Saturday, April 02, 2011

going on a treasure hunt

X marks the spot
so, through some murky email communications, somehow we locked ourselves into moving out of our current apartment by may 31st. this is actually what we had planned on, except we had hoped to identify somewhere to move INTO first!

therefore, today we are going on an apartment hunt. current top contenders?

option #1: west village


pros:
fun area, with walking distance to restaurants, shops, and the like -- would be really fun on weekends
closer to whole foods
really dramatic floor plans with one con -- no windows in the bedroom


awesome kitchen with tons of organizing space!

cons:
not the safest area to run around and i wouldn't go that far on foot after dark
not as close to work

option #2: trinity commons


pros:
brand spankin' new


walking distance to work, blue point yoga, and the newest branch of LoYo [currently serving HONEY-LAVENDER yogurt!! and we WILL be stopping by today.]
i think i could design a safe running route from out-the-door
(i think) nicer gym/pool/amenities

cons:

definitely not as fun of an area [and really, other than the above locations, you'd have to drive most places]
might be a little too saturated with undergrads
perhaps smaller floor plans for the same $ [not totally sure about this]

because i had envisioned a baby on the way by moving time, we were initially planning to move into a 2-bedroom [currently, we live in a 1BR/1Bath space with about 900 square feet - and this works fine for us]. however, since that isn't yet the case, we are going to consider a 1-bedroom again [with the option to move in a year, of course -- HOPEFULLY we'll need the extra room by then!]. extra time = extra $ = extra ability to do more fun things. see, there is an up-side to all of the TTC drama.

wish us luck! any apartment-hunting suggestions? josh and i are hoping to just be seized with a decisive opinion, since that's what usually happens for us!

KITCHEN chapel hill
one thing we will miss when we move is the chapel hill restaurant scene. don't get me wrong -- i think that durham's food options are just are good or BETTER! but right now, we have easy access to both. and we have a lot of 'standards' in the chapel hill area that we will be sad to leave behind.

last night, we tried kitchen. i had high expectations for this restaurant centered around "simply prepared, delicious food made from fresh, mostly local, ingredients." as you'll see, we definitely enjoyed our experience . . .

we arrived late [josh worked a 16 hour day!!!] and were seated right away, but i was impressed that a nearly 9 pm the place was hopping [many places in this area are really winding down around that time].

we started with a quartino of the house red, which was a juicy and bright barbera.

it was great, but i think josh needed more than 125 ml of wine after the day he had!

with our wine, we served some fresh warm bread with seasoned butter. the bread was a fantastic sourdough and one of the highlights of the meal! sorry for the lack of photo; josh and i were super-hungry and had already ruined the lovely presentation by the time i thought about capturing the image.

next, we moved onto mussels. the menu offers several versions, and we chose the variation in a seafood-cream sauce.

both of us loved every morsel of this generous pile

the moules were served with frites [which i don't think we even realized when we ordered] which were great, especially dunked into the seafood-cream broth!


i don't crave fries or eat them that often, but i have to admit these were fantastic.

for his entrée, josh selected the local NC trout. while the sides were great, he wasn't the hugest fan of the preparation. more seasoning/salt next time?

NC trout served with local green beans and mashed potatoes

i ordered off of the appetizer menu, which was a good thing because after all of the bread, mussels & fries i was no longer super-hungry! however, i did enjoy this savory-but-delicate slice of tart:

caramelized onion and goat-cheese tart served with a sprout and radish salad

two thumbs up! and i'm pretty sure the sprouts were the same local ones i used in our thai salad this week.

sadly, we were too full for dessert, but next time i want to save room for the lemon-ricotta cheesecake. overall, it was a very nice experience, great atmosphere, and good food for a really reasonable price -- locals, i definitely recommend giving kitchen a try!

okay, off to run some errands and do yoga before our big treasure hunt begins . . .happy saturday!