Embrace Sweets

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Summertime Music

What is it about summer music, Jason Mraz, Bob Marley and Michael Buble? All those wonderful, fun, light-hearted artist.

I find it amazing how music can tele-port you. You could be having the crappiest day ever and your song comes on and suddenly you feel upbeat and you're instantly in a better mood. Music just makes everything better, it's really crazy how that works.

I love how every time Jason Mrazs' song, I'm Yours comes on:

"I've been spending way too long checking my tongue in the mirror
And bending over backwards just to try to see it clearer
But my breath fogged up the glass
And so I drew a new face and laughed
I guess what I'm be saying is there ain't no better reason
To rid yourself of vanity and just go with the seasons
It's what we aim to do
Our name is our virtue"

I can't help but smile and imagine myself playing in the ocean, running between the surf and drinking coconut water with someone I love.

I could be in a restaurant and Michael Buble will come on over the speakers and I'll be reminded of all my past loves, I don't think about the pain or hurt or why we aren't together; I think about all the passion and good times and that love that I felt fills my heart again, how at that moment everything felt like it was going to be more than just OK and I knew I was safe.

I love Nina Simone and every time she comes on I feel like the sexiest woman in the room. I feel like she's singing to me and giving me instructions on just how to be "that chick", 'Put Some Sugar in My Bowl' is her telling her man exactly what she wants and how. If that's not sexy I don't know what is. It's just that sensuality, that magic in her voice, it makes you feel like you're something else.

Music is so, so powerful and it really doesn't matter what type of music you're into, if you feel it, that music literally gets inside you, inside your bones and just radiates through every cell in your body. For those three minutes and thirty seconds or longer you almost feel invincible, you feel as if nothing could touch you. 

I love music. I love that I am fortunate to have my life filled with beautiful music. Even when I can't travel or my days don't work out exactly the way I had hoped, music is my salvation and my vehicle to a place of my wildest dreams. To live without music should be a crime and to live without music in your heart should be impossible.

Go ahead and play your favorite song, Rock On!

Cool, Refreshing, Fraiche!

I didn't think it was actually possible to taste heaven, but somehow by way of a little french restaurant called Fraiche I found my way there. My mom and I went there for lunch yesterday, we happen to be in the Santa Monica area and thought it'd be nice to stop in.

Fraiche, is absolutely lovely. The decor is simple yet elegant and although we arrived 20 minutes before lunch ended there was still quite the crowd. Businessmen in suits discussing deals over pizza, ladies dishing the dirt over a dirty martini and sweet couples who just wondered in off the street occupied the corners. French music, Nina Simone and Michael Buble serenaded us while the staff took extra special care of our needs.

The Staff was limited to a Maitre d' and server but there was really no need for more. Our food arrived promptly and was everything I could have imagined and more.

I ordered the MONKFISH “FRANCAISE” w/Sautéed spinach, Yukon gold potato puree,
Shallots, white wine - $21

and mom had the STEAK FRITES flat iron steak, w/hand cut fries, bordelaise - $22

Let me just begin with the Monkfish, honestly I'm not even sure what a Monkfish is or how it looks and frankly I probably don't want to know - but I do know that it is by far the most incredible, delicious, tender, juiciest fish I've ever had the pleasure to eat. Considering it's a fish, the texture was more like a very tender chicken sauteed in LOTS of butter and rolled around your tongue so delicately. This meal was absolutely fantastic from beginning to end.

I filled my first fork full with a piece of Monkfish, potatoes and a generous helping of Spinach - and literally felt as if I  had just experienced a party of sensations in my mouth. Upon recommendation from the Maitre d', I paired the dish with an Italian Sauvignon Blanc and it was 'Parfait' (perfect in French). The smoothness and hints of peach from the wine worked amazingly well with the butter wine sauce surrounding the fish.

The Steak Frites was just as commendable, although I prefer my steak medium, mom requested medium well. It was tender and the rub gave it excellent flavor (peppery and smokey). This was a great lunch time choice as the sides were hand cut fries. The dish filled you but you didn't finish feeling like you consumed a small cow.

It was easy to go back to work after this meal, we were beyond satisfied physically, emotionally and spiritually. I do believe I had a spiritual experience with my Monkfish.

I can not say enough about Fraiche, and would recommend this place in a heart beat. The Santa Monica location just opened recently (their first location being in Culver City). The owners own some of LA's finest restaurants and this one is really no exception. I love their concepts and in my opinion its rare to find a group that is good at so many different types of themes.

I am looking forward to experiencing more from this restaurant group and having more 'spiritual' experiences with a meal.

If French cooking is your thing and you want to try your hand at it, I highly  recommend the Mastering the Art of French Cooking cookbook below. It is a great book to start off with and it's by none other than the fabulous Julia Child. Perhaps you can make a meal for some friends and then enjoy the film, Julie & Julia for dessert.

Bon Appetit

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Joy of Butter

Hello all you fellow foodies and vino lovers, welcome to my blog - The Joy of Butter. I have spent my life eating and drinking (like most of us) to survive only to realize in my 20's that food, drink, and life is meant to be beautiful, exception and a truly remarkable experience.

I know there are a ton of food blogs, wine blogs even blogs on how to live your life to the fullest, but I hope you'll follow me on my journey around the world (and through California), in my kitchen and to the best food and wine events there are.

There are so many wonderful places to experience and I want to share my experiences with you! So grab a fork and let's get started.

Bon Appétit