Month: July 2013

Biscuit Bitch in Seattle

Biscuit Bitch is harder to find than you’d expect. Instead of the name being proclaimed loudly on an awning or storefront, it’s quietly presented as a small sticker on the front window. Maybe there are laws about that sort of thing. (If you are looking out for the name, look for Caffe Lieto)

One thing is for sure- Biscuit Bitch has quite the name. This Biscuit-ful cafe offers up a slew of not exactly family friendly named dishes. The cafe is Southern inspired and is located near Pike Place Market.

Hungry? Fill up with a  Gritty Cheesy Scrambled Bitch. (Biscuit and Gravy smothered in Cheese, Scrambled Eggs & Garlic Grits) Want something a little smaller? Nosh on a Straight Up Bitch (just a biscuit and sausage gravy). If grits and gravy isn’t your thing, you are welcome to have a Canadian Bitch (Biscuit, Maple Peanut Butter, Bacon) or a Bitch-wich.

Portion sizes are huge and reasonable priced at around $6-$9 a loaded biscuit.

 

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I stuck with the pretty simple, “Bitch Diner Breakfast”, ($7.20)  because I’m not a fan of grits/gravy. This breakfast comes with 2 Eggs, a sausage patty, a Big Ass Biscuit, Butter and Jam for $7.20. Now, the biscuit was fluffy and delicious, but I wish that I had gotten a heftier breakfast like the combination biscuits! No matter, next time I visit Seattle, I’ll fix that.

Along with my breakfast, I indulged in a Seattle Fog (a variation of a London Fog, and my current tea obsession).

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Cheesy Pork n’ Bitch ( Biscuit and Gravy with Cheddar and Crispy Crumbled Bacon)

The boys had no qualms with grits or gravy, and devoured two delicious lookin’ Bitches. Yum.

Biscuit Bitch can be found at Caffé Lieto 1909 1st Ave, Seattle, WA 98101

To read more about my adventures in Seattle, click here.

 

Hotel Vintage Park Seattle

The Hotel Vintage Park in downtown Seattle is on the list of Best 500 Hotels Around the World, and I can see why. This boutique hotel is a good location for a romantic getaway, or for a serious wine lover. As usual, this Kimpton owned property had charming, knowledgeable staff,  ready to give you recommendations and help with your bags.

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Each hotel room is named after a Washington winery. (Mine was named after the McCrea Cellars!)

 

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When we checked in, we were pleasantly surprised to be greeted with a flight of red wine. Yum! Perfect for unwinding after packing.

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The room was very warm and plush, done up in dark reds and oranges. I liked the wall hanging at the head of the bed! Of course, the bed was incredibly comfortable and the room was spotless.

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The bathroom featured Gilchrist & Soames toiletries in handy pumps in the shower. I love how they had a small glass jar filled with things that I usually forget. (Q-tips & cotton balls)

Amazing Kimpton Perks!

– Free bicycle rentals for guests (and the bikes have been specially designed for Kimpton)

Free coffee and tea in the lobby in the morning. Free iced tea and water in the evening!

Free WiFi and snacks if you join their free rewards program Kimpton InTouch

Raid the Mini Bar: Kimpton InTouch members get to sneak  treats for up to $10! It’s such a great idea, and something that I haven’t seen any other hotel do before. The mini bar is particularly awesome– filled with local, gourmet and handy items (like a razor or a mini first aid kit)

And my favourite perk at this hotel….

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Hosted Wine Hour! Almost all Kimpton Hotels have hosted wine hour between 5pm – 6pm. We enjoyed refreshing Mimosas and white wine at the in the beautiful wood paneled Vintage Park lobby. The drinks were served with smoked salmon appetizers, yum!

The hotel is near many shops, restaurants and you can walk to Pike Place Market. If you are looking for an upscale, romantic hotel to stay at during your visit to Seattle (especially if you are a wine lover), then be sure to stay at the Vintage Park Hotel!

The Vintage Park is located on 1100 Fifth Avenue Seattle, WA 98101 .

Ivar’s Fish Bar at Pier 54 (and giant Seagulls)

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Walking along the beautiful Seattle waterfront, you might see some curious signs.

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After taking in the sign, you’ll look around, and see some of the biggest seagulls that you’ve ever seen. Seriously. These guys are huge. And incredibly healthy.

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After taking a stroll and checking out all of the restaurant, we decided to eat at Ivar’s Fish Bar (the home of this sign). It had a huge line, and the food looked good. Although Ivar’s had a sit down restaurant, we decided to grab our food and eat it outside on the patio. This way we got to watch the seagull show! More on that later.

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Ivar’s is pretty famous for their clam chowder in a sourdough bread bowl ($7.49). The portion sizes were huge! I didn’t eat this, but my friends did. Because we also ordered fish and chips, they both couldn’t finish their bowls! They both said that it was the best clam chowder they’ve had.

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Salmon and Chips
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Jumbo Prawns and Chips

I devoured Jumbo Prawns ($9.49)  and breaded Salmon ($8.59) Everything was delicious and super fresh. A particular favourite was the Cajun halibut. Yum! Check out the menu to see what else they offer.

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As a bonus, while we were eating, we saw many people feeding the (terrifying) seagulls and having a pretty good time with it. One man put french fries in his mouth and the seagull ate it from his mouth. Ahh! A small two year old girl fed the seagulls, but it was scary to watch because it was half her body size.

All in all, it was a pretty enjoyable way to take in the waterfront and have some fresh seafood!

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Ivar’s Fish Bar is at Pier 54 Fish Bar on Seattle’s Waterfront. Seattle, WA 98104-1028

Summer perfumes from Elizabeth Arden

 

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On a warm summer day, I was invited to a perfume event by Elizabeth Arden at the lovely Royal Conservatory of Music. The event gave everyone a chance to experience new perfumes of the summer!

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Hands down, my favourite perfume was the sensual Viva La Juicy Noir. Noir is a limited time edition, and it’s a little darker than Viva La Juicy. The notes of this perfume were broken down for us to experience.

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The perfume contains some of my favourite scents. The top notes contain fresh wild berries, mandarin and mara strawberry. The lasting base notes consist of amber, caramel, vanilla and sandalwood. This scent is perfect for a summer date, don’t you think?

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The real star of the show was Untold, the first perfume to be launched by Elizabeth Arden in over two decades. Elizabeth Arden brought the perfume creator all the way from France to discuss the perfume with us. He shared how he wanted to layer the many sides of a woman in one perfume. Mysterious, feminine and sensuality were key when creating this scent.

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Untold is a floral, musky scent with unique fruity notes such as pink pepper and bergamont. The multi faceted bottle is truly unique and looks beautiful in the sunlight. You’ll be able to find this fragrance in stores starting in August.

The Elan Hotel in L.A.

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The Élan Hotel is a fantastic boutique hotel in West Hollywood. (Nicknamed, WeHo, much to my delight.) Not only are the rooms incredibly comfortable, and with ample plugs for your electronics, but it also comes with free continental breakfast and is in a great location for shopping and dining.

elan3 Android Photos 20131 The room was very clean and a good size. The bathroom had a nice selection of toiletries and the soap was really interesting. Because the middle of the soap is the most wasted part, the Elan removes the middle.

The hotel participates in a great program called Clean the World. The program takes partially used lotions, shampoos, etc that are left in hotel rooms and reuses them. The reused products get donated to shelters and people in need. Pretty cool.

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In the morning, head down to the bright lobby to enjoy your complimentary continental breakfast. The meal includes pastries, coffee, various teas, yogurt, cereal and more.

After breakfast, go shopping!

In West Hollywood, you are close to some cool shops. Notably, Flight 001, What Katie Did and Tokidoki. If shopping malls are more your thing, then you’ll be pleased to discover that shopping center The Grove is down the street, (shopping, movie theatre and restaurants. Sprinkles, anyone?) and mega mall Beverly Center is a mere 5 minute walk away.

The Elan Hotel is actually quite tiny (only 2 floors) so it’s amazing to see the attentiveness and comfort of a larger hotel. No wonder they are #5 on TripAdvisor with a 91% rating!

Take a look! Élan Hotel 8435 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, California 90048

David’s Tea Summer Collection

I love to drink tea. It’s my beverage of choice. However…something about summer has me drinking my tea reluctantly.

Waking up in the morning to humid temperatures, and then drinking a piping hot drink suddenly loses its appeal.

Luckily, I received a mystery package that was full of the new limited edition David’s Summer Iced Tea collection.

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The Summer Collection packs five deliciously fruity teas into one box. I tried Mango Fruit Punch, Tropicalia and Pink Passionfruit,  Mint Julep and Coconut Grove.

To make these refreshing teas, steep as usual with hot water for 7 to 8 minutes. To cool it down, you can pop it in the fridge, or add ice cubes.

These iced teas are easy to prepare in advance for patio parties or entertaining. You can add fun elements like mint leaves or agave to sweeten it up.

My favourite tea was Mango Fruit Punch.  The major flavour here is pineapple and mango, tempered with slices of oranges and tangerines and strawberries. Yum!

 

The Summer Collection is available at all David’s Tea locations for a limited time…and is a great way to squeeze the most out of summer!

 

EMP Museum in Seattle

I wasn’t too sure what to expect from the EMP Museum – Music + Sci-fi + Pop Culture in Seattle. When I saw that they had a Fantasy exhibit, I knew that I had to go.

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The Fantasy: Worlds of Myth and Magic exhibit: Revel in hands-on installations that include world building and mapmaking, and legendary pop culture artifacts. See iconic costumes from TV and the silver screen including The Wizard of Oz, Xena: Warrior Princess, Labyrinth, and The Princess Bride; pet a dragon designed by Seattle Opera; sit atop the Iron Throne from HBO’s Game of Thrones; and view original hand-edited manuscript pages from J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

I loved seeing the manuscript pages from Lord of the Rings (you aren’t allowed to take pictures!) and the Game of Thrones chair. (I missed it when it came to Toronto.) Ironically, I ended up enjoying the museum itself more than that exhibit.

The EMP is designed by Frank Gehry and is 140,000 square feet! They have a giant sculpture of guitars that stretches way up to the ceiling. It’s called IF VI WAS IX, and it’s made up of more than 500 musical instruments and 30 computers.

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I also immensely enjoyed the beautiful Sky Church, which was inspired by Jimmi Hendrix. This space is used for showing films and performances. When we were there, it was showing the 9th annual Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival. I watched a cool short film called Doll Factory.

Trailer FÁBRICA DE MUÑECAS (DOLLS FACTORY) from Ainhoa Menéndez on Vimeo.

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On the second floor, they have a huge  Sound Lab. At the Sound Lab, you can play the drums, mix tracks, experiment with sound or even record your own demo CD in a soundproof room.

There’s no shortage of things available to do at the EMP. If you love Jimmi Hendrix or Nirvana (both Seattle natives), you can visit exhibitions featuring memorabilia, hand painted guitars and outfits that they wore.

The Women Who Rock exhibition gives you a chance to get up close and personal with outfits worn by incredible women in Rock n’ Roll. See the famous Lady GaGa Meat Dress and outfits worn by Madonna! (The Alexis Hotel also has a cool hotel package available with this)

Women Who Rock: Vision, Passion, Power shines a spotlight on the astounding women who propelled rock ‘n’ roll into uncharted territories. Key artifacts, videos, exclusive interviews, and listening stations underscore the defining role that women have played in popular music, from the foremothers at the roots of rock, to Grace Slick, Madonna, and musicians of the new millennium.

 

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The EMP is a must-see when visiting Seattle. Tickets are $15 online for adults. Visit http://www.empmuseum.org/ The EMP Museum is at 325 5th Avenue N at Seattle Center.

To read more about my adventures in Seattle, click here.

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