The 52 Project: July 28

Brooklyn_Wedding

^^ A shot of the gorgeous room from the wedding we attended on Saturday at El Caribe Country Club in Brooklyn. The cocktail hour had no less than 10 stations with fresh cheeses and meats, pastas, veggies, seafood and much more. The entree menu offered six meal options and the Venetian hour has about a dozen dessert tables with everything from popcorn, cookies, snow cones and fondue to omelets, a sundae bar, cotton candy and a cannoli table.  This, my friends, is how the Italians in Brooklyn celebrate a marriage, and I’m happy to be a part of it 😉

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Back in the (Different) Borough: A Night in Carroll Gardens & Gowanus

Hi friends,

This past Saturday Chris and I met up with some friends in their neck of the woods — Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn — for some whiskey tasting at Char No. 4, followed by some shuffleboard at the new Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club in Gowanus.

So the whiskey first. Char No. 4 is this cute little whiskey bar and restaurant. According to the site:

“The name refers to the practice of aging bourbon in charred new oak barrels, which gives bourbon its characteristic sweet, caramelized flavors and its beautiful amber hue. Char No. 4 features over 150 American whiskeys and serves a menu of American fare with a focus on smoked meat. The American whiskeys are augmented by an extensive list of whiskeys from Europe and beyond as well as a selection of all-bourbon cocktails.”

You can check their events page for updates on their whiskey tastings (they also have soft shell crab Wednesdays in June, Barbecue nights in July and Rye revival classes, among others).

Whiskey_Tasting

Our whiskey class was about $40 per person, and it included four different types of whiskeys (see above), as well as three different appetizers (deviled eggs, a delicious fried cheese and some sort of meat nugget which I obviously couldn’t eat).

So I’ll let you in on a little secret — I don’t particularly love whiskey 😉 And having a tasting didn’t really change that. But it was fun to do it, and it was really interesting to learn about the history and how it’s made and all that. Overall, I would highly recommend this little outing — it’s perfect for group get togethers and dates alike.

After loading up on whiskey we took the short walk from Carroll Gardens over the Gowanus Canal into Gowanus, an up-and-coming Brooklyn neighborhood with not too much going on — except for this brand new Royal Palms Shuffleboard bar. It literally opened about 3 weeks ago, which is why the owner still cares enough at this point to come outside and address the growing line of would-be patrons. They don’t want a line simply to make the place “look cool,” he assured us. It’s just that the fire department says they’re only allowed to have 300 people inside at one time — and he’s really afraid of the fire department.

We only waited about 10 minutes though, and inside was a gamers dream. Shuffleboard (at a price of $40 per hour — which isn’t too bad when split between four people), Connect Four, cards and other games await, along with a seafood food truck, cozy cabanas and beer.

And not for nothing, but this place is a huge warehouse, and the 300 people or less fire code keeps it super airy and spacious, meaning there was absolutely no bumping into people or sloppiness, no long lines at the women’s restroom — basically just the way I like my bars!

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^^ We plopped ourselves at a shuffleboard-side table and played cards and
drank some beer while waiting for our turn to play shuffleboard.
Maybe the popularity of this place will die down eventually, but for now,
in its newness splendor, it took us about 2.5 hours to get to our turn.

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^^ Shuffleboard courts run the length of the middle of the warehouse. So fun to watch!

I wasn’t sure we’d be able to wait long enough to finally get to play, but we occupied our time with the seafood food truck, as well.

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Lobster_Roll

^^We grabbed a lobster roll, shrimp role, cole slaw and some bags of chips
from the Red Hook Lobster food truck (which is located inside the bar).
Holy cow they were so. delicious! 

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After stuffing our faces with seafood and playing cards for 2.5 hours, we finally had our shot at shuffleboard.

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^^ The owner came over to give us the rules ahead of playing.
We played boys against girls, and although the boys tried to
hide the evidence, this happened …

We_Win
 ^^ Ummm, 43 – 96 = the girls beating the boys — awahooo!!!

I mean, it would have been an awesome night without the win … but it certainly didn’t hurt 😉

Bis bald, friends! If you happen to be in the area, get thee to Char No. 4 for some whiskey and to the Royal Palms for some shuffleboard afterwards. It makes for a lovely Saturday night.

Back in the Borough: A Holiday Hoedown at the Brooklyn Brewery

Hi friends,

I was lucky enough to get invited by a friend to the Riverhead/Penguin book publishing holiday party at the Brooklyn Brewery last night. While it’s kind of a trek to get there from where we live on the Upper East Side (two subway trains and about 15 minutes of walking), it’s totally worth it when you get there.

Bloomingdales^^ Bloomingdales, putting on a show for me on my walk to the subway.

Chrysler Building^^ A faraway Chrysler Building, nestled between two shining snowflakes and an Aldo.

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photo 5^^ The Gorilla Cheese NYC food truck was there! I was
obsessed with them when Chris and I used to watch The Great Food Truck Race!

photo 6^^ This was the first time I’d seen a 3-D printer in real life. OMG. How. Friggin’. Cool!
They were giving away those tiny penguins next to the printer, which were being made
in that 3-D printer. From thin air. Technology. I swear.

photo 7^^You can’t really tell from this photo, but this is a teeny, tiny cup of beer.
That’s what happens when you order the beer with the highest level of
alcoholic content from the menu. Hehehe. Happy holidays!

The Brewery is located in a section of Brooklyn known as Williamsburg, although the area immediately surrounding the brewery itself is pretty industry and, well, just not that pretty. Other parts of Williamsburg are super cute, though, and worth a trip out there if you’ve got some time to spare.

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photo 13^^ That guy with the red feather in his cap was entertaining subway riders by playing
Christmas carols with his guitar. Oh how I love this time of year.

And these are just a couple shots I took on my walk back home through our neighborhood. Because, you know, you can never have too many holiday shots.

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photo 15^^ Passing by the Corner Bakery late at night on my way home and smelling all
the deliciousness they’re cooking up inside for the next day is one of my favorite pastimes.

photo 16^^ Even my gym has contributed to the holiday madness.

Tonight Chris and I are off to The Monkey Bar for dinner and drinks, which I’ve been dying to try out for a while now. I’ll let ya’ll know how it goes!

Bis bald, friends!

Back in the (Different) Borough: A Weekend Morning Stroll Through DUMBO

HI friends,

I hope your weekend’s going well! I met up with an old friend of mine from junior high this morning in DUMBO (an acronym for the Brooklyn neighborhood that stands for “Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass”) to help her look for wedding dresses. (SQUEEEE!!!)

Anyway, DUMBO. It’s the cutest area—even when the weather is crappy, which it was this morning. I wanted to share some photos of the stroll we took after shopping here:

^^This cute little pooch was patiently waiting for his owner to come out of that store. I couldn't resist taking a photo.
^^This cute little pooch was patiently waiting for his owner to come out of that store. I couldn’t resist taking a photo.
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^^The Bride!!
^^Hello Brooklyn Bridge!
^^Hello Brooklyn Bridge!
^^The carousel at the Brooklyn Bridge Park.
^^The carousel at the Brooklyn Bridge Park.
^^We're always so serious.
^^We’re always so serious.

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^^This photo wall extends along the length of the park and has some great artwork.
^^This photo wall extends along the length of the park and has some great artwork.
^^Stolen from Istagram, thank you very much.
^^Stolen from Istagram, thank you very much.

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^^From the photo wall--look at this little munchkin!
^^From the photo wall–look at this little munchkin!
^^These kayakers were determined, despite the fact that it was raining pretty heavily at this point.
^^These kayakers were determined, despite the fact that it was raining pretty heavily at this point.

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^^If you squint REALLY hard, you can see the Statue of Liberty in the middle. I can't wait to go back on a clear day and take my good camera.
^^If you squint REALLY hard, you can see the Statue of Liberty in the middle. I can’t wait to go back on a clear day and take my good camera.
^^All of my favorite mommy bloggers have been talking about the "the pop-up pool in Brooklyn." Well today, I finally got to see it!
^^All of my favorite mommy bloggers have been talking about the “the pop-up pool in Brooklyn.” Well today, I finally got to see it!

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And that’s DUMBO! I’d recommend a trip to that area if you’re visiting Manhattan–it’s got really spectacular views of the city, and a lot of great restaurants. It was just a short walk from there to Brooklyn Heights, where we walked along the famous Montague Street and ate breakfast at the Heights Cafe. (The Portobello Omelet is seriously delish! I’ve definitely had better Bloody Mary’s in my life, though.)

Bis bald, friends! Happy weekend!