Last week, my weekend (kind of) started on Wednesday.
My friend/coworker, Keisha, talked me in to attending a (social)networking event at Solas, on Glenwood South, where her cousin was performing with his hip-hop group. Although it was something I wouldn’t have gone to on my own, I was glad she convinced me, because it ended up being a blast! The bartender was a heavy pour and I loved the sound of a live band with a talented rapper singing about topics other than money&hoes.
We finished up the night on a more relaxed note with drinks next door at C. Grace, a 1920’s style underground lounge with delicious cocktails and live jazz music. With such a unique atmosphere, C. Grace is on my list of Top 10 places to have a drink in Raleigh.
Thursday was my day off, which typically entails running errands, cleaning my apartment, and doing laundry. This Thursday, however, finished on a much more exciting note as it was the night of the Revolver Boutique Paper Dolls fashion party! I love any excuse to dress up and seeing as this is my #1 local boutique (and where I worked for three years) I felt compelled to go all out with my ensemble.
(I hate that I didn’t get a better picture of my outfit, but that’s not important.)
The Paper Dolls party was a celebration of all art forms. There were students from NCSU’s College of Textiles, such as Kendall Pierce and Glenna Teague, presenting their one-of-a-kind pieces, as well as jewelry designer Mollie Earls with her quirky necklaces and earrings made of found objects and gemstones.
There was a DJ, drinks, and amazing artwork by Patrick Shanahan (who co-hosted the event with Revolver owner Liz Johnson). All-in-all it was an awesome night and I mingled with so many incredibly talented people.
(L-R: Mollie Earls, Liz Johnson, and myself. Photo taken by the fabulous Jillian Clark)
Later that evening, as my stomach was talking to me, I remembered that I had been craving the delicious dishes at Kimbap all week. I attempted to get a friend to join me for dinner, but when no one was available I told myself I could be content eating alone. It may sound weird, but I’ve never felt comfortable being out in public by myself. I either need a friend at my side or an iPhone in my hands. I took the opportunity to really savor my meal and my environment. Kimbap is a cute Korean restaurant in Seaboard Station that serves up contemporary takes on traditional Korean food, all made with fresh local ingredients. That evening I ordered the japchae and veggie mandu, with a side of prosecco. It was refreshing to enjoy the moment, rather than feel compelled to converse. I was the only patron inside, and seated at the bar I was able to watch as the staff cooked and interacted with each other. The owner herself even checked on how my meal was (and when I asked if the local greens in the japchae were collards she confirmed and we both commented on the southern flavor it gave to the plate.)
As I was finishing my meal, a girl came in to get dinner to-go. I gave my recommendation, which led us to chatting for a while. She is a NCSU student and fashion photographer who just started working at the coffee shop that recently opened up next to Kimbap. Needless to say, we bonded instantly. Then she gave me a heads-up that the next morning Citrix would be buying everyone’s coffee at BREW. I went ahead and made plans to stop by on my way to work.
So the next morning at 9am I went over to BREW. Surprisingly it wasn’t as crowded as I expected. I ordered the Nitro Cold Brew & yogurt with homemade granola. The coffee, made using a special technique, was delivered immediately. Now, I’m the type of girl who likes their coffee on the sweeter side, but I refrained from adding anything to this cold brew before I tasted it. One sip and I was sold. Wonderfully chilled with a nice nutty flavor, it didn’t need a thing (but I added a packet of stevia for a little sweetness). The yogurt was simple and delicious. It was the perfect way to start my morning.
Thank you Citrix!
I was such a fan of my Friday morning breakfast, that I went back for more on Saturday. This time, I tried their chai latte (with a shot of espresso) and ordered the pimento cheese board with crostini from Yellow Dog.
Saturday was a real treat, as my BFF who now lives in VT came to visit her hometown. Suzy is the fabulous founder of The Factory NC and currently works for Burton Snowboards. We started our night at Garland for fantastic food and friendly faces. Owned by part of the team who runs Kings/Neptunes, Garland is an Asian fusion restaurant with the coolest atmosphere. I started with a signature cocktail before we decided on three small plats to share. We ordered the bhel puri, cauliflower 65, and the moroccan “hummus” (you simply must try them). We were so happy and full by the end of it!
Afterwards, we toured around downtown, people watching and running into people we know. We found our way to Bittersweet, a new desert/cocktail restaurant I’ve been dying to visit. We ended the evening perfectly with a glass of cava and a shared desert which was essentially a scoop of vanilla ice cream with a shot of espresso poured over top.
I have to admit, this was the best series of days I’ve had in a while. It is such a joy to be able to go out, meet new people, and make new experiences.