Category Archives: Travel

What I Ate in Charleston

Once again, I am extremely guilty of going MIA from this blog for way too long. I’ve simply been lacking in both both time and inspiration to blog. But today I hope to make it up to you with a fun post about the awesome food and drink I experienced when I visited Charleston, South Carolina for a wedding over Labor Day weekend with my family!

I arrived first out of the five of us, but kept myself plenty entertained by heading to a solo lunch at Butcher & Bee. My coworker went to college in Charleston, so she had sent me a long list of recommendations that I knew I could trust…and this place was on the list. I was sure it was a solid spot the second they served my sparkling wine in a coupe glass – my favorite way to drink bubbles.

I loved that the lunch menu featured an option to try three of their many mezze dishes. I picked the heirloom beans with soft boiled egg, eggplant with olives and green tahini, and whipped feta with fermented honey and cracked black pepper. Everything was absolutely scrumptious!

As you can probably guess, I saved my favorite – the feta – for last.

Some adorable decor at the entrance of Butcher & Bee.

After my family arrived and got settled into our Airbnb, we called an Uber to King Street, Charleston’s bustling downtown area. There we stopped into The Cocktail Club, a place on my must-visit list. My boyfriend Jeff’s good friend and former coworker Tyler is actually a bartender there, so it was great to meet him and try some of his cocktails. My mom and sister were over the moon happy with their Cosmopolitans, my mom calling it the best she’d ever had. My dad and I both went with vodka martinis. We all had a great time chatting with Tyler and taking in the bar scene. I even bought a cigar…yes, they sell them in the restaurant!

After our drinks were gone (long gone), we headed out to The Cocktail Club’s roof deck area to take some pictures before running off to the next stop, a welcome reception for the wedding.

The welcome reception was fun but wine-filled, which left us VERY hungry. Thank goodness for Domino’s. Ordering pizza from there while in Charleston, land of amazing restaurants, may have been a faux pas…but it was also a necessity. And really, it was so nice to hang out with my family and eat pizza while watching Netflix and drinking red wine. Talk about relaxing!

I was right back on the restaurant grind the next morning, though. After swinging by Pure Barre for a really good class, I met my family for brunch at The Rarebit, another spot recommended by my coworker. She said they had the best Moscow Mules in the city, but I’m not a mule girl, so I went with a Southside. This is a refreshing gin cocktail and Rarebit’s version was absolutely the best one I’ve ever had! For my meal I selected a dish on special, a shrimp cake Benedict. I really wish I’d taken a picture of it because it was stellar, but alas, I was too busy hamming it up with the fam to do so. We were all beyond impressed by both the quality and price of the food, though!

Later that night it was wedding time. I once again had an amazing experience using Boston’s in-store dress rental service, Best Dressed. I can’t recommend them enough, and paid for this rental in full (no #sponsored situation here). I know this post is about food and drink, but I had to throw them a shout-out. I will say, though, that the Southern food at the wedding was the best wedding food I’ve ever had, by far. The open bar was also rather enjoyable.

You know you’re a blogger when you’ve trained your mom to take solo pics for you.

The day after the wedding, the whole family was moving a little slowly. My parents and sister opted to spend the day at the beach, but my brother and I both had flights to catch back to New England. (Am I the only one who prefers to leave a “gap day” between a trip and going back to work? I wanted to fly back on Sunday so I’d have Monday to relax at home.) I really wanted to squeeze in one more restaurant though, so I took myself and my book to brunch at another place on King Street, called Prohibition.

I rarely ever order the same drink twice in a row, but the above pictured Charleston Fizz was so good that I had to do just that. It contained Brugal Extra Dry Rum, Tito’s Vodka, lime, cream, egg white, lemon bitters, and seltzer. The cream makes it sound heavy, but it really wasn’t. It was like drinking a key lime cloud.

For brunch I went with the avocado benedict, which consisted of avocado and heirloom tomato on english muffin, topped with a poached egg and dill hollandaise sauce. I wanted to go with something a bit lighter so I wouldn’t be dragging on my flight. I was overall really pleased with my last choice of restaurant to visit while in Charleston, but am also already itching to go back and try MORE places…as well as return to some of these.

Oh, and of course my dinner on the plane ride home consisted of cheese and meat with Stacy’s Pita chips and bad red wine…because, travel.

Have you ever been to Charleston? What are some of your favorite spots?

Did you travel for Labor Day weekend, lay low at home, or a mix of both?

5 Must-Visit Spots on Nantucket

I’m going to preface this post by saying that I am a Nantucket tourist. I don’t consider myself a regular visitor, nor do I consider myself to be the island’s number one fan. So to you Nantucket experts, if you finish this post and think that my picks for must-visit spots on the island are obvious and “tourist-y”…you are absolutely correct!

But they are also great picks for someone traveling to the island for an annual trip (hello, me) or a first-time visit. I just got back from my fourth Nantucket Wine Fest weekend and am happy to say that I checked off almost everything on my to-do list! And that left me inspired to write this post, and share some of my favorite places to visit.

1. Cisco Brewers

Here you can find a brewery, distillery, and winery all in one place. There is truly something for everyone at Cisco Brewers. Food trucks are always around in the afternoon, which is a good thing because there is a LOT of booze to try here. The last time I visited, we had lunch at a seafood truck called The Lobster Trap. However I went with the chicken fingers and fries, because I was really craving some old fashioned greasy food. My suggested course of action at Cisco? Have an ice cold tap beer, then head to Triple 8 Distillery for a refreshing cocktail. End at Nantucket Vineyard with a wine flight, and be sure to conclude it with the port…it’s something special. After all that, grab some food and try to stop yourself from impulse-buying Cisco merchandise.

Lunch from the Lobster Trap, paired with an IPA.

Dad and I in the wine tasting room.

2. Cru

This place is a scene, and that is reflected in the prices on the menu. But oh man, is it fun. I allow myself one visit to Cru per trip to Nantucket, and it’s always worth it. Brunch is probably my favorite time to go, but a mid-day snack on the outdoor patio/lounge isn’t bad either. Also, any restaurant that serves sparkling wine in a coupe glass gets my vote.

Lilly is key Cru attire.

3. The Nautilus

I could probably spend a decent part of my day sitting at The Nautilus‘ bar, chatting with the friendly bartenders and watching them make drinks. The cocktails incorporate freshly-squeezed fruit juices (right in front of you, squeezed to order) and you can even get one in a porron if you’re feeling aggressive. I would say that, in terms of hospitality and quality of drinks, Nautilus is the bar in Nantucket that most reminds me of my favorite bar in Boston, Eastern Standard. If I lived on the island, I could see myself becoming a regular there.

From @nautilusnantucket on Instagram.

4. Boarding House

Espresso. Martinis. Okay, that’s not the only reason why I’m recommending Boarding House, but it’s up there. I’ve never actually eaten at this bar, but it’s fun enough on its own as a place to go out. During Wine Fest weekend it is absolutely packed most of the time, but the bartenders are seasoned pros and still serve drinks efficiently. Like I said, the espresso martinis are amazing. But the fact that Modelo is on the beer list is pretty great too.

5. Nantucket Prime

This is a great restaurant for both a special meal and a casual gathering with friends. In fact, I did both at Nantucket Prime this past weekend; I took my parents there for a special dinner, and enjoyed some drinks outside on the outdoor patio the night prior. I also tried both burgers on the dinner menu, including the Big mACK, an amped-up version of a Big Mac. If you want to splurge, you can go for the filet and some family-style sides. The wine list is also very impressive, and includes a Pinot Noir from Nantucket Vineyard, which is what my parents and I chose to have with dinner.

The Big mACK! Source

So there you have it, my five favorite spots on Nantucket. I’m sure there are more that I haven’t even discovered yet, and that’s why I’ll be going bACK (I know, eye roll) as soon as possible!

Have you been to Nantucket? What are some of your favorite spots?

Valentine’s Getaway in Newport

Though my stay and some food and drink were complimentary, all opinions are my own.

Jeff and I took a couple of off-season trips to Newport, RI last winter, and we were fortunate enough to be able to do so again this year on a little Valentine’s Day weekend trip thanks to the Newport Marriott. We stayed there in November 2015 and had a lovely time, so we went into this trip with high expectations that – I’m happy to report- were met thanks to a gorgeous room, above-and-beyond hospitality, and tasty food and drink.

The harbor view rooms do not disappoint.

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Exploring Plum Island With Maven

I received my Drive Maven experience as well as some of the food in this post free of charge, but opinions of my experiences are 100% my own.

Jeff and I had a great time during our recent trip to Blue Inn in Plum Island, MA. That was thanks in part to our mode of transportation, a red 2016 Cadillac ATS from Maven. Maven is a car-sharing service, similar to ZipCar, that is offered in Boston, LA , Chicago, and other large cities. But the biggest – and best – difference from ZipCar is that, for a limited time, Maven is free to join! Once I heard about that major benefit, I was completely on board when the company offered us a car to take on our weekend getaway.


Maven has nine different vehicle pickup locations in Boston, and we picked the one closest to our Charlestown apartment, the Government Center parking garage. The Maven app actually serves as the keys to your car. Once next to our Cadillac, I was able to use my phone to unlock the vehicle. Jeff also downloaded the app onto his phone and, signed in under my account, had access to unlock and lock the car as well. Which worked out well, since I usually (always) ask him to drive.

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Getaway to Blue in Plum Island

Though I received my stay at Blue Inn free of charge, my opinions are 100% my own. In short, I’d pay to go back in a second!

I have never encountered a Lark Hotels location I didn’t love (I’ve stayed at Gilded in Newport, and dined at Whitehall in Camden), and last Sunday’s visit to Blue Inn, located in Plum Island, MA, was no exception. The Plum Island and Newburyport area have always been special to Jeff and me, because we took our first overnight trip there as a couple and also visited Plum Island on one of our first dates. Staying at Blue sounded great to us because we already know the area (well, Jeff does), so the trip felt like a staycation despite us being almost an hour away from Boston. Blue picked out a gorgeous ocean view king suite for us, which somehow managed to feel like a quaint beach house while also feeling fabulous and luxurious.


I always appreciate a combo of beach and fall decor!


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Nantucket Wine Fest 2016

I actually started this post as a “Five Highlights Of Summer” thing, but quickly realized I had too much to say about and too many pictures from Nantucket Wine Fest to not make it its own post, despite the fact that the event took place three months ago! But wine, parties, and fabulous New England destinations never get old, so let’s get to it.


My favorite spot on the island (and unfortunately the most expensive) is Cru!


Cheesin’ in the Vineyard Vines store in town.

ACK Wine Fest weekend took place during my last two weeks at 90+ Cellars, and I can’t think of a better send-off. This was my third (and definitely not last) time in Nantucket for this crazy whirlwind of work, parties, food, wine, and general ridiculousness. And I got to bring Jeff with me and share the fun with him!

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Journey to Western Mass: Part 2

Did you miss part one of my recap? Click here to read! Also, for any of my readers who live in Boston and love fitness, I’m hosting an Instagram giveaway for two tickets to the Jimmy Fund Fit Fest taking place this Saturday on the Esplanade. Enter here!

When I last left off, my boyfriend Jeff and I were convening with our friends Matt and Dave in the lobby of the Hotel Northampton for dinner. One of the best parts about our trip was the fact that our hotel was located right in the center of town, and we could walk everywhere! We took a short stroll to Bistro Les Gras, a farm to table restaurant with menus that change daily. First we got a round of appetizers, including a fantastic steak tartare.


Three out of four of us went with the burger as our entree, thanks to recommendations from many locals we’d talk to throughout the day. The burger lived up to its reputation, and its flavor made it obvious that it was ground in-house.

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Journey to Western Mass: Part 1

Back when I lived in Connecticut, I lived less than an hour from Western Massachusetts, yet never bothered to explore the area. After this past weekend, I’m definitely regretting that. The Hampshire County Tourism Board sent me, my boyfriend Jeff, and my friends/amazing couple Matt and Dave on a fantastic weekend trip to Western Mass, and I’m already wondering when I can return!


Jeff and I hit the road Saturday morning and enjoyed an easy ride out west, where we met Matt and Dave. Our first stop was Mineral Hills Winery in Florence, MA. There we met with the owner, Larry Goddard. He showed us an absolutely incredible time that, as Jeff put it, “ruined wine tastings for him forever”. That’s a good thing – it means we really got the VIP treatment!

Larry greeted us with tastes of May Wine, which is a German beverage traditionally served on May Day.

Larry greeted us with tastes of May Wine, which is a German beverage traditionally served on May Day.

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A Florida Birthday

March 22nd was my 27th birthday and I truly felt like the celebrations lasted for days and days. Jeff took me out for a great birthday dinner in Boston the Friday before, and I also visited one of my favorite bars with a ton of friends for an epic night out on Saturday. But I spent my actual birthday in Orlando, Florida with my family and Jeff.

No Florida birthday is complete without Publix cake, or a heavy dose of Lilly Pulitzer. My brother and sister gifted me a Lilly wine tote and stemless wine glasses, and my family gifted me my favorite white cake with white icing.

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Weekend Getaway in Cape Cod

Back toward the end of last year, I spotted a Gilt City deal for the Ocean Edge Resort in Brewster, MA – on Cape Cod. I thought an off-season getaway with my boyfriend Jeff would be a great way to break up the long winter and booked a room using the deal for this past Saturday (February 20th). During booking, I wondered if we’d end up with a snowy and frigid weekend. Certainly the opposite happened – the weekend was sunny and the temperatures mild. We really lucked out!

Our favorite part of any hotel is a nice fuzzy bathrobe!

Unfortunately we did not luck out in the realm of resort patrons…and timing with February school break! The Ocean Edge was CRAWLING with kids. It didn’t seem we could escape them; visits to the restaurant on-site at both 5:30PM and 9PM proved that there was no ideal time to dine, as at both hours almost every table had a child sitting at it. I love my friends’ kids, but other than that I am not a kid person. So after a quick dinner, we ended up hiding in our room for most of the night, aside from a quick dip in the hot tub. But it’s OK – we had bathrobes, lots of channels to watch, and plenty of bubbles. Plus the room was really nice! I just don’t think I’ll be staying at the Ocean Edge again, or recommending it to anyone unless they have kids.

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