Bon Jovi at The Joe

Bon Jovi at the Joe

Have you ever had one of those days where everything goes right?  From start to finish, top to bottom, it’s just a good day.  There are no traffic jams are bullies.  No spilled food or drink or broken glass.  No arguments or tears.  Just a great day.

Even better is when you are aware of its greatness as it’s happening.  It’s one of those times when you take literal and mental photos and cherish as many memories as you can because you know days like that are fleeting and few and far between.

I had one of those days a couple weeks ago at Joe Louis Arena when Mom and I went to see Bon Jovi.


There were some jitters since we hadn’t driven there in a long time and were trying to find the best route, but once we got ready, ate dinner, and even cleaned up without having to rush around, a calm washed over me.  I couldn’t remember feeling like that in a long time.

We hit the road on a chilly but rather nice late March day and found no traffic issues.  Seriously, you guys, none.  When was the last time you went to an event of any kind and did not encounter a line of traffic?  Um, never.  We breezed right into our parking lot and had a fair amount of time to kill before Bon Jovi would take the stage.

Joe Louis Arena

If you don’t live in the Detroit area, you have probably never heard of Joe Louis Arena.  It’s a pretty big deal around here.  The Red Wings play there and have won quite a few Stanley Cups, and this was the final year for them to play there.

It’s a bit sad, even if the Arena is rather run down, and has us all feeling rather nostalgic.  I fondly remember going to see hockey games in a suite many, many years ago.  After snapping some pics in front of the famous stairs outside, we headed inside and explored.

Bon Jovi at The Joe

The corridor leading to the floor has logos and Wings murals where we snapped a couple pics, and the Olympia Club was open to the public.  Because we had so much time, we took the elevator up to the main concourse (the Joe Louis workers were kind enough to let us skip the stairs that have no rail – scary!) and walked around the entire arena.

It was super fun to see The Joe one last time, even if it was packed and we even ran into Jay Towers.  I used to listen to him on the radio all the time and now I watch him on Fox 2 news every morning.  I’m still hoping he can get me on to make some recipes 🙂

Bon Jovi at the Joe

We made our way to our seats after the walk, very nice aisle seats on the main floor so we could see all of the action.  The show started before long and the whole Arena was jamming all night.

Bon Jovi played a lot of new songs, which I loved, as I have been listening to them a lot lately and really enjoy the new music, but he made sure to work in all those old hits.  He kept the talking to a minimum and just played great music, working from This House is Not for Sale to open the show to You Give Love a Bad Name, always a crowd favorite.

Bon Jovi at The Joe

When he worked Old Time Rock and Roll into I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead the whole crowd went wild.  It’s so fun when performers sing an old, well known song, that is special just for that crowd.  It’s My Life came shortly after.  That’s my favorite Bon Jovi song and one of my favorite songs of all time.  I think it was one of my first iTunes downloads all those years ago.  I sang and danced so hard I broke into a sweat!


Bon Jovi himself is very talented, singing, dancing, and playing guitar, but the rest of the band is awesome as well.  They all really add something to the performance, along with the light show.  The set is pretty bare bones and the only thing that draws your attention are the moving and color changing lights.  Some confetti would have been appreciated though 😉

Something I don’t think enough people realize is the wonderful positive message that permeates Bon Jovi’s music.  The songs talk about standing up for yourself and ignoring haters and being you.  It’s something we can all relate to, particularly me.  Those empowering words and beats are something I treasure.

Bon Jovi at The Joe

The only break the band took was before the encore and it was well worth the wait.  I barely saw anyone leave because we all knew some of the best songs were yet to come.  Raise Your Hands was followed by two all-time classics: Wanted Dead or Alive and Livin’ on a Prayer.  The whole crowd singing along was electric.  I wish I could have bottled that energy and saved it for another day.


When all the singing was done, as the crowd was leaving, Bon Jovi had one last surprise.  Understanding the history of The Joe, he pulled out a Red Wings jersey with his name on it and put it on.  It was really special to see that he took pride in performing there and this wasn’t just another tour stop.

After two and a half hours of music, I was beat.  My ears rang, my voice had disappeared, and my feet hurt.  I don’t know how Bon Jovi stayed so energetic for so long, because I wanted to immediately sit down and relax for a few moments.

It one of the best shows I’ve seen (only behind Katy Perry) and was one of the best days of my life.  I didn’t want it to end.  But it did, and though that makes me sad, we have the memories to keep us company.

Bon Jovi at The Joe

Detroit Basketball

Detroit Basketball

A few weeks ago, my parents and I went to our very first Pistons game.  We’ve been to lots of Lions and Red Wings games, and one Tigers game, but never ever a Pistons game.  It was time.

We love the Palace, having been there for many concerts.  While there is lots of fanfare around the Pistons moving to Little Caesars along with the Red Wings, I am really sorry to see the Palace go vacant.  It is a well maintained very nice destination for concerts and games that happens to be out of the congestion of Downtown Detroit.

The Palace of Auburn Hills

The Palace certainly knows how to make a basketball game fun too.  We actually began our evening in the Palace Grille, a fine dining type restaurant down on the lower level of the arena with really outstanding food.  We were glad to get a good meal before the game.

We might not be the biggest basketball fans, but I absolutely loved the game, and so did Mom.  I think Dad got a little bored, but oh well.

Detroit Basketball

Our seats were very close and let us see all the action and how small the court looked in person versus TV.  This Pistons might not be the best this season, but their opponents for the evening, the New York Knicks, are even worse and they pulled out the win.

After awhile, I’ll admit basketball is just the players kind of running up and down the court, but there is plenty of entertainment to keep things interesting.  The dancing usher, t-shirt sling shots, a race up and down the stairs, cheerleaders, a drum band, and a flag team are just some of the fun things they do during time outs and what not.

Detroit Basketball

Halftime was a Zumba performance which was super cool.  I am so amazed at how all those people coordinated their routine.  I always want to give Zumba a try, but I seriously lack coordination.

Detroit Basketball

One of the other super fun things they did were pizza parachute drops from the sky.  It was so funny to see the tiny pizza boxes with their tiny parachutes coming down from the rafters.

I am sorry I waited so long to check out a Pistons game in person, and equally as sorry to see the Palace go.  Sports in person are always a blast and the Palace is such a welcoming venue.  Hopefully we’ll have many more good times in Little Caesars Arena.

Pistons Mascot Hooper

Detroit Basketball

Taste of Troy

Taste of Troy

A couple weekends ago, we needed something to do.  Something fun and exciting and not just going to look at furniture and to the grocery store.  It was a sunny, but bitter cold day and we just wanted to do something fun.

I had mentioned Taste of Troy earlier in the week and the local meteorologist mentioned it the morning of, so on a whim we headed out to the San Marino Club in Troy for Taste of Troy, benefitting the Boys and Girls Club of Troy.

Taste of Troy

It was the twenty fifth anniversary of the event, so it’s kind of hard to believe we had never been before.  I shared my fashion last week, and now I want to talk more about the event itself.

Lots of restaurants in Troy had little booths with a dish or two from their menu.  From Greek to Italian, appetizers to desserts there was a little something for everyone.  As Mom and I were on the Whole30, options were limited for us, but the Tim Horton’s coffee definitely hit the spot.

Taste of Troy

Dad enjoyed checking out all the food, the Smashburger was among his favorites.  But the puffy taco from El Charro, the pizza from Shield’s, and gyro from Estia Greek Street Food were all hits too.

After checking out the food and silent auction, we just walked around for awhile, and it was good to be out and about.  We couldn’t leave without saying hi to our favorite local meteorologist, Andrew Humphrey.  He was even nicer in person than he seems on TV and asked me for a couple cards.  Who knows, maybe I’ll end up on Local 4.  That would be pretty awesome!

Taste of Troy

We also loved checking out the San Marino Club.  None of us had ever been there, and it is such a beautiful building.

I definitely think we will check out Taste of Troy again!

Taste of Troy

Taste of Troy

Hello … It’s Adele Live 2016

Hello - It's Adele Live 2016

Like many others I was impatiently waiting in the online Ticketmaster queue late last year for Adele tickets.  Like many others I didn’t get any.  Look, I’m typically a Ticketmaster fan (I’m a top 100 reviewer – all anonymous, of course), but they bungled that sale in the worst way.

Since that debacle, I had my eyes on StubHub (who I also love), and finally not too long before the show I found the seats of my dreams at a price that meant I didn’t have to sell too much of my soul to Mom 😉

I had high expectations about this show, and my expectations were exceeded.  Adele is one of the best concerts I’ve ever seen along with Katy Perry.  The show wasn’t about dancers and pyrotechnics and costume changes.  It was about Adele.  And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Mom and Me

Not too long after eight with the crowd growing a bit restless, Adele finally made her appearance, being wheeled to the B stage, right by our seats, in a truck.  It was showtime!

Adele opened with Hello.  I mean what else would she open with???  From there she walked to the A stage, gathering gifts from the crowd, and went right into Hometown Glory with first her hometown displayed on the screen behind her and then Detroit.

Adele Live 2016

From there, she interspersed her biggest hits with lots of talking.  Though this is quite unconventional, it was welcome.  I loved the personal feel it lent to the show and how her personality came through.  Adele is real.  She is authentic.  To see that first hand was delightful.  She even brought a couple of fans on stage with her.

As she sang, Adele waved to the crowd and pointed out signs.  We even sang Happy Birthday to one woman.  Can you imagine Adele singing Happy Birthday to you??? OMG!

We sang, we danced, we had fun, and stayed on our feet save for the acoustic set during which she sang Don’t You Remember and Make You Feel My Love, telling us to sit since she was.  I wasn’t sure what to expect from an Adele concert since most of her songs are rather depressing, something she joked about, but it was much more alive than I thought it would be.  A welcome surprise.

It was back to the B stage for Chasing Pavements, Someone Like You, and Set Fire to the Rain.  Once she was on the stage she waved the crowd close.  I stayed away from most of the fray but did move up and had an awesome view.  She noted she couldn’t step off the stage to take selfies, but she posed, bending over, moving around the stage so people could get selfies with her.

Adele Taking Selfies with the Crowd

Then she asked people where they were from.  New York.  Farmington Hills.  And Ohio.  When the lady said she was from Ohio, the entire stadium erupted into boos.  Michigan and Ohio have a mostly friendly rivalry, particularly in college sports.  Adele legitimately freaked out and had no idea what happened.  Then she realized “This is a sports thing, isn’t it?”

Her personality shone through when her dress got stuck on something on the stage.  She pulled a string off of it, announced her dress was trying to kill her, and shouted “Thanks, Burberry!”  It was hilarious, as I imagine Adele is much of the time, despite that her songs may lead us to believe otherwise. Adele Live 2016

She noticed another fan’s sign talking about their brother, a fan, who had died two months before.  Adele dedicated the show to him and later a song.  It was very moving.

As Adele sang Someone Like You, I had the best view of the night, and at one point I felt like she saw me as I saw her, like we made eye contact.  I’m probably wrong, but don’t try to convince me of such.  In that moment, I felt understood in a world that doesn’t understand me, in a world that doesn’t even want to.

Adele gets it.  She’s been wronged.  She has regrets.  I feel like she wrote Million Years Ago for me.  She swore and noted Send My Love (To Your New Lover) was for all of us who have ever had crummy people in our lives.  Adele gets me, even if she’ll never know that.

Set Fire to the Rain

Set Fire to the Rain presented the best special effects of the night with rain falling all around the stage.  I don’t know how they did that, but the effect was insane.

After a short wait, she returned to the A stage for the encores.  First When We Were Young, which was shockingly the only time throughout the night I cried.  It’s such a moving song and has so much meaning behind it that we can all relate to.

The night finished with Rolling in the Deep, an upbeat, fun song that had everyone up and dancing.  A shower of confetti blasted the audience as we all reached for some.  I gathered quite a few pieces to add to my collection, all of which have a song lyric or greeting from Adele printed on them.

Adele Live 2016

While my love of concerts in general has been reignited over the past couple of years, seeing Adele has left me fulfilled and sustained in a way I can’t explain.  I am thrilled to have seen her and been a part of such a magical moment.  Perhaps my joy has been magnified by the fact that throughout every single moment Adele was on the stage she seemed to be having just as good of a time as we were.

Summer Night #FashionFriday

Summer Night #FashionFriday

All summer long I wanted to do one thing, well a lot of things, but one thing in particular.  I wanted to go to Townhouse in Birmingham and eat outside.  But every time I wanted to do this throughout the summer months, it was sweltering out and I decided not to die of heat exhaustion just to fulfill my summer bucket list.

So on the last day of August, the weather was perfect, seriously perfect, and I went to get my hair done so it was looking good, and Mom and I headed to Townhouse.

Vietnamese Spring Rolls

Townhouse Salad

We sat outside and it wasn’t even buggy.  Our waitress, Lily, greeted us kindly and before long we ordered the Vietnamese Spring Rolls for an appetizer – the perfect light and refreshing start to the meal.  Then Mom had the classic Townhouse burger (I stole some of it too), which is a thick patty with caramelized onions, melted white cheddar, and a buttery brioche bun – aka the perfect burger.  I built my own salad with the red onion vinaigrette and devoured it, loving the freshness.

Townhouse Burger

Strawberry Shortcake Trifle

Plus, that let me save room for dessert.  I have been dying to try their Cake Cake Cake, a funfetti masterpiece that dare I say is at least as good as Momofuku’s, if not better, and something I want to eat all the time.  We also tried the strawberry shortcake trifle, and loved it with the jammy strawberries and whipped cream.

Summer Night #FashionFriday

For our fun night out, I chose a casual cool outfit pairing my classic Victoria Beckham lbd with a fun Chanel pearl belt and bright blue wavy heel Christian Louboutins.  I was super comfortable and felt like I was sitting somewhere in California, all my dreams having come true, just loving life.  And really, that night, and many, many others this summer, I did just love life.

Dress: Victoria Beckham // Belt: Chanel // Bag: Chanel // Shoes: Christian Louboutin // Sunglasses: Anna Karin Karlsson

Summer Night #FashionFriday

A Head Full of Dreams with Coldplay

A Head Full of Dreams with Coldplay

Coldplay’s music is some of the most heartfelt and meaningful that I listen to regularly.  I can, off the top of my head, pinpoint three uses of their songs in TV shows and movies that changed each of those pieces of work for the better.

There are not many bands who have created outstanding music for so long that has withstood the test of time.  And so when tickets for their current Head Full of Dreams Tour went on sale, I couldn’t resist, and I am so glad I didn’t.

On a beautiful August evening, my friend Kaitlyn and I headed out to the Palace of Auburn Hills.  Just as a quick side note here, the Palace has amazing security and personnel that keep us all safe and are ever present to ensure the crowd doesn’t get too rowdy.  Huge kudos to them for their great work!

We were running a bit late but got to hear a bit of Alessia Cara’s opening set as we found our floor seats.  As opposed to many concerts when I sit very close to the stage, these seats were the second to last row on the floor, but that provided for a great view of the stage and stadium and a different perspective than I am used to when watching concerts.

Coldplay in the Crowd


After quite a wait, Coldplay took the stage with “A Head Full of Dreams” and kept the hits coming fast and furious for about two hours without any real breaks, save for when they switched to a stage in the middle of the crowd.  That was a really cool move and Chris Martin walked right behind us on his way back to the stage!

Some of my favorite songs of theirs were also my favorites in person: “Yellow,” “The Scientist,” “Paradise,” “Charlie Brown,” “Fix You,” “Yellow,” and more.  The way the crowd sang along and sometimes took over with Chris Martin’s guidance, which was so moving and powerful.

The visuals were also outstanding.  The crowd was given wrist bands that lit up at certain times, though the workers at the Palace failed to give us any 🙁  The light show was killer with so many different colors.

And then there was the confetti.  Coldplay was seriously on their confetti game.  Like I have never seen anything like this confetti.  I believe there were four different instances it was blown into the crowd, and I saved a few handfuls as a memory.  The way the light reflected on the confetti was beautiful.  And there were mounds of it.  It filled Kaitlyn’s popcorn bucket and covered the seats and floor as the best snowfall ever.

The Lights!

The giant balloons, which people happily held onto and took home with them, were a fun touch, but honestly, they brought me right back to gym class and dodgeball.  Thankfully, the guy behind me kept swatting the balls away.


Really, though, it was two hours of a magical escape to a dreamland with lights and confetti and happiness and sometimes songs that make me cry in the best way.  Kaitlyn remarked that they sounded so much like the recorded music, but even better really.  They were real and fun and brought that vibe to all of us, if only for a few hours.

They said they would keep touring as long as we, the fans, wanted them to, and I can assure them, we still want them to.


The Future Now with Demi and Nick

The Future Now with Demi and Nick

I wasn’t a giant Jonas Brothers fan.  In fact, I don’t know if I can name a single Jonas Brothers song.  Not one.

But Nick Jonas has proven himself as a delightful performer and songwriter recently.  And Demi Lovato has always been one of my favorites because she is so real and honest.  And her songs are pretty catchy.

When I heard Demi and Nick were touring together, I knew I had to go for a fun summer night out.  Mom went with me, and while it wasn’t quite her scene, we both really appreciated the great songs of both performers and their clear talent on the stage.

Nick Jonas

The night began with Mike Posner, who is actually from Detroit so the stadium was packed for his opening set.  Mom and I caught the end after being stuck in traffic.  I heard his two most popular songs “Cooler than Me” and “I Took a Pill in Ibiza.”  He totally brought the house down and his band was stellar.  I was glad to see at least some of his set.

Before too long Nick took the stage.  He sang mostly his more recent songs, though they are really awesome with catchy beat and lyrics that still tell a story.  “Bacon,” “Chainsaw,” “Levels,” “Chains,” and “Jealous” were some of my favorites.  Mom and I were both unfamiliar with his song “Who I Am,” but as soon as he began singing it, we both fell in love with it.  You know a song is good when you have never heard it before

Nick Jonas

After Nick performed for a little more than half an hour, Demi took the stage.  She opened with “Confident,” which is one of my favorite songs.  It has such an empowering message.  As she worked her way through hits like “Neon Lights,” “Give Your Heart a Break,” and “Heart Attack,” the crowd sang along to every single word.  This crowd was clearly full of Nick and Demi fans.

Nick Jonas

A slower set from Demi ended with “Stone Cold” as Nick joined her on the piano.  This may have been one of my favorite moments from the show.  It was so beautiful and powerful.  Nick played a couple more songs before Demi joined him for “Closer,” and then sang a couple more songs herself, finishing out the night with “Cool for the Summer.”

Demi Lovato

The show was a bit bare bones with the only real set design pieces coming from flashy lighting.  And it was a huge disappointment to us that together Nick and Demi barely played an hour and a half.  Especially when two headliners are a part of a show, two hours is the bare minimum they should play.  I left wanting much more. 

I think opportunities to perform a cover or two or bring Mike Posner back out to perform with them in front of his home crowd were missed and would have made the show longer and more special.  Nick and Demi are both great performers and have a realness about them that shined through when they spoke to the crowd.  I loved and appreciated that, I just wanted a little more from them.

Mom and Me

Hour Best of Detroit Party 2016

Hour Best of Detroit Party

I’m trying to enjoy life as much as possible this summer and schedule as many plans as I can.  One such plan was heading to Hour’s Best of Detroit Party at Motor City Casino.  It was actually a last minute thing as we debated back and forth about going, but we are all so glad we went.

I even got a fourth ticket free so a friend got to tag along with Mom, Dad, and me.  The casino is always bustling, which is fun.  After valet parking we made our way to the Soundboard venue where we headed straight in to check out all the action.

Cafe Cortina

The crowds totally shocked us all – the place was packed and super loud with chatter, but that’s the kind of energy you want at an event like this.  We ran into a few friends at the event, so it was fun to chat for a few minutes.  Always nice to see a friendly face.  Then we checked out all the food stations from some of the area’s best restaurants.  Iridescence was a big hit, as was Slows BBQ.


I loved seeing the chefs in action, making the food at many stations.  Red Coat Tavern grilled burgers on the spot, Mon Jin Lau torched sushi, and Café Cortina sautéed ravioli to name a few.  I loved the freshly made smoothie from Beyond Juicery and Eatery with bananas, pineapple, and spinach.  The sticky toffee pudding from Whiskey Six was also to die for.

I was a bit disappointed that I couldn’t try most of the desserts because they could have been cross contaminated with chocolate.  Better safe than sorry, though.

Mon Jin Lau

A large bar in the center of the room provided craft cocktails.  They were excellent, though the bar was packed so it was hard to get a bartender’s attention.

After we made our way around the food areas, we headed into the main venue where a DJ was playing music.  The guys spied out Buddy’s Pizza and enjoyed that as Mom and I jammed to the music.  Before long the Killer Flamingoes took the stage.  They had a ton of energy and performed a lot of fun covers that we could all sing and dance along to.

Dessert Tower

I would have stayed and danced longer, but my company was worn out, so it was time to go 🙁  On the way out we just had to get a TapSnap photo taken.  I don’t know if you are familiar with these, but they are little booths at events that take photos.  The photos always turn out great and I am just in love with the concept.  At this event they actually made a GIF which is super cute.

Killer Flamingoes

The Best of Detroit party is something I have thought about attending for years, and we were all so glad we finally checked it out.  It was the perfect summer night on the town.

Hour Best of Detroit Party


Mabel Gray

Mabel Gray

Last week Mom and I had the opportunity to dine at Mabel Gray in Hazel Park.  It is a tiny restaurant and reservations are hard to come by.  In fact, we had our reservation for almost six weeks!  I could barely contain my excitement when the day came, and we were not disappointed.

Again, the restaurant is small.  We counted seating for about 30 along with a bar.  The kitchen is right there, which is awesome as you watch your food being prepared.

Our waitress, Janet, knew everything there was to know about the menu, and you could tell instantly she is passionate about the food and the restaurant.  Her enthusiasm made our experience that much better.

Fresh salad with mustard and olive oil

But let’s get to the food.  Well, first, my cocktail.  It was a tequila and mescal drink with fresh strawberry juice from local strawberries.  In fact the strawberries came from Spicer Orchards, a place my parents and I have visited several times.  The drink was perfectly refreshing for the hot day.

Then the food began to arrive.  We started with the salad full of fresh, local vegetables.  Mixed greens, peppers, radishes, beets, and even an edible flower composed the salad with a swipe of Dijon and some olive oil.  The flavors were so fresh and vibrant.  Somehow these restaurants are making me fall in love with beets.  Also, I need more edible flower in my life.

Cured salmon with buttermilk sauce on rye bread

A play on lox and a bagel was next with house cured wild king salmon (you know when I see wild salmon on a menu, I have to order it!), sesame seeds, a buttermilk sauce, and some fresh herbs.  The sauce was addictive, but the herbs were the surprise star.  The pop of almost spicy flavor they added was perfection.  Housemade rye bread came with the salmon.  That bread was amazing, but even better was the housemade butter.  I don’t even like butter and I could have eaten a tub of it.

Chili fries with duck egg

The lamb burger and chili fries were our shared entrees.  Let’s start with the fries.  While, a spice in the chili was bit overpowering for me, the fries were some of the best I have ever had.  They were perfectly cut and fried, tender on the inside, and really stood up to the chili.  I swiped the duck egg off the top and dipped my fries into it, ate it as is, and put it on my half of the burger.  Oh yeah, I went there.

Lamb burger with bread and butter pickles and garlic aioli

The burger, though cooked well done like we asked, was juicy and tender.  The house made sweet pickles, which I didn’t think I would enjoy, were excellent.  Seriously, I wanted a jar to go!  The garlic aioli really pulled the whole thing together.  My only complaint was that I needed an extra napkin.  Messy food!

For dessert, we had tres leches cake, which was good.  Very good in fact.  However, we both felt that the creativity didn’t stand up to the rest of the meal.  I could happily eat the salad, lox, fries, and bagel again and had to restrain myself from ordering more right then and there, but the cake lacked the pizzazz of the rest of the meal.

Tres leches cake

Since many of the dishes are plays off classics that the chef, James Rigato, who was in the kitchen that evening, has reinvented, it would be nice to see this continue to the dessert menu.  Perhaps cookies and milk, pie, a layer cake, or doughnuts would be fun and more appropriate desserts.

From start to finish, the meal and service were outstanding.  I am finding more and more as we explore new restaurants in the metro Detroit area that the quality of the food has improved so much it is hard to believe.  I’m excited to go back to Mabel Gray one day but also to explore other places.

Mom and Me

Forest Birmingham

Forest Birmingham

Memorial Day weekend was just beautiful and to celebrate we met some friends at Forest in Birmingham.  Previously known as the Forest Grill, Mom and I had been there several times until a not so great experience some years ago.  When the restaurant relaunched with a makeover and new owner last November, the reviews were amazing, so we knew we had to give it a second chance.

Spoiler alert: we are so glad we did.

Short Rib Cannelloni

Short Rib Cannelloni

The interior of the restaurant is just as beautiful as the day was outside.  It is so fresh, modern, and clean looking.  Our waitress Katrina, whom Mom and I had previously met at Townhouse, was super nice and knowledgeable about the menu.

I started the evening with a caipirinha, which I’d never had but would order again.  It was bright, refreshing, and balanced, not too tart or strong.

Then we ordered the cauliflower ravioli for a shared appetizer.  It was good but not my favorite part of the evening.  The rest of the table loved it, however.  Our friends tried the asparagus soup and house salad, while Mom got the carrot soup.  Simply prepared, it is just carrots, ginger, lemongrass, and vegetable stock.  I tasted it and then couldn’t stop.  Rest assured Mom got a couple tastes 😉

Filet Mignon

Filet Mignon

Then the entrees came.  They were all plated beautifully.  Our guests ordered the chicken and salmon.  Dad had the short rib cannelloni, Mom had the filet mignon, and I ordered duck breast for the first time.  I always wanted to try duck and am so glad I did.  The crispy skin was exquisite, as was the almond milk foam it was served with.

All the entrees were hits and the home fries we ordered to share were irresistible.  Super thick cut, they were insanely crispy on the outside but moist and tender inside.

Duck Breast

Duck Breast

Dessert rounded out the meal.  While the rest of the table enjoyed baked Alaska with chocolate cake and vanilla semifreddo, Mom and I shared the olive oil cake.  It was delightful with candied oranges and a streusel that I couldn’t get enough of.

I highly recommend Forest to anyone in the area.  It was a delightful meal from start to finish, and I already can’t wait to go back.

Olive Oil Cake

Olive Oil Cake

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