153 Akira in Wilmette

I am about to make a bold statement, but it is 100% appropriate: Akira is the best sushi I have ever had. And this is coming from a girl who has had a ton of sushi in her day. I love sushi and I could have it everyday it if was practical and I could afford it. Akira opened a couple of years ago in my hometown. It is in the space that the Buttery was in and only operated at night (the Buttery still operated in the day time). Akira was so popular that they shut the Buttery down. It is even listed as one of my favorite restaurants in Chicago.

Akira has the best specialty rolls that I have ever tasted bar none. They not only look beautiful but the fish is super fresh and the flavors melt in your mouth.I went there for dinner once during break but David and I decided that we wanted to go back for lunch. It took approximately no convincing.

David and I both got miso to start the meal off. David announced that it was “really good” and I have to concur. It was the best miso I have had in a long time. Incredibly flavorful.

I ordered two rolls: the Boston roll and the turtle roll. The Boston roll is a classic roll and the turtle roll is a specialty roll.

The Boston roll had salmon, lettuce, Japanese mayo, avocado, cucumber, and flying fish roe. All the ingredients were so fresh and delicious. The lettuce was especially crisp.

The turtle roll was next. It is my long standing favorite.

See how it looks like a turtle?!

Another glamor shot:

The turtle roll has fresh water eel and tempura crunch rolled outside with cooked shrimp topped with wasabi toblko, and finished with a creamy wasabi sauce. This is hands down, the perfect sushi roll. Between eel, shrimp, a little crunch and the creamy wasabi sauce this roll is literal perfection. Nothing will ever top this roll for me.

David ordered the Dragon roll which was a pretty sensational presentation.

Yep that’s right, the roll had a tail.

The dragon rolls is a California roll with unagi and avocado on top. David said that it was very pleasing.

Beyond the excellent sushi and presentation, Akira also has fantastic service. My parents are regulars and Kelly, the owner, always remember me (no small accomplishment since I probably only get to go to Akira once or twice a year).  She always greets us at the door with a smile on her face. As David and I were leaving she handed us a special treat.

David and I enjoyed this while we walked over to the Wilmette Theater.

Isn’t my hometown charming? You know what is even more charming? The fact that the movie ticket was only $6.25! Yes, you heard me. I love the Arclight but this was more than 50% less than the Arclight. I will take it! Also, on Monday’s they have free popcorn. So I got popcorn, soda, and a movie for $8. Can’t beat that deal.

David and I saw Black Swan and we thoroughly enjoyed it. I am not one for intense movies but I really liked this one. It wasn’t too scary and I thought both Mila Kunis and Natalie Portman did  a great job. I really liked the plot line and it kept me guessing. David and I were still talking about it the next day.

I’ve been on a bit of a movie spree. While I was home, in addition to Black Swan, I saw The Fighter, The Kings Speech, and The Social Network. I am a bit of an award season junkie so I had to gear up with holiday movies. All the movies were good but Colin Firths performance in the Kings Speech, Jesse Eisenberg in the Social Network, and Mark Wahlberg and Christian Bale in The Fighter were especially good. I will say that every time Wahlberg spoke in the Fighter I couldn’t help but think of the “Mark Wahlberg talks to animals” sketch on SNL. Am I the only one? Also I thought the sisters in The Fighter were very entertaining.

Have you seen any movies over the holiday? What did you see and how did you like it? I still have a couple I want to see but am always looking for a good rec!

It’s here!

Today was a fantastic day!

First of all, I had an awesome breakfast. Oatmeal with peanut butter, cinnamon, and honey.

Later today in Wills and Trusts Professor Goodman gave us candy because it’s “that crappy time in the semester before finals and after law school is a fun novelty”. Apparently, he could “see our fatigue in our faces” so he gave our whole class candy!

Sweet. That makes the California Probate Code so much more interesting.

The best surprise of the day came when I got home from school.

For those that don’t know, Flour is an amazing bakery in Boston. I frequented Flour while I was in college and they literally have the best sandwiches, baked goods, and sticky bun on the planet. If I had one meal left I would have flour. In fact, the last time I was in Boston, I had an entire day where I ONLY ate Flour.

 

Doughnuts that are featured on weekends ONLY at Flour in Boston

 

Last summer I discovered that Joanna Chang, the owner of Flour and co-owner of Meyers + Chang, was coming out with a cookbook! I obviously got in the pre-order line right away and today it finally came!

I was so excited when I opened up the cookbook. Literally, all of my favorite treats were represented!

Reading the pages of this book was like going home. This food brings up so many memories. When I worked at the State House I always got a sticky bun on my way to work on Mondays. The week before I moved to LA my mom and I enjoyed breakfast there everyday. Some special Sundays I would go to Flour, read the paper, and enjoy their stuffed doughnut. I watched President Obama’s inauguration with a Flour granola bar. There have been numerous trips with my friends Brea and Carolyn. And for every trip with Carolyn there has been a moment where she and I have looked at each other and just known we were going to have to split a raspberry bar.

Food is love and having a bit of Flour in LA means a lot to me. I was actually moderately emotional flipping though the pages. I was homesick but overjoyed that I have all the recipes. Obviously I am breaking into the book tonight! I have a feeling this will end up being my Julie/Julia. Although it might take me longer than a year, I am going to cook everything at some point.

Off to my kitchen!

Study Night

Nothing goes with hours upon hours of reading like salted caramel macaroons from Tavern.

Last weekend was so busy I had no time to read ahead. Normally, I work ahead on the weekends so on Monday and Tuesday I only have to read half of an assignment. Reading for law school is hard. Generally assignments will only be 15 to 20 pages but they will be dense, the court will not spell out why it did what it did and it will take longer than an hour to read. Suddenly you’ve been reading for hours. Your head is spinning and attention waning. After reading one paragraph you realize that you have no idea what the court was saying and you have to read it over and over again. Obviously after reading from 3 til almost 6 I needed a change of scenery. Since my birthday dinner a month ago I have wanted to go back to Tavern and sample their goodies without the impediment of stomach flu. I was not disappointed.

Decaf Iced Non Fat Latte, the perfect thing to accompany a salted caramel macaroon. I think the salted caramel macaroon is my new favorite thing of all time. It melts in your mouth, is salty and the caramel is rich. You can’t have just one.

The food at Tavern is some of the best I’ve had in LA. The Larder, which is next to the restaurant and bar, is light and airy. There was no one around at 6 when I arrived. It gave me the final push I needed to get through the reading I had to do. I will be back to the Larder soon, perhaps to sample their lunch menu!