERB! We watched Argo that night. If you haven’t watched Argo yet, then go WATCH IT NOW!! Ben Affleck – the director and lead actor – is freaking 'brilliante'! 
I was spellbound after the movie; Argo is definitely one of the best movies in recent times. I don't want to reveal too much of the plot, but I loved watching the 1970's setting and was pretty excited when they showed Washington-Dulles airport in one of the shots. (I live quite close to the airport, you see ;))

It was quite chilly that day (which is how the weather is usually here now) so I picked my quirky skirt and paired it with a black turtle neck. Turtle necks I am not a big fan of! They make me a little bit uncomfortable around the neck area. But the fact that they are so warm and cozy, I do wear them on chilly days. Boots and leggings and a Crazy good necklace completed the look. So you see, I 'winterized' my 'summer' look here
I got this necklace from Tanvi’s very own boutique– Crazy & Co. Thanks to my stars, I won a giveaway for a gift card to Crazy & Co. on Vidhya's blog hereI was in love with this tribal-inspired design since I had seen the House of Harlow necklace. The best part is that it's black, which makes it totally versatile.

So on date-nights, do you try new restaurants or prefer the tried-and-tested ones? Do tell. 

What I am wearing: Skirt - Anthropologie (seen here); Turtle-neck sweater - Ann Taylor Factory Outlet; Boots - Born @ The Tannery, Boston; Statement necklace - Crazy & Co.; Earrings - Local boutique in Provincetown, Cape Cod, MA; Ring - Aldo; Belt - NY & Company; Purse - Linking Road, Mumbai, India; Glasses - Burberry; Jacket - H&M

The delicious Chettinad cuisine!
Idli-wada sambar on left and Chicken Chettinad on right.

I wore the statement necklace again on Monday with formal wear and 
it paired great, don't you think? :)

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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Blogger awards & Festive Look

Its raining awards, again! :) I am very much thankful for this appreciation from fellow bloggers and it is definitely rewarding!

So getting straight to the award formalities..yeah, blogger awards come with a list of to-do things :)

The lovely Pranitha nominated me for 'The Stylish Blogger' award.

Thank you so much Pranitha, getting called as Stylish is one hell of a compliment that every fashion blogger vies for ;) 
Visit Pranitha's food blog here for some interesting recipes.

My blog was nominated for 'The Lovely blog' award by the charming Priyanka. She's a traveler, dreamer and a fashionista like me..and from our email interactions I got to know that she's from my city – Mumbai! You can visit her blog here for interesting tid-bits on fashion, food, baking and travels. Plus, she has a lovey sketch in the blog header that I absolutely adore!

As part of  'The Lovely Blog' award, I am sharing 7 things about myself (apart from the things here and here)

1. I absolutely love to dance. J & I did once took salsa dancing classes before our trip to Puerto Rico, but Bollywood dancing remains to be my absolute favorite! 
2. I was not a brand -conscious person, but lately I think I have become; especially for brands that have great fit and colors and quality of course. 
3. I prefer travelling in public transport (local train/T train) to work rather than having to drive to work every day. I miss Mumbai local trains so very much (sometimes I see them in my dreams too :) guess, I spent too much time travelling in trains when I lived in Mumbai)
4. Bad music gives me headache.
5. I love travelling; travelling gets me out of the mundane life.
6. I don’t have a lot of patience. I can get fed up/frustrated if things are not working out as I wanted them to. But since I have started driving, this trait has slowly started to diminish (Husband, I leave up to you to validate that J)
7. I am big movie buff and a Bollywood junkie. I love watching classic movies, rom-coms and action movies. Horror movies I absolutely detest! 

For the Lovely Blog award, I nominate 10 fantastic blogs that I totally love!

Congratulations to all the bloggers!

And here are the rules for the nominated blogs:
1.            Thank the person who nominated you.
2.            Add the One Lovely Blog Award to your post.
3.            Share 7 things about yourself.
4.            Pass the award onto 15 nominees and let them know.

Well, getting to outfit-posting, this is what I wore for a Diwali party at a friend’s place. We had an awesome time playing dumb-charades, chit-chatting, giggling and of course hogging on delicious food and a yummy mango dessert. A sweet Diwali bash that was J

What I am wearing: Punjabi Suit - Haute Curry @ Shoppers Stop; Indian-clutch - Gift from aunt; Peacock-design earrings - Gift from mom; Sandals - Catwalk, India; 
Laakh bangles - picked on the trip to Rajasthan in Jan12; Ring - Pier1 Imports 
On my Nails - REVLON Raven Red 721 & REVLON sparkling 261
On my eyes: MAC Kajal; Loreal Masacara; MAC Cranberry Frost eye shadow
On my Lips: MAC Cremesheen Hang-up lipstick

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