Monday, August 25, 2014

Trendspotting: Peacock Chairs

I’ve always been such a fan of hippie-chic style.  A bonafide bohemian at heart, I adore everything from bell bottoms and flared sleeves, to feathered hair and sky-high platforms.  I sometimes think I was supposed to experience the 70’s in all its free-spirited splendor, decorating the pad with shag rugs, lacquered furniture, bold color and my signature mixed prints.  

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Alas, I realize I’m the product of the 70’s and the 80’s combined:  All out glamour done with a devil-may-care attitude.  No wonder I have such an affinity for peacock chairs from that era:  

|Unapologetically gaudy, yet undoubtedly cool|

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I’d say that’s the perfect combination, wouldn’t you?

 Scored this beauty at my local Salvation Army for $25!  Wooohooooo!


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Tell me, what’s your favorite era for fashion and design?

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Friday, August 22, 2014

Food Porn Friday- Din Tai Fung

Oh DTF, how you’ve disappointed me so.  While I’ve spent the last few years trekking my ass all the way up to Arcadia for the freshest soup dumplings in town, you’ve finally succumbed to the masses and opened up shop right here in my hood at South Coast Plaza.  Smart move since you’re now a bonafide heavy hitter with presence, bad move since you’re now just another dining destination in a SoCal super-mall.  

While I never mind the 3-hour long wait (especially when I can precede said dinner with happy hour at Charlie Palmer’s with a bit of buzzed cardio shopping to follow) what I do mind is the newbie mentality/ can’t handle this crazy crowd/ on a regular Thursday night rush.  The staff may be polite and courteous, but even that can’t save your lukewarm (shoulda been scalding) soup dumplings from my lukewarm (coulda been applauding) feelings about your latest venture.

 Let’s take a look at what’s on the menu today my loves:

 Shanghai Rice Cakes with Chicken

CLAIM-TO-FAME Pork XiaoLongBao

Fried Pork chop

Cucumber Salad

Pork Fried Noodles

Shrimp and Pork Potstickers (ordered extra crispy)

Seaweed and Bean Curd in a Vinegar Dressing

Shrimp and Pork Shao Mai

Shanghai Rice Cakes with Shrimp

This is the typical menu that I ALWAYS order at Din Tai Fung (Arcadia) except most of the dumplings were not served in the typical steam-bath fashion.  You know, where your face gets a complimentary spa facial the minute they release that basket top.  It’s usually quite the spectacle given that seconds after the intro, you dive right into the most deliciously decadent, heaven-on-a-spoon, savory soup and pork-filled dumplings outside of Taiwan!

Sauteed Mustard Greens with Ginger

Shrimp and Pork Dumplings

Pork Chop Fried Rice

Mixed Wontons in Spicy Sauce

Noodles with Spicy Sauce (sauce on bottom)

Wood Ear Mushrooms in a Vinegar Dressing

Spicy Beef Soup

Sauteed String Beans with Garlic

Sadly, only the desserts did it for me on this visit... 

Sweet Taro XiaoLongBao

Red Bean Rice Cake

3333 Bristol St. #2071
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
(714) 549-3388

*Insider’s tip:  Having just opened earlier this week on the upper level of the Sears wing in South Coast Plaza, expect to wait at least 3 hours for a party of 10+ since they don't accept reservations.  There aren't any round table tops dedicated for large parties; they have to make the effort to push smaller tables together to accommodate.  But don’t fret, you can leave your name at check-in and they’ll text you 15 minutes before you’re seated.  That means plenty of time to walk around the mall, do a little shopping, and maybe even have a cocktail at nearby eateries while you wait.  

They do have a full liquor license with a cute little bar in the main entry room; however these seats are saved primarily for guests dining at the facility.  So unfortunately it’s not a first-come, first-served basis to simply order drinks, you must be a dining patron.  As of now, the jury’s still out for DTF at South Coast y’all.  I am a MEGA fan of the Arcadia location but seeing as how they’re decades into this dumpling business with a guaranteed 1hr minimum wait time no matter what day of week, I’m sure SCP's location will be just as gnarly down the line.*

Din Tai Fung definitely deserves a visit though guys, go mid-week during lunch for the lowest wait times!

Are you hungry yet???

Bon Appétit mes amis!

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