Tag Archives: Boston

Cooking with CourseHorse

I received a complimentary ticket to this cooking class from CourseHorse in exchange for a blog post about my experience. However all opinions are my own, and my already-established enthusiasm for Tavern Road’s classes can be read here.

I remember a couple of years ago when, because I was still having a hard time working out less than seven times a week, my therapist suggested I look into taking some fun classes that weren’t fitness-related. I wish something like CourseHorse had existed in Boston back then, because it would have made me much more likely to take her advice (instead I just bought a new coloring book).

Photo by Paul Garmon

CourseHorse is a discovery and booking tool for local classes. Their community outreach manager recently contacted me about sharing an experience at one of the classes listed in their directory. Naturally I picked a cooking class at Tavern Road because I already knew I’d love it, but there were tons of other cooking classes in Boston listed. Cooking isn’t the only activity you can find. Though still in beta here in Boston, CourseHorse already has classes listed in arts, tech, fitness, language, and more. You can search by neighborhood, price point, time of day, and even skill level. Once they officially launch, the amount of classes listed will be even more extensive.

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A Best Dressed New Year

I received a complimentary dress rental in exchange for an honest blog post about my experience. All opinions are my own. Read to the end for a special discount!

I started thinking about New Year’s Eve a few months before December 31st, because Jeff and I made our New Year’s plans pretty early on, the second we found out the Timberfakes (Boston’s Justin Timberlake cover band) were going to be playing the Middle East in Cambridge. We did the same thing last year, and knew it was a solid way to spend the last night of the year.

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The Restaurant To-Do List

People who know me or just follow me on social media know that lately there hasn’t been much variety to where I go out to eat. I spend a ton of time at Eastern Standard. Ward 8 is a great local spot. Bar Mezzana in the South End is incredible. Other than that? Up until recently, I was drawing a blank.

The eggs benedict at Eastern Standard, enjoyed after a kick-butt workout with a side of session IPA.

The farro tagliatelle with duck ragout at Bar Mezzana – a truly incredible dish.

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What I’m Loving Lately

I actually had to search my own blog to see if I’ve previously done a post with this title, because it sounded so familiar. But good news – I haven’t! So here’s a little round-up of a few things I’m loving lately, because I don’t want to write a whole blog post on each of them (and I don’t think that would be nearly as fun for you to read, either).

Blaze Pizza

I’ll start with full disclosure…Blaze sent me two free pizza vouchers, and those are what Jeff and I used the first time we tried this place. But we have also been talking non-stop about it, and have made plans to return on a couple of occasions. (Both plans were foiled for a variety of reasons, but that’s not important.)

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I describe Blaze Pizza as “Subway, but with pizza”. For a flat fee (thick crust is extra…and worth it), you go down the line and pick as many toppings as you want. Then the pizza is fast-fired at an extremely hot temperature, and ready for you in minutes. You can also add finishing touches after the pizza is done, like balsamic vinegar or – oh baby – ranch dressing. While I was happy with the creation I made above, I was very jealous of Jeff’s pizza, which escaped into his stomach before I could get a photo of it. Guess we’ll just have to go back so he can recreate it and I can get my picture! Blaze is a national chain so look for your closest location here.

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Recent Boston Eats

It’s been awhile since I shared some of the good food I’ve experienced here in Boston, so I figured I’d comb through my camera roll and highlight anything I found in there that was taken recently. In my eyes, if I took a picture then the food must have been good (the exception, of course, being if the lighting was awful…in that case, no photographs are taken).

Bar Mezzana: Pasta

If you haven’t tried Bar Mezzana yet, drop what you are doing and go there now. You don’t even have to read the rest of this post; I’m confident the experience you end up having will tell you why I’m recommending it. The restaurant is located in the South End’s luxury Ink Block apartment complex and focuses on pastas, raw seafood, fresh crusty bread topped with all varieties of spreads, and prosciutto with house mozz. LOTS of house mozz.

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I personally cannot stay away from the pastas. I’ve sampled three so far and can’t wait to return for more. I’d recommend all of those three: orecchiette with sausage and fennel, paccheri with lobster, and another variety with rabbit that looks like it’s off the menu now (darn). For dessert, go for an espresso martini. Bar Mezzana’s bar staff is super knowledgeable and this espresso martini is probably the best I’ve ever had.

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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.

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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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Cooking Classes at Tavern Road

Though I received this experience free of charge, all opinions are my own.

Though I haven’t been writing too much lately thanks to an issue with my comments (they all disappeared and I’m not sure where they went…has this ever happened to anyone else?), that doesn’t mean I haven’t had anything to write about. I’ve got a few upcoming posts planned, sharing both fun events I’ve been to and some cool stuff I’ve got coming up. This post falls into the former category. Last month, I got the chance to try one of Tavern Road’s new cooking classes with my friends Matt, Georgina, and Jeannie. Not a bad way to spend a Tuesday night!

Tavern Road is located in Boston’s Fort Point, between the Seaport and Southie. The food, drink, and decor of the restaurant mirror the creativity and innovation often found in the neighborhood (there seems to be public art around every corner). The bar program, headed up by Insta-celeb Tenzin Samdo, is a go-to of mine for both funky and classic cocktails. Chef Louis DiBiccari’s menu of “street food” is mostly small-plates, influenced by global cuisine while composed of an impressive amount of local ingredients. Personal favorites include the burger, anything involving bluefish pate, and all of the tacos.

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Though Tavern Road has hosted wine and guest chef dinners for awhile now, Chef Louis recently started teaching these weekly cooking classes with a focus on using ingredients purchased from the farmers market as recently as that afternoon. Each Tuesday at 6:30PM, students gather for hands-on learning – and eating. And let’s be honest, if there’s eating involved, I’m very likely to say, “I’m in!” So, I did.

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Favorite ClassPass Workouts

I want to preface this post by acknowledging the fact that I was recently quoted in an article about the ClassPass price hike in Boston, otherwise known as “ClassPassGate”. My quote was “this is definitely a tipping point”. But the price doesn’t go up until June, so I have still been enjoying ClassPass as an excellent way to motivate me to not only get somwhere to workout, but have high quality workouts once I’m there. And admittedly, I’m considering staying on because of the amount of studios in my new neighborhood (Charlestown). And, because my mom brought up a valid point: “You know Caitlin, if you stayed in one more night per week, you could afford the new higher price.” Goddammit. She’s right.

But anyway, I wanted to recap my favorite studios/classes, because I feel like I’ve been using ClassPass as a mix of trying new workouts and visiting those that I already knew I liked. So I want to share those that I’ve liked best!

Vixen Army @ BFX Studio

Say what? So this is one of the classes that I never would have tried without ClassPass. The name caught my eye, and after reading the description (“cardio dance fitness program that incorporates choreography from different genres of dance including Hip Hop, Jazz Funk, House and Street styles inspired by live concert performances and videos from chart topping artists”), I had to try it out. I went by myself and left the class thinking two things: “That was fun!” and “I wish I had come to this class with some girlfriends.”

Photo courtesy of our instructor!

Thankfully my friends Jeannie and Allie were 100% willing to give it a shot, and we now have ourselves a Monday night tradition. I would call Vixen Army “Zumba but with twerking”. The songs are familiar and so catchy. The dances are quite easy to learn and follow. And the instructor, Melissa Jurado, is so positive and encouraging! Each class starts with everyone repeating after her, saying affirmations like “I will not judge myself or anyone else in this room” and “Damn I look good for a Monday night”. Yes, it’s cheesy. But it’s also fun and a great workout.

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Pub Run with True Runner

This post is sponsored by Vocalpoint and True Runner. All opinions are my own.

I was recently invited by True Runner, an athletic retailer in The Shoppes at Chestnut Hill, to participate in one of their community running events. The second I heard the words “Pub Run”, I was interested. A workout followed by pizza and beer has my name written all over it!

True Runner was kind enough to send me some cool socks and a really comfy tech tee for the run! But obviously I also needed a bottom component so I headed to the Chestnut Hill store to browse for just that.

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ClassPass to Cocktails

Oops…I went MIA for awhile there. Sorry about that! Those who follow me on Instagram already know that I just returned from a trip to Orlando, FL with my family and boyfriend. I’ll be posting a vacation recap soon, but it already seems so far away given all that I have coming up in Boston this week!

For awhile now, ClassPass has been taunting me with an intro offer of $19 for two-weeks of unlimited classes. I just have been waiting for a period of time to come along with no trips, even short ones, before I activated those two weeks. Well that time is finally here and I’m already addicted! I’ve been taking more days off from the gym and eating/drinking more than ever simultaneously. This has led to me gaining weight and not feeling good about myself at all. I figured ClassPass would be the motivation I needed to work out each day, and so far I’ve been right. I love researching and finding new classes, or classes that I already know I love but at studios I don’t have memberships to. So far I’ve taken Flywheel and Cyc, and have Recycle Studio, Barry’s Bootcamp, and a kickboxing class lined up for the next few days. I don’t remember the last time I felt this psyched for working out!

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