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A date with the hubs

It’s been a good day. I mostly sat around the house, wrapped some presents, did some cleaning, nothing special.

I’ll be really honest, this breakfast was not from this morning. Today I had pancakes, but we all know how photogenic those turn out so here’s a picture of a bowl of yogurt with granola, pecans, buckwheat, pumpkin butter, and apple butter instead…

As long as we’re being honest, this salad was also from yesterday’s lunch…

Aren’t those bean sprouts the wackiest things ever?!? They look like little alien hatchlings stretching squiggly tentacles out of their newly-cracked shells. Ok, that was gross, I don’t want to imagine that the next time I’m eating them. Too late I guess.

On to stuff that actually happened today!

We hit up Java Monkey in downtown Decatur for a coffee date. Here’s my swirly soy latte which was so creamy and delicious!

And Jeff is giving me that snide glare that says “Are you taking a picture of me?”

No honey, never.

After that we revisited Ma Li for a tasty thai dinner. We started with a refreshingly springy seaweed salad dressed in toasted sesame oil.

And had an obligatory sushi appetizer of an Amsterdam Roll and two pieces of inari. Mmmm….fried bean curd and teeny fish eggs, two of my loves.

I got spicy basil tofu which was delicious but face-meltingly spicy.

And Jeff got his favorite red curry duck.

We had a fabulous date together, I always love going to Ma Li.

Now we’re gonna finish the night by cracking open a few beers we picked up at Ale Yeah! and watching some Neflix streaming under a fuzzy blanket.

Ahhh…I’m all warm and toasty just thinking about it!


Ege and Intermezzo


I wondered the other night exactly how many days it would take of eating sushi every night before I got tired of it. I’d guess it’s well over a month, possibly longer. I’ll have to try that experiment sometime. :)

Saturday night we went out for sushi with a group of friends to a restaurant called Ege. It’s always a good sign to walk into a sushi joint and hear “Irasshaimase!” being called out to you as a welcome.

Check out the cute handwritten specials menu with all the adorable sea creatures on it!

I especially like the little octopus at the bottom with another octopus on his head. I think it is a zombie eating his brains!

We ordered A LOT of food, starting with some edamame…

…teriyaki salmon…

…and beef tataki that I couldn’t snap a picture of before it was devoured!

Then came the sushi. Here’s what was shared between the 6 of us…

Rainbow roll, spicy tuna roll, tuna and avocado roll

Sashimi plate

Bamboo roll and yellowtail nigiri

At that point I loaded up my first sample plate, knowing there would be lots more coming and we needed to clear these out!

Turns out I wasn’t the only one snapping photos that night. Emily has a pretty new toy she was testing out…

On to even more sushi…

Tuna roll, uni, ikura, unagi, tuna avocado roll

unagi and yellowtail

Apparently I didn’t get a picture of the last plate, which was tamago (egg omelet) and anago (sea eel). Here’s my second helping…

That buttery soft anago is one of my all-time favorites! I had more than what you see here too.

So after all that sushi and 4 caraffes of hot sake, we wanted dessert! Off to Cafe Intermezzo for a slice (or 6!) of the best cakes around and some yummy cocktails.

It was dark, but I got the best photos I could. This picture came out crazy with the ghostly figure in the background. That’s John, Emily, Marshall, and Kelly; Jeff is to my left but he got cut off.

We started with a round of drinks. I got a Manhattan Deluxe…

Intermezzo has an enormous menu, but everyone seemed to stick to the classics…white russians, mojitos, old fashioneds.

After drinks were on the table, it was time to go pick out cakes…

Entire case of cheesecakes

And another case of cakes

I got a huge profiterole type thing. It was filled with Nutella whipped cream and topped with chocolate!

I laughed at Jeff for getting plain cheesecake with so many interesting choices available, but it was so good that I ended up eating more of it than he did!  Wise man, my husband.

Here’s a pic of Johns’ 7 Layer Amaretto, another one of my favorites…

I actually used to work at Cafe Intermezzo back when I was 19, so I get warm fuzzy feelings every time I go in there. Also, I know which cakes are the best, as I’ve tried every single one of them. :)

Another great night out. Can’t argue with sushi, booze, and cake!


Abattoir for Jeff’s birthday

Wanna know a secret???  Jeff is younger than me! 😀  We’re about 9 months apart, so in the winter we get just under 3 months of being the same age. I honestly never even think about it until this time of year rolls around.

For his birthday, we decided to just hit up somewhere really nice for dinner and grab cocktails somewhere after. Here’s how it all went down…

Abattoir (French for slaughterhouse) is a restaurant we’ve been meaning to visit for a long time and have just been waiting for the right occasion. Jeff and I are both interested in offal, the innards and other animal parts that are normally wasted in pursuit of the more standard cuts, and Abattoir happens to specialize in just that.

The dining room had a real rustic farmhouse type feel and was very casual and welcoming.

Jeff was super-excited to try everything on the menu!

Of course we started the evening by ordering a few adult beverages.  Jeff had a vieux carre cocktail and I opted to try a gluten-free beer called Estrella Duara, just out of curiosity.

I was really impressed that when we were brought a loaf of bread for the table, the woman bringing it (who I believe was a manager) asked us if we were able to have bread since she noticed I ordered the gluten-free beer. I thought that was really helpful and attentive to the dietary needs of customers, very nice.

We decided to try to order tapas style since there were so many dishes we wanted to try. We were particularly intrigued by the “food in a jar” section of the menu.

We settled on the duck rillettes, which is essentially a duck pate in a jar that is sealed with fat to preserve it. We spread it on crispy pieces of toast and it was sooooo good.

Next were the barbequed sweetbreads with a brussels sprout slaw.  Holy crap these were insane!

Jeff has tried sweetbreads once before on a business trip where he got to go to a famous molecular gastronomy restaurant. It was my first time trying them though so I didn’t know what to expect. I thought they would be kind of squeaky and fatty, but they were just soft and pleasant and the salty and tangy sauce was perfect on them.

After that we ordered an apple salad and a steak tartare. The salad was easily one of the best I’ve ever had with both roasted and dried apples and an acidic vinaigrette.

The steak tartare was so soft and so oniony!  You know how much I love onions, so this was just too perfect for me.

Jeff was losing his mind over it, he talked about this tartare for days afterward!

We wanted one more item so we got the pork fritters with pepper relish served over collards.

These were heavy but still delicious. We were both stuffed but had to order dessert. We got the maple panna cotta with caramelized bacon cookies.

Oh WOW.  One of the best desserts I’ve ever eaten! I was so full but just couldn’t keep my spoon out of it.

We had to give up with the finish line in sight, too full!

The sight of these little gems that came with the check was still welcome even after failing to finish our dessert.

Somehow we found room for them.  :)

Abattoir was super-awesome, it’s not every day we go to a restaurant where every single item we order is so astoundingly good. The staff is really friendly and helpful and the atmosphere is very relaxed for such fine dining.  We’ll be back!

We left from there and drove back to Decatur to meet some friends for drinks at Leon’s. John and Emily were waiting for us, it took them over an hour to get a table! Poor guys.

See! I took pictures of people this time! My friends do exist!

Sorry I snapped it when your eyes were closed, Em!

I love Leon’s. They always have the coolest seasonal cocktails to choose from. I started with Death & Company and switched to a Witch Hunt afterwards because John recommended it. Both were really good.

We hung around for about 2 hours and laughed and drank too much. It was a great time and Jeff said he had a wonderful birthday.

I love a good excuse to laugh it up and stay out too late, don’t you?