barcelona wine bar

I'd been hearing a lot of hype about Barcelona Wine Bar on 14th St., NW. Comments like "it's the new place to be seen on 14th St."  It felt like a "night club" (?!).  Of course I was dying of curiosity because you know I like all things tapas + new + cool.   On Wednesday, my husband and I ventured over and had an excellent meal on the patio.  The entire look of the place is pleasing to the eye.  It's rustic but comfortable.  The outdoor seats had blankets in case it was chilly.  The service was excellent.  Even though the restaurant has been open a couple of weeks, there weren't any hiccups.  According to us.  The managment had a different take.  More on that later. The food was excellent.  My only complaint was the tortilla was a little too firm. In my opinion, it should be slightly shaky in the middle when served.  Our was not but the flavors were spot on.  Yes..I have very definite opinion about tortilla since I ate vats of it when I lived in Spain.  It's my "test" dish in Spanish tapas restaurants.  If it comes out slightly soft in the middle, the chefs usually know what they're doing.  Even though the tortilla wasn't perfect, the rest of the meal was pretty damn good.  The baby lamb chops were perfectly cooked and seasoned. The hanger steak with truffle sauce wasn't overly truffly (a common problem which ruins the whole dish).  I could've eaten 2 more plates of brussel sprouts they were so good.  I mean, look at that bacon.  How could they be bad? The pièce de résitance: the wine pours were generous.  My personal pet peeve with Estadio is how they serve their wine by the glass.  I don't need 16 oz pour but I would like more than 4 oz when it's $9 a glass.  Thank you.   The management was out in full force for the launch.  Two of the managers came by the table and asked how we were enjoying the meal in addition to our server. They comped two of our dishes because they thought they took too long.  If the level of service and the quality of the food continues, I'll be happy to return.  I had my doubts about this restaurant because it's a chain but I like this sort of chain.  ...
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spooktacular

I love Halloween!  This was one of my favorites from back in the day.  This picture is so old I had to scan it.  My husband was Don King and I was a devil.  Imagine that.  I hope you have a day of fun costumes and lots of candy!...
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latest and greatest

The latest and greatest from October via instagram.  Follow...
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good eats | kale salad with butternut squash and chicken

I know the kale salad trend is waning but for me, it's just beginning.  A couple years ago, my husband tried to make kale chips and they were gross.  It was a fluke because kale is delicious!  We've been adding it to our daily veggie mix and it's a nice change from arugula.  Bon appétit. Kale Salad with Butternut Squash and Chicken ingredients Juice of 1/2 lemon 1/2 shallot, chopped 1 teaspoon honey 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes 2 bunches kale, stems removed, leaves shredded or finely chopped 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1/3 cup sliced almonds 1/2 cup chopped, roasted butternut squash  (I sprinkled cinnamon on mine instead of vinegar) 2 tablespoons crumbled goat cheese 3 tablespoon dried cranberries 1 grilled boneless breast of chicken, chopped preparation In a bowl, whisk juice, shallot, honey, salt and pepper flakes. Add kale; toss well. Let sit 20 minutes. Mix in oil. Refrigerate for up to 1 day, or serve immediately. Add almonds, goat cheese, butternut squash and chicken to kale;...
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riveting rooms

I can't believe it's the last week of October and Halloween is upon us.  In honor of the spooktacular holiday, this week's riveting room is dramatic.  Isn't that mirror striking? photo via...
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helloooo friday!

I'm so glad it's Friday.  Even though I work on the weekends, I'm always happy when they arrive.  I hope to see a few friends, try a new restaurant (anyone tried Thally yet?  Or Barcelona?  Both are my list) and enjoy the brisk weather.  Have a good one! photo via instagram.  follow...
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let’s imagine

Champ de Mars, Invalides 4 bedrooms | 3 baths list price |$10,333,425 This time last year, I was preparing for my first trip to Paris.  Today, I'm feeling nostalgic for the gorgeous scenery and homes.  Let's imagine we're buying this lovely 4 bedroom, 3 bath condo on the Left Bank. It has a lovely view of the Siene, updated kitchen and baths plus a room for the staff and a cellar.  It's only $10,000,000,...
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domino magazine..it’s back and with new content

I'm late on this announcement but my copy just arrived and I'm excited!  I love this magazine. When it folded in 2009, I was sad and hoarded all my issues.  I still have them stacked in a pile in my living room and I consult them regularly. When I repainted my condo, the first place I went was a Domino issue to check out favorite interior designer paint colors.   One new aspect to the latest version of Domino is their website.  It has content but more importantly, it has shopping!  Which I think is genius. How often do you see something in a magazine and want to buy it asap? I'm looking forward to lounging on the couch and reading it this evening. Go buy one so it doesn't fold...
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vegas

Vegas was an experience..and not the kind you usually have in Vegas.  Yes, there was gambling, drinking and dancing but there was also a once in a lifetime experience for my mr.   The whole point of the trip was the contest that my husband won on Facebook.  It was unbelievably real: hotel for three nights, my husband's flight, a meal and a show.  We stayed at the Bellagio, saw Jabbawockeez and ate at Sushi Roku courtesy of vegas.com. Then there was the golf and the gear. He and the other contest winners played a round with Ryan Moore at TPC Las Vegas. Then True Linkswear gave them two pairs of shoes, a golf bag, two hats and an embroidered shirt commemorating the day. Unfortunately, nobody hit the hole in one for $1,000,000.  (which sucks, right?  i knew the odds of it happening were nil to none but still..i had a lot of fun daydreaming about what we'd do with the winnings!) Meanwhile, while he was hobnobbing on the golf course, I enjoyed the beautiful weather at the Bellagio pool. It was one of the highlights of my trip along with a stellar massage at the Bellagio spa.  I also really enjoyed the spectacular dinners we experienced at Bartolotto and Julian Serrano.   Would I go back to Vegas?  No way. For me, there's not one redeeming feature to the town. I should preface the statement by saying I don't like to gamble. However, I'm grateful I was able to go.  I'm also thrilled my husband had such a cool experience.  Thanks True Linkswear!       golf photos via True Linkswear Facebook page, bellagio pool via instagram....
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riveting rooms

Do you ever start the week exhausted?  Instead of feeling refreshed, you feel like hibernating in bed (especially one like the photo above?? I love it!) for the day? That's how I feel today.  Last weeks Vegas trip was fun but tiring.  I still have jet lag and I got back on Thursday!  I've also been busy, busy, busy since we returned. Which is never a bad thing but uf.   photo via...
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this happened today

I love when a deal unfolds exactly as it should:  it looks good, sells fast and goes for signficantly over list. Congrats to my...
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things to do | charles marville exhibit at the national gallery of art

Before the government shut down, I toured the Charles Marville: Photographer of Paris exhibit at the National Gallery of Art.  I was curious to see Paris from Marville's point of view in 1862.  When the museums re-open, make sure to check it out.  It runs till January 5th and it's fascinating....
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