prince's plus.

back to nashville.
i don't know what to say about the hot chicken. but it was hot. and we ordered a whole hot chicken, a nashvillian specialty: medium hot, which is pretty damn hot. of course we went to prince's for this madness. you order, then you scour the place (the size of my apartment, which no one would call big) for a table covered by a plastic tablecloth, and then you wait. for us, it was an hour, and totally worth it (though this is the likely end of my attempts to consume animals on vacation).
 you eat it with white bread and pickles. not half-sours or anything special, just pickles.

so let's imagine how the recipe goes.
1. marinate chicken in oil with lots of cayenne.
2. make a dredge with lots of cayenne.
3. spread cayenne on the chicken?
4. deep-fry the chicken in oil with cayenne.

yeah. that kind of hot. and we did not order the hottest, as we wanted to be able to taste the chicken and just have our lips burn off.

we stopped into the patterson house later in the evening--lovely and beautiful and full of cocktails with spherical ice. i am not certain if this is shira's most favorite bar ever, or meat. it's really a toss-up.

our morning came with a crazy bloody mary bar, where i proceeded to put like 12 different hot sauces into my drink, along with a variety of pickled goodness.
 a lubricated morning for certain.
and is any trip to nashville complete without an overpriced yet super trip to the country music hall of fame? no. especially when it includes a poster-size photograph of dolly parton as the statue of liberty.
if we had more time, dollywood would have been on the itinerary. in my future indeed. 


is there a song about wisconsin? i don't mean about things within in it, like beer or cheese or badgers, but i mean like "oklahoma" or "texas, our texas." 

after a night of deep-dish pizza in chicago, shira and i left for milwaukee, where i was catching a plane to DC (i know, it was a crazy month). wisconsin was another new state for me, not that i have caught up to casey yet. we arrived at the mars cheese castle, which was indeed a castle but not regal. 
yes, at 1130am, we consumed a couple of bottles of new glarus and a pile of cheese curds in a parking lot. a perfect conclusion.

in transit.

so, she left. well, i rode with her across the country to her new place of employment: chicago. there are a lot of places from here to there: north carolina, virginia, west virginia, kentucky, indiana, and illinois. we made a little vacation out of it, stopping in louisville. it was at an incredible bar called meat in a neighborhood called butchertown where we drank bourbon cocktails and decided that we should write travel books on cities in the south.

but, alas, we only stayed for the night, leaving for glorious (not really) state of indiana. i had never been and was able to add the thirty-seventh state to my list. we stopped through indianapolis, eating bagels on a corner not far from the state fairgrounds but across the street from a record shop.

we also saw the biggest wind farm i have ever seen in my life. and the iphones just could not capture the vastness of the place. 
more importantly, we came upon the albanese candy company: home of the world's best gummi bears. so, of course, we pulled over our dodge grand caravan (which was awesome, for the record) and drove 3 miles down a surprisingly-busy road to the kingdom that this is candy company. we left with about $3 worth of candy, all gummies: 12 flavors. indeed, world's best. at least for gummies.

no. 308.

nashville, tennessee: a lovely place that requires two posts. shira, alex, and i spent what seemed like an entire day at no. 308.  we went for a happy hour cocktail and stayed for hours.
yes, it was full of taxidermy. ridiculous, non-nonsensical taxidermy. but also delicious cocktails with housemade syrups and shots that involved pineapple slices and gifted salads and other snacks. we eventually ran off at 10 or 11pm or so, only so we could head to another place for some bluegrass/country/picking of sorts.

these girls. i love these girls. and we all love dolly parton, but that's for another post.


taco extravaganza.

a bit of late july taco madness.

casey and shira and i were on a mini-quest to eat up the goodness that are the tacos in durham. (what is in the water over there? everything is just better, you know?) visits to nantaco and la vaquita were in order. spicy awesome tacos consumed. for the vegetarians, nanataco has more options, including a surprising fried green tomato taco (and all the salsa options above)! but seriously, la vacquita, you have my heart.

i don't know how to tell you this,

but this might be the best breakfast i have had in years. this was last week sometime.

the egg was perfectly fried (in butter), the tomatoes were just beyond amazing (i don't know what farm grew them, but an award is warranted), and the crackers were full of seedy amazement (sunflower, sesame, poppy, maybe flax). also, cucumbers and hummus and it was just all the loveliest.


there's a jar of plum syrup on my counter. and a chocolate babka. it's beyond exciting.

this week, i am the lucky winner from berenbaum's. each week, they send out a little tweet telling the world what is on the menu for saturday and suggest that we "like" the post. then, they choose a random person to go home with some deliciously awesome or awesomely delicious baked goods, and this week, i was chosen. i took my bike on the bus and then rode to the durham market for shopping and prize-getting and coffee-drinking. (don't tell the carrboro market, but i am pretty sure durham is my favorite.) and once i told ari (berenbaum) how i got to the market without a car, he gave me a samosa as well.

essentially, it all rocks.


and then it happened.

vogue covers ice pops (not popsicles, because that's a brand). with recipes. delicious-sounding ones. so it's fashionable to eat them now. (we knew this--i told blake to open a popsicle truck like 3 years ago already and that kid tried to claim that he does not LOVE A POPSICLE.)

my inability to find photographs of pops means it might be time to make a batch.


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