Wednesday, April 29, 2009

2nd St. Love

Returned from Austin and fell in love with 2nd St. District all over again. It’s funny because last year I was interviewing a few boutique owners from Shiki and Girl Next Door and there were probably 5 stores open. This past weekend however, we walked around 2 entire blocks which housed adorable boutiques like Peyton’s Place, brunched at hip resto Taverna and browsed contemporary furniture designs at Ligne Roset. It doesn’t hurt that The W of all W’s is opening right in the heart of 2nd. which has plans to be both a hotel and residential property. Coffee at Teuscher and dessert at Paciugo was the end to a perfect weekend:)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

View from the Veranda

Newly opened Veranda Mediterranean Restaurant is like the super cozy and charming living room of one of your wealthy friends what with its exposed brick, custom made tile backsplash and high beam ceilings. It also happens to be a restaurant, cafĂ© and hookah lounge. Convenient nd delicious. The cuisine is a delicate mix of Arab, Italian and Greek flavors with daily changing options on the menu. The “Veranda Chicken” (a moist chicken breast stuffed with cheese, breaded and topped with sundried tomatoes) and ooey-gooey pistachio and almond filled baklava are unavoidably mouth watering. And unlike traditional eateries, you can grab a cup of espresso and kick back in the outdoor hookah lounge with your laptop (free wi-fi). Added perks include the amazing staff, who are always attentive to their patrons.

(Veranda Mediterranean Restaurant; 303 Grasshopper (off I-10 & Hwy 6), Houston, TX 77079; Opens 4/25)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Take a Load Off

Spa Week is fast approaching which means one thing, ah cheap treatments from luxury spas that would normally require one to shell out the big bucks. But for this one magical week, all you need is $50 bucks (per treatment). The downside: no Spa Week in Houston. The upside: $50 is worth the drive to Austin, San Antonio and Dallas. I saw one of those shirts the other day “Keep Houston Rich,” are Houstonians really too rich for Spa Week? Come on people, don’t make me sick.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The New Greece

Way back when, I was sitting in an adorable restaurant in Athens when the table next to us bust out in spontaneous song and dance accompanied by a synchronized group effort from other restaurant patrons which included claps, whistles and money throwing. Fast forward to last night where the same scene took place in Byzantios Cafe & Bar on West Grey. It was amazing to see the same display of enthused cultural comradery in a location so far from that tiny Greek restaurant I sat in some three years ago. It completely took me back and the food was also very comparable to the real deal (the spanakopita is to die for).

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Pizza Wars

As a former Austinite, I used to love hitting up the Drag to get a bite of Mellow Mushroom which has some amazing pizza if you are into layers of cheese upon cheese topped with more cheese. Healthy…no, but totally worth the calorie fest. A new joint Pink’s Pizza has recently joined the ranks of pizza pie eateries in Houston and has now become my Houston version of Mellow Mushroom. It tops its pies with a variety of eccentric ingredients which include the likes of gorgonzola, cranberries, sun-dried tomato, marinated artichokes, you get it. They also have something I am dying to try called the crack brownie (milk chocolate with chocolate chunks and almonds) which sounds better than the real thing.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Two Companies I Cannot Stand

Drumroll please….T-Mobile and the "ultimate driving machine" BMW. I can’t stand either of these companies, they are complete and total ripoffs, why anyone in their right mind would subscribe to either of their services is beyond me. I won’t go into detail but if you really want to hear about it, email me. (I think I’m even going to join the website because I believe so wholeheartedly in the mantra.) At this point I obviously have no choice but to stick with them until I can a) get out of my contract with T-Mobile and b) have enough to get an F-150. Thanks for allowing me to vent.

BTW I found a hilarious blog rant on Tmobile.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Zumba, Zumba, Zumba

Two summers ago, I discovered a magical class that taught me how to salsa, meringue and reggaeton my way into a whole new world of fitness. In learning random combined techniques of belly dancing and the Argentine tango along with several other genres of dance, I figured out that you don’t have to be perfectly coordinated or genetically equipped with this gift, but for a small fee of…well how much your membership cost is, you may be able to reluctantly agree to test out that new salsa club. Yes, some moves might be cheesy. Yes, you may have a 58 yr old outdance you but the truth is...who cares, because you have mastered how to shake it like Shakira. Check out for more info.