Thursday, July 14, 2011

Amanda does Dallas.. and Napa

As you might have picked up through twitter I travel quite a bit, not as much as I used to but still enough to be classified as a lot. So, when I found out there was a new airline that has direct flights from SFO to a few cities that I fly to I was very excited (obviously it doesn't take much to excite me). I am here to announce (not being paid) that Virgin America lives up to all the hype. Not only was the leg room/reclining ratio amazing the food was delicious. That hasn't been the case since I was about nine and ate, at the time, what I thought was the best sandwich I would ever have on Continental Airlines. (not the case anymore, Continental)
Brandon and I decided years ago that Virgin Atlantic was our primary airline to fly over seas and I am thrilled to say Virgin America is my domestic carrier of choice now too (please open more flights.. Please)

Now I will stop with all the airline pimping and get back to blogging..

Since I was in Dallas for a week I didn't do much cooking, and since I have issues with being that person taking pictures of every meal before I eat it, I don't have many food pictures.. But we will make it work.

Dallas is always a really fun time. All of our friends and all of our wine are there, so how could it not be fun? Especially, when you walk into your wine cellar and this is waiting:
That is our favorite bottle of wine.. We (well, probably just me) could drink it everyday! 

Every night in Dallas was really low key, even the night of Brandon's birthday was tame. We had just a few drinks with friends at one of our favorite spots, Black Friar. (Dallas people have the short rib nachos.. you are welcome!)
Thankfully the all star break was coming up so we were able to stay a day longer and meet some friends for a fun dinner.. And I was able to break out my newest obsession (again not getting paid) my Abi Ferrin dress. For those who haven't heard of Abi Ferrin let me tell you about her. (If any gentlemen are reading I recommend just scrolling down to the next paragraph) She is a local designer in Dallas who makes really bright,fun dresses and tops. She is also apart of the Freedom Project meaning many of her collections are made by women rescued from the sex trade in Nepal and Cambodia. These organizations counsel, train and shelter the women while also providing income. So not only are her clothes great she is helping so many women here in the states..
The dress I have can be worn at least 5 different ways, due to my horrific sunburn I am wearing it as a top with jeans. Just look how cute this is: (this isn't the only time it's being showcased in this blog) 
I really recommend this dress for everyone. This print is a little bold, but she has some solid ones too. Not only are they light and comfortable they also travel very well. It was in a suitcase for 10 days and it didn't have one wrinkle.. that's my kinda dress!
For more info go to her site:

On to all star break!

When we have a few days free the only place we want to go is Napa.. Oh Napa!
We love the weather, the small town feel, amazing views, and not to mention the awesome restaurants and WINE :) 

We were fortunate enough to get a reservation at The French Laundry on Tuesday night. We were all very excited, and looking forward to it all weekend. The French Laundry has such a prestigious reputation that when we sat down we all started to question us being there. Looking around at the tables we realized that we were going to be the youngest and most likely the loudest ones there.. so we sat really quiet for about 10 mins until the first drinks came out. Then said screw it, we are paying just like everyone else and we want our experience to be enjoyable. So, we loosened up and had an amazing night. Here we are with two of our friends from Dallas:
This wine was out of this world.. and I am eating Liberty Farm Pekin Duck. We had about 12 courses that night! 

 Thomas Keller came to the table in the middle of dinner to have a little chat and invite us down to the kitchen when we were done with dinner.. little background, Thomas Keller and his wife were sitting in the courtyard where we were wine tasting earlier that afternoon. Hobbes and I walked out of the tasting room next to him and started up a conversation. I am not afraid to just walk up to people and chat with them. So when he came to the table he remembered that I was the girl with the dog, and like a little girl I just giggled and bobbed my head around.. I had no words.. he probably thinks I am a fool! 
Here is a peek into his magnificent kitchen (I took the pictures in a really non obvious way because I was trying to act cool so they aren't great!)

In the kitchen, quick note about this photo.. my eyes were totally shut and I sent it to my father in law and he had a friend put eyes on me.. I am shocked that people can photoshop so well.. Thank you Pat!

Live feed of his other restaurant.
Kitchen hard at work


I have the biggest sweet tooth, and this dessert came out looking so pretty that I had to take a quick picture. This is the Lemongrass dessert.. the menu has a French description, and I don't know French, so I am just calling it the Lemongrass dessert. Then they sent out these little homemade chocolate that are infused with different flavors, the tables favorites were the Peanut butter and jelly on the bottom right and the Hazelnut on the top left. 
All in all the trip was a lot of fun, I could have stayed up a few more days.. but Brandon had to go back to work on Wednesday so that wasn't possible. So it was a one night All-Star break:
After 12 courses and a lot of wine we were able to walk out just fine.. see, we can go to classy places, DAD!

Abi Ferrin dress worn as a dress.. Still covering my burnt shoulders. And the standard leg kick.. 

1 comment:

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