Friday, August 27, 2010

sons & daughters in downtown san francisco


Confession: this trip to Sons & Daughters exactly a week ago actually pulled me out of an intense appetite-stealing depression resulting from a certain personal situation. After a shitty, shitty week, Friday finally rolled around and my friends Megan and Sam invited me out for dinner before the Nasty Gal x Lookbook party (which I probably usually would have skipped out on if it weren't for my coworkers, it's just not my thing). Maybe I was still feeling under the weather when I first sat down but as soon as that meal started, I totally forgot about what was bothering me and just let myself go. It's kind of scary to lose your appetite when you enjoy food as much as I do... I'm feeling much better now, thank you.

cucumber amuse bouche
bread + butter + hawaiian pink salt

The first thing that caught my attention and contributed to my abnormal burst of happiness at this restaurant? THE PLAYLIST. The Smiths, Bowie, Radiohead, Interpol, and even Arcade Fire... I could hardly sit still. The three of us went with the four course meal (sans the wine pairing, maybe next time) and while Megan and I chose all of our courses, Sam decided to let our waiter (who was really attentive and awesome about explaining everything) choose everything for him. Man, I wish all waiters were like him. Always spot on with his responses to our questions and never pushy, that's how everyone should be. First we had an amuse bouse with cucumber slices and little roe-like spheres of honey and bread with butter and hawaiian pink sea salt crystals while we waited for our first courses.

oxtail tartare
cream of beet soup
sweetbreads + dungeness crab

Next came my oxtail tartare with miso, juniper berry, chervil, and potato chips and Megan's cream of beet soup with creme fraiche. Our waiter chose the tartare for Sam and we were all quite pleased with our first courses. I remember trying my best to scoop up every last bit off of my plate... it was that good. The soup was also pretty decent from what I can recall but I definitely liked mine best. Megan and I chose the same second course, the sweetbreads and dungeness crab with pureed garbanzo beans, baby greens, and a light dijon foam. Sam ended up with the seared foie gras which came with a yogurt and concord grape granite. Terrific, terrific. My favorite part about that second course was definitely the crab since you could taste how fresh it was with just the right amount of seasoning.

squab breast + confit leg
lavender pork belly + pork tenderloin

And finally, the third course. This is where you can tell that I was starting to lose my light and I actually considered not posting these but it's so hard not to share them. Megan got the squab breast and confit leg with chickpeas, maitake mushrooms, and savory jus while Sam and I had the lavender pork belly and pork tenderloin with torpedo onions, an herb puree, and barley. Again, I am SO GLAD I chose what I got and I would definitely get it again. Okay, so maybe I just happen to be so in love with pork that I naturally gravitate towards it with every chance I get (Cochon 555 again next year, anyone?), but still, I've had some pretty mediocre pork tenderloin and this one was exceptional. I think the biggest problem I have with pork tenderloin is that I love it so much that I'm super picky about it and to me it's either not cooked right or overseasoned yet this one was just perfect. Even Megan who was satisfied with her own dish admitted that she wished she had chosen the pork.

(Not pictured is the fourth course, dessert, since I totally lost my lighting by then. In any case, we all had the vanilla panna cotta with blueberries and a lemon verbena gelee at the top which was fantastic, of course.)

For what you get, Sons & Daughters is totally underpriced since I'd usually expect to pay much more for the quality of food that I had there. At no point during the meal did I ever feel stuffy or uncomfortable, the entire time I was at ease talking to my friends and enjoying a spectacular meal. You know, even if you're not into the idea of spending so much money on pricey meals, even as a college student I try to set aside a bit of money so I can treat myself to a great meal every once in a while. Buying new clothes and other material possessions can be fun but to me, nothing compares to the simple inherent pleasure that you experience when that first bite hits your mouth and all of your senses start to work together to process the meal in front of you. It's amazing to see how much happiness can come from something as necessary as eating...

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

the hot tub's too hot

modcloth blushing ambition dress, vintage loafers + sunglasses

Classic example of always wanting what you can't have: a couple days ago I was complaining about how cold it's been all summer and today I am reduced to one big pile of sweat in 90+ degree weather. I finally got to wear my namesake dress from Modcloth with this change in weather but still, why couldn't it go from 60s to upper 70s instead of jumping 30 whole degrees in a few days? Yeah, yeah, it could be much worse but jeeeeez. I'm just not used to this. I can't even form full sentences.

Wore this out to get ice cream and shop around Hayes Valley for a little. Brent bought a pair of awesome woven YMC oxfords while I oogled these Rachel Comey booties at Gimme shoes. One positive thing about the heat? My inability to spend money and buy any new clothes or shoes when all I wanted to do at that moment was to take everything off and lay around in an air conditioned room. If this weather continues into the school year I am going to pull a tantrum à la Zack Galifinakis: "IT'S NOT FUN WHEN IT'S SO HOT!!"

ETA: I look way too happy in these photos. I think it was the 6:00pm breeze that was rolling in, holy shit that felt so good. I just can't function in the heat, that's why I live in the bay area after all...


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

a day with a chu

hope oversized cropped tee, old lux skirt, united bamboo booties, fjallraven kanken backpack

These aren't really the best photos of this outfit but they're the most decent ones in the bunch, even if they are horribly overexposed. Here we are walking home after a long day running errands downtown. This day was actually special for me since it is the second time in three months that we've been able to spend a whole day with each other (I always had work on his days off). The weather was actually decent, a little chilly at times, but still much warmer than most of the days we've had in the city.


I had to post these photos, they're too cute. I love this boy so, so, so much, even if he loves to wear ridiculous things (like these oversized leopard print sunglasses) to piss me off and is always teasing me about silly things. I wouldn't change a thing about him after nearly a year and six months and I'm super excited about finally getting to spend whole days together! I think our next adventure will be lunch at Wayfare Tavern to try Tyler Florence's attempt at making what he calls the best burger in San Francisco. Alright, TyFlo, I'll be the judge of that. Either way, I'm just happy that Brenty and I can finally go on cute little dates together, I really needed that.


Spicy turkey and three-cheese pressed sandwiches from Tartine. I missed this so much. I've mentioned this before but Tartine is only five blocks away from BF's apartment and back in the day we'd always walk there for morning pastries and coffee. I guess you don't really appreciate these little things and tiruals like these until you can't do them together anymore so this sandwich was especially delicious. I love sitting outside and watching people as they walk by, San Francisco is full of such interesting/weird/awesome characters. I can't wait to move to the city when I graduate.


Funny story: I was so annoyed with his leopard print sunglasses that I made him put on his roommate's Ray Bans for the photo. I guess it doesn't matter anymore since I posted the other photos anyway. Oh my silly Pikachu, I still love you even if you are a bit much sometimes.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

if you're thinking about getting a DSLR...

thrifted linen shirt, acne graphic tee, citizens of humanity jean leggings, forever 21 ring, united bamboo booties via creatures of comfort

I get a lot of questions about my camera so I thought I'd finally take some time talk about it here. I've been using my Nikon D5000 DLSR for the past 9 months and I wouldn't trade it in for anything else. It's easy to use even when I usually shoot with manual settings and even has a live-view option with an LCD screen which can flip around and let you see from different angles. Before this I had a point-and-shoot camera for everyday shots and a film SLR (Minolta SRT-201) for the occasional outing but I was always very hesitant about spending so much on a DSLR until my 21st birthday finally rolled around. Now I have my camera with me around 75% of the time and although it may seem big, it actually fits in most of my bags (although Luxirare's camera bag is pretty fucking fantastic, isn't it?)

As for the lens, for a month or so I was shopping around for the easiest lens I could possibly use and came across this 35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX one which is the most similar to the lens I was used to shooting with for my film SLR. I usually shoot with a high aperture since I prefer photos with a lot of light so I rarely take photos at night unless there's exceptionally good lighting. Overall, I'm satisfied with how clear my photos turn out and I'd definitely recommend both the camera and lens to anyone who is considering getting a DSLR.

I know I'm totally cheating with this type of outfit shot but sometimes you just can't find someone to take your photos. Thanks to everyone who commented on my hair, I'm still getting used to it but right now I'm actually really happy with the way it looks. I've also been wearing my new United Bamboo booties all weekend which make terrible days much more bearable even when you've lost your phone on BART and may have stepped in dog crap. Don't worry, it came off and someone was kind enough to pick it up and drop it off at a station. I'm so happy people like that still exist in this world.

ETA: I've also been getting a couple comments/emails about my Fjallraven bag... J.Crew stocks them in the children section! I'm not sure if they have them in stores since none of the stores around here carry the kids' collections but I just ordered another in black online. Also, check out my interview with Beso for winning their contest with Chictopia!

united bamboo booties

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

new hair and a trip to porto's bakery

new hairnew hair
la dama crystal bullet necklace, t by alexander wang striped top

Quick trip to LA, no time to do anything but see family, cut my hair (bleh), and attend the Real Madrid game which has been, by far, the highlight of my summer. I still can't believe I was right behind Iker Casillas, the best goalie in the world (even though my favorite Mexican player Chicharito scored against him today, har har har...) while also seeing so many of my favorite players in action. It was so surreal. Other than that, this weekend was uneventful. I usually make a point of swinging by Porto's on my way to my parent's from the Burbank Airport but this time I went right before my flight. I'd only been here for lunch once or twice (the rest of the time we just pick up pastries to go) but I had time to kill before my flight so hey, why not?

But before we get to the food, I'll state the obvious: YES, I cut my hair again. I'd been wanting to do it for a while (the last time I cut it this short was four years ago before college) and finally bit the bullet (lol necklace, get it). I really like it but my hair won't airdry well with this cut so I'm stuck styling it until it grows out a little. Oh well.

ham & cheese croissant
steak torta

Mom had the ham & cheese croissant, my brother had the steak torta, and I had the medianoche which contained layers of ham & pork between buttered buns (oh dear) with mustard and pickles. See those plantain chips? I could eat those all day, every day. Also worth mentioning is their horchata smoothie which includes a bit of caramel drizzled on the bottom... so decadent. I remember 7-11 tried to come out with frozen horchatas but they weren't this delicious. I must try making that one day. Brenty and I made homemade horchata once (which was quickly spiked with rum) and it came out quite well.

steak torta
horchata smoothie

Thursday, August 5, 2010

faux summer

parka from a korean boutique, rachel comey romper via aritzia, drugstore tights, hansel from basel socks, vintage oxfords

My hands still smell from all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ and I'm sitting at home trying to warm up after being in the freezing fog earlier this night. This is by far the worst Bay Area summer I've experienced and even with this new romper the only way to wear it today was with tights and this same ol' parka (for anyone who has asked me about it, I have no idea where to find one exactly like it since it was the only one when I went). Can you even tell it's strapless? What a waste. At the first sign of 80 degree weather I will be wearing nothing but this romper and a pair of sandals, hmph. It's still available online here but it's pretty pricey at the moment, maybe the discount will increase soon.

In response to a couple questions: the orange lipstick is MAC Morange, the Kanken backpack is the Classic Green one, and the song in my latest video is from the Link's Awakening soundtrack. I was waiting for someone to catch that last one, lol.

PSSSSSSSSSSSS: no eyes until I get my haircut in LA this weekend. I can't see anything.


Wednesday, August 4, 2010