Saturday, February 21, 2015

Food Adventure: Road Dogs and Twisted Chill

Hangry. Hungry and angry. I'm a chronic patient of hangriness. If I'm hungry, I might as well be in a snickers commercial. 

Because I overslept and was late to my appointment this morning, I skipped breakfast and was very hungry two hours later. You could imagine the hallelujah that played in my head when I walked out of the library and saw these food trucks. 

Road Dogs Weenie Wagon is a San Jose based food truck that sells gourmet hot dogs as whimsical as their name. Offering different regional themes and combinations, the menu was teeming with unconventional flovors I was curious to try. 

My dad wanted a hot dog too so I got three: the Bra Bra, the West Coast, and the Chicago. 

The Bra Bra($6) was dissapointing. The sausage was mushy and the texture was too slushy when paired with the creamy chipotle sauce. There wasn't any flavor in the pork sausage but was instead concentrated in the sauce. The sauerkraut managed to add some crunchiness and salvage the weird texture but only a little. I think for its size and taste, this hot dog was a little overpriced. 2/10

The West Coast ($6) was much more enjoyable in terms of both taste and texture. The beef frankfurter was juicy and offered a texture and thickness that made each bite feel more substantial. This time it felt like a hot dog. I enjoyed the sweet pickled tones of the pepper with its spicier aftertaste. The mayonnaise helped keep the taste cool overall so that he flavors weren't too overwhelming. It was better than the Bra Bra but not spectacular. My dad and I agreed that the hot dogs would have tasted better if the buns were toasted a little more. 5/10

My dad had the Chicago ($6) which was... Okay. It was good but we wish it had been tastier, spicier. It wasn't anything too special 5/10

Twisted Chill was delightful. The truck is also a San Jose based restaurant on wheels. Twisted Chill sells icecream at $3 for one scoop, and floats at $5. The truck is cheerfully colorful and significantly less creepy than the jingling white truck that used to parole my neighborhood during my childhood summers. 

While I'm the type that judges desserts heavily on packaging and presentation, I would forgo that analysis for ugly but compostable cups. The cream soda float with pistachio icecream was surprisingly not too creamy. The fizziness of the cream soda kept the float from being too heavy while the chunks of pistachio helped break up the texture of the drink. To my pleasant surprise the drink evolves in its taste as time goes on. The icecream sinks to the bottom and mixes with the soda to intensify the creaminess and pistachio flavor of the drink. My only gripe is that the drink was hard to consume without foaming over the top and some chunks of pistachio didn't go through the straw. 8/10

While I wore my pajamas to my errands this morning, I can still reminisce yesterday's effort. 

This was my first time ordering anything from Choies, but I liked most of the things I received. The only problem was that the order took a while to process and ship, about 20 business days. The shirt's sleeves are also a bit long but I enjoy the flowy, ethereal look of the lace mixed with the bright cobalt color. For ten bucks I can't really complain. 

Hat: Nordstroms
Sunglasses: Nordstroms 
Lace Shirt: Choies 
Skirt: H and M 
Shoes: Forever 21 
Wallet: Some side store in China? 


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Manic Mondays

Nobody likes Mondays. It's a shocking juxtaposition to the exciting saturdays and lazy sundays, which make it hard to appreciate.

For us, last monday was an especially busy and stressful time! Producing a publication is a lot of work. We might not have ourselves together, but it's fun to try and look the part ;) 

On K: 

      I think the shirt and necklace combo convey a nice, "I'm responsible and getting my edits done so please don't fuck with me" vibe which is perfect during production time. (Just kidding, love everyone on the magazine) I'm pretty short so the longer cardigan and heeled boots make me seem just a tad taller, which is much appreciated. 

Necklace: Nordstroms
Shirt: J. Crew
Jeans: American Rag

Cardigan: Urban Outfitters
Shoes: Stuart Weitzman 

On S:

Sweater: Demasque (Which I think is closed and makes me sad :( )
Skirt: Ebay
Socks/Tights: Express
Shoes: Converse
Necklace: Francesca's

I love that the black and white elements in S's outfit are broken up with a playful houndstooth skirt and delicately balanced jewelry. Houndstooth is a gorgeous print I've been hoping to try - K

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Foodie Adventures: Umami Burger

u·ma·mi /o͞oˈmämē/ noun - a pleasant, savory taste

For the namesake of our blog, we inevitably had to go on some adventure. And what could possibly be more adventurous than downtown Palo Alto? While we didn't go far, we were able to explore some interesting flavors. Time to put that 10 credits of CTE to good use in this food review.

K: The Umami Burger restaurant can be described as a library meets cabin-in-the-woods meets art school. Bookshelves offer some form of privacy between tables which was nice. 

S: I ordered the actual Umami burger ($11.50), also known as the Original Burger. Gotta try what a restaurant calls its original dish, right? The burger has a one juicy beef patty cooked to your preference of doneness (mine was medium rare), a sweet and succulent roasted tomato, shiitake mushroom, caramelized onions, crunchy parmesan frico, and Umami Burger’s unique house ketchup. It’s always such a great feeling when each ingredient in a dish work with each other to create the perfect harmony, and that is exactly what happened in this dish. The juiciness of the tomato, patty, and onion combined with the crunchiness of the bun and frico and the chewiness of the shiitake mushrooms create such a pleasant texture in the mouth — not to mention the extraordinary taste of the burger as well. After biting into the burger, I detected some sweet notes from the tomato and onion, then some fattier notes from the frico and patty itself. The patty was definitely made from high quality meat, cooked to the perfection, rounding off the perfect bite of the burger. 

K: Until I tried the Truffle Burger ($12), I had never tasted a burger that felt so luxurious in my mouth. My burger consisted of a succulent medium-rare beef patty, creamy truffle aioli, house truffle cheese, and a truffle glaze. I couldn’t distinguish which truffle ingredients were what because all together they just looked like cheese. However, the flavors worked in the most harmonious way imaginable. The juices from the burger paired with the depth of the truffle and creaminess of the cheese is a treat to the palate. I was expecting the truffle flavor in the burger too be too rich for me to scarf down the whole thing quickly but boy was I wrong… The main concentration of the truffle flavor resides in the cheese but overall is not overwhelming and is very pleasurable. The crisp bun in conjunction with the juicy patty and savory sauces offered the most satisfactory combination of texture and flavor in each bite.

S: The table placement at Umami is so beautiful - it is the little things that make the restaurant's cozy yet classy atmosphere so pleasing. The menu itself has so much to offer as well, anything off of the menu is sure to be an experience the taste buds will remember.

K: The burger paired perfectly with the crunchy sweet potato fries which were seasoned with brown sugar and spices that gave it a great kick. I found that the Umami ketchup sauce also had hints of truffle oil in it, so that every dip definitely gives that signature savory flavor that is known as umami.

K: After enjoying such a trendy gourmet burger restaurant, I feel the need to be just as artsy. After all, you are what you eat.

S: So, it was still a bit rainy the day we chose to go to Umami Burger — but of course we were prepared. K is rockin a dress and flannel combo, dresses aren’t just for warmer days! Along with that, she’s paired a leather messenger bag, cute wedges and a clear umbrella. For myself, I’ve still got my black rainboots and top paired with relatively lighter components of the rest of my outfit. I love the contrast of the boots and top with my peach and cream cardigan, gray infinity scarf, and white jeans.  

K: If I had to match a TV trope to S’s outfit I would say she embodies the adorable girl next door in that cozy yet feminine cardigan. I love that the femme color palette utilizing the soft peach and white is juxtaposed by the edgier black elements in her boots, shirt, and umbrella keep the outfit balanced literally from head to toe. It’s a very classy combination. I didn’t feel like it was that cold that day so I opted for a t-shirt dress with a daintier floral print to mix with the larger plaid checks on my flannel. I got the flannel while thrifting in SF and have found it to be a surprisingly versatile item in my closet. It’s also a larger (I think mens’ size) fit so its comfortable as well. The combination of the two prints gave off a rustic vibe so I paired it with leather and suede accents like my bag and shoes.
S: Cozy and comfortable - yet chic. That's always something to go for, looking good while feeling comfortable. Everything in this outfit feels good to wear, and is super versatile. Everything is either warm, or flexible when pairing with other elements of an outfit.

K's Outfit:
Flannel- Thrifted
Dress- Urban Outfitters
Necklace- DIY
Messenger Bag- F21
Boot Wedges- Nine West 
Umbrella: Amazon

S's Outfit:
Cardigan: Forever 21
Scarf: Nordstrom BP
Top: Forever 21
Jeans: Ralph Lauren
Boots: Amazon
Umbrella: Target

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Rainy Days

The shower today not only helped quench the drought, but our need for some fun too. At the end of a stressful week, splashing around in puddles was some much needed release. Major props Emilie Ma for some of these gorgeous photos :)

Never thought that I would look so happy standing under a gutter but you know. 

 When the days aren't looking as bright, your boots might as well be. 

I love that this sweater dress allows me to feel chic while still staying warm. It's an under appreciated clothing item in my book. Also love being able to see through my umbrella. The necklace was super easy to make! Just connect a strand of chain with a jump ring and add a strand under to create this Y-shaped necklace. It was so easy and cheap but it goes well with many types of outfits :)

On K: 
Glasses- Eye Buy Direct
Jacket- Target 
Sweater dress- Uniqlo 
Necklace- DIY
Tights- Unknown
Boots- Nordstroms

It's hard to carry both an umbrella and a bag, but hey - I made do.

Scarves can keep you warm on the coldest of days, or in this case, add that perfect little finishing touch to complete your outfit.

The colors of my outfit are overall quite neutral, but the outfit does have little pops of color in just the right places. I love chiffon and floral prints as you can see by my shirt and scarf - you'll be seeing a lot more of that soon. 

On S: 
Shirt- F21
Denim Jacket- F21
Scarf- Target 
Bag- Gap
Belt- Therapy
Pants- Old Navy
Boots- Amazon

With much love,
K and S

Monday, February 2, 2015

Super Bowl Sunday

 "I love this because it's something very comfy and casual that I'd love to throw on" - AZ

boots-Steve Madden

Pro-tip: Don't fall for the $150 jean jacket hoodie (I'm looking at you Free People) Just layer a hoodie under a jean jacket or vest. Save yourself some extra $ for more snacks to watch the Superbowl with.

Lip Stain- Sephora Cream Lip Stain in Blackberry Sorbet
Floral Shirt- friend's 
Hoodie- Hollister
Jean Jacket-Tommy Hilfiger
 Yoga pants- Lululemon
High-tops- F21
Peace and Love,
AZ and KC