Another Frisco Trip

Two weeks ago Joe and I headed up to San Fran for another trip to the Bay. This was my 5th time to San Francisco. Every time I go I fall more in love with the city.

This trip was based around our tickets to the 49ers vs. Packers game on Sunday but we decided to extend our trip to be Thursday until Monday. I was super happy about that because it meant I got to spend more time with Chrissy (one of my favorite law school people ever) and got to spend time with my cousin Mary who I haven’t seen in nearly 1 year.

Chrissy and I during 1L when we were young, innocent, and I experimented with bangs. #NeverAgain

We drove up on Thursday arriving in time to catch the Broncos vs. Ravens game (booo Ravens) at a bar. The bar was quiet and full of what seem to be mostly regulars. I love how Lagunitas is on tap at almost every bar in SF.

We also sat next to a very drunk man who told my boyfriend that he is blessed because he has a girl friend who loves football. Obviously, I will never let him forget it.

Thursday night we eventually got to Chrissy’s apartment which is really like a very nice hotel. There is a hot tub and a pool which needed to be taken advantage of. We also spent plenty of time with Penny. Penny is adorable but secretly a mischievous demon destroyer who kept putting the moves on Joe.

Penny snuggles with everyone.

Friday we went on a run and then headed over to Berkeley to see Mary. She took us to Sliver Pizza which was an amazing choice. They only have one pizza available per day. On that day the pizza was Roasted Yukon Gold Potatoes, Fresh Corn, Mozzarella, Bulgarian Feta Cheese, Mexican Key Limes, Cilantro Garlic Olive Oil. I also had an IPA.

Feast your eyes.

The pizza was amazing. I know that Cheeseboard corners the good pizza market in Berkeley but this was damn good. I loved the potatoes and sweet corn but the hint of cilantro stole my heart. After we walked around Berkeley with my cousin and got some delicious ice cream because it was vacation.

Saturday’s major food highlights included a trip to the farmers market at the Ferry Building where I was reunited with my favorite blue bottle coffee.

 

While I waited in line at Blue Bottle Joe went over to Strauss Creamery for milkshakes. We each got our own because I cannot control myself and I would have drank the entire milk shake before he had a sip otherwise.

Saturday was hot and we spent the entire day at Chrissy’s rooftop pool.

For dinner the girls went to a small hole in the wall Italian restaurant called Café Sport. I loved the vibe of the restaurant. There were things hung on every inch of the wall which made the booths feel very private.

I don’t remember exactly what we had. I do know we ate a ton of garlic bread, pasta with beef sauce and ravioli.

After we saw Moonrise Kingdom in the park and then crashed after watching numerous episodes of revenge. Party animals.

The highlight of the weekend was Sunday and the Packers vs. 49ers game. I have a deep dislike of the Packers as a native Chicagoan and was very excited to be at the 49ers season opener. We tailgated with burgers and beer in the parking lot before the game.

The game was exciting, probably the most exciting NFL game I’ve been to. The game moved quickly and it was close until the end.

It was great to go to a game where every down felt like it was do or die. The game was very loaded for the Packers because we knocked them out of the playoffs last year and they came to play. The 9ers ended up prevailing and a fun time was had by all.

Fun Fact: an elderly grandmother Packers fan flipped off one of the members of our group at one point. Oh, Green Bay.

We headed back Monday. I love San Francisco. San Fran is probably the only place I would consider moving outside of LA and I was so happy to explore it with Joe and spend quality time with Chrissy. I always eat well there and I am so excited to go back.

I have my marathon in Long Beach in 5 days. I am planning on posting before then. Don’t worry everyone who gave me a hard time for not blogging enough over the weekend 🙂

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The best of the rest

So, over three months after it ended, I am finally wrapping up my posts from my California post-bar road trip with my Dad. I don’t have enough for a single post for each meal but I thought I would highlight the best food I sampled on my trip.

The first major stand out of the trip was this grilled cheese sandwich I ate at a tiny restaurant across the street from the entrance to Hearst Castle. The restaurant was a window that you walk up to. They were advertising grilled cheese on brioche so it was a no brainer. I was expecting a run of the mill grilled cheese but what I got was so much more:

Yes, that is oozing white and yellow cheddar cheese with avocado and bacon. I love the huge chunks of creamy avocado and the thick and crispy bacon. The bread was obviously grilled with butter.

The bacon could not be contained.

Crispy and perfect!

The shop also had a great selection of bottled sodas including these more off beat selections:

As a native Midwesterner I was drawn to the sweet corn soda but I restrained myself from actually purchasing it.

The next notable meal that has yet to see the blog is my lunch at Chez Panisse. Yes, that Chez Panisse.

Lunch at Chez Panisse was a big surprise for me. My parents made the reservation far in advance. For those that are not familiar, Chez Panisse is kind of a big deal. The Berkeley restaurant was started by Alice Waters in 1971. Alice is a pioneer of the local, seasonal and sustainable food movement. As a frequent farmer’s market patron and general fan of the local food movement, I was very excited to have the opportunity to dine in her restaurant.

I did not take that many photos when I was there. To be honest, I didn’t want to be “that blogger girl” with her camera out. My dad, my cousin Mary and I ate a three course meal and left no bite behind. The dining room was warm and inviting, like I was sitting down at a fabulous yet homey dinner party.

I did snag a photo of the amazing dessert I ordered:

Peach Tart with Blackberries and Blackberry ice cream. It was complete and total perfection. I actually do not have words to describe it. Suffice to say, if you ever have the opportunity to eat at Chez Panisse you should hop on it. Side note: for the past month I’ve been playing around in my kitchen with a version of Alice’s simple apple tart and it will be posted on the blog eventually. Promise.

While in SF I also dragged my Father along to the Saturday farmer’s market at the Ferry Building aka the greatest farmers market in existence.

I went to my favorite stand and got the pork sandwich with arugula and caramelized onions for breakfast at 8 am.

So much spicy and crispy arugula!

Gooood morning indeed!

After eating around San Francisco we headed into wine country and the food continued to be delicious.

Do you want to know what I love about Healdsburg? It was 60 degrees in the morning and around 85 during the day. This means that I was able to bundle up a bit and get a warm latte in the morning and then got to enjoy sunshine and warmth in the afternoon.

I insisted on more than one trip to Flying Goat Coffee.

Love.

No photos came out of the first meal we had in Healdsburg but we ate at a great restaurant that was recommended by family friends called Baci. Baci was notable because I had short rib ravioli. It was amazing. Does it get better than one of my favorite kinds of meat wrapped in homemade pasta? No. The answer is no.

Again, at the recommendation of friends we went wine tasting at several vineyards and tasting rooms. Our family friends are serious wine country veterans and gave several great recommendations in the Dry Creek Valley. First we went to the Williamson Vineyard tasting room off the Healdsburg Square. I splurged with some of my law school graduation money and bought a delicious and expensive Cabernet which I am saving for a special occasion.

Next we went to the Talty Vineyard. The tasting room was not supposed to be open when we were there but they opened up just for us to check it out. Talty exclusively produces Zinfandel. I drink red wine almost exclusively and I really like the spiciness of the Zins. The owner of the Talty Winery was so nice and took time with us even though he was not supposed to be open. I highly recommend checking it out if you ever end up in that region.

After we grabbed a quick bite at a pizza restaurant. I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the restaurant but the pizza was something to behold.

After the pizza we went to the Teldeschi winery also in the Dry Creek Region. Again, great wine, nice people. I ended up taking home a Zinfandel and a Petite Syrah. Overall, it was a great haul!

My absolute favorite meal in Healdsburg was at Scopa. We barely got in because I forgot to make a reservation (whoops). Once we started eating even my Dad conceded that the food was worth the wait.

To start I had an arugula salad with grilled peaches.

This photo isn’t the best but the peaches were fantastic. The warm peaches mixed with the spicy, crisp arugula. I ate many, many peaches on this trip because they were in season at the time. This is probably my favorite way to eat peaches. They’re just so good when they’re grilled.

For the main course I had homemade ravioli. I can’t remember exactly what it was stuffed with but it was one of the best plates of ravioli I have ever been served bar none.

The photo doesn’t do it justice but I had to give Scopa a shout out. The sauce had rich flavoring but was light at the same time. Seriously, anytime you get anywhere near wine country you need to check out Scopa. The menu is all locally sourced and seasonal.

Oh and we ate this for dessert. Because I’ve irresponsibly waited 3 months to write this post I cannot for the life of me remember what it is (Dad- do you remember?) but I remember eating every last bite and wanting more.

I mean, giant slab of homemade whipped cream. So tasty looking, amiright?

Finally, on the way back to LA my Dad generously offered to drive through Santa Barbara to hit a bakery I had eyeballed on our first pass through. I had not been able to get a treat from said bakery because I had a nasty bout of food poisoning on my birthday. While I wanted a post birthday treat I didn’t feel like it was the right time to test my belly with more than my morning coffee. I realize I was probably gambling putting coffee in my system and I didn’t want to push it.

However, on the second trip I was able to successfully enjoy some New York Olive Oil Cake from Our Daily Bread Bakery in Santa Barbara.

I really like olive oil cake in general. I find that the olive oil makes the cake more spongy and moist than usual. I also love the flavor of olive oil. You can taste a hint of olive oil in the cake but overall the cake itself isn’t very rich. Perfect end of the trip treat!

So that does it for my updates from my road trip. I am so fortunate that my Mom planned this amazing trip for my Dad and I. While my Dad did give the occasional side eye as I marched him from food location to food location, I’m glad that I had a travel companion who wanted to eat as much good food as I did.

San Francisco Treats

Oh kids. Buckle up for an insane post. I have been to the promise land (San Francisco) and the food is good!

Why did I go to San Francisco? Well, normally I wouldn’t go out of town once during a semester let alone twice, two weeks in a row. Last week, after coming back from Chicago, I made the decision to go to SF this weekend. My law school friend Chrissy has been living in SF externing and my college roommate and treat soul mate Carolyn was also going to be in town to run the Nike Women’s 1/2 Marathon. When another friend agreed to carpool it became clear that this trip was meant to be.

I drove up Friday, checked in with friends in Berkeley and went to a pot luck in the city. It was an awesome night and there are no photos.

Except this one:

Saturday, however, I made up for it. Chrissy and Kelly brought me to the San Francisco Farmer’s Market at the Ferry Building.

It was love at first sight.

I even tried a new variety of apple: Hawaiian apples! It was sweet and crisp. In addition to the regular farm stand items they also had prepared food and the venders inside the Ferry Building.

Chrissy started me off with what was probably the greatest thing I’d ever eaten (Note that I said that statement a lot yesterday).

The first item we ripped into at 10:30 was this amahzing Porchetta sandwich with arugula from Roli Roti. The three of us split the sandwich and it was far and away the best pork sandwich I’ve ever consumed.

Crunchy, saucy, spicy perfection. We all split it and it was so so so so amazing. I would have this weekly if I lived nearby.

Then we moved to another stand, El Porteno.

First we got an empanada. I chose cheese and caramelized onion and again, we split it.

Again, cheesy perfection. I loved it and couldn’t get enough.

Chrissy they said that the dolce de leche cookie looked really good and maybe we should split it. This is why I’m friends with Chrissy. Obviously.

This was a delicious buttery cookie with dolce de leche caramel in the middle. It was as good as it looks.

Once inside I made sure to make a pit stop at Blue Bottle Coffee.

I’ve had this place on my radar for a while and, as a coffee aficionado, I couldn’t wait to check it out. The wait was long but I knew I had to try this coffee so I persevered and stayed in line. It was so worth it.

Smoothest latte of my life. Love this and if I lived in San Francisco I would probably quit Starbucks and Coffee Bean cold turkey and only drink this. I know that is an extreme statement but it’s true!

After the Farmer’s Market I said goodbye to Chrissy and Kelly for a while and I went on a walk through San Francisco to meet Carolyn at, where else, a bakery.

When I travel I really like to wander the city I’m, absorb the spirit and stumble upon new things. The walk to the bakery was three miles so I got to see a lot of the city everything from the Mission to city hall to the tenderloin which is famous for crime, drug use, and Hastings law school.

Streetcars.

City Hall. This building reminded me of Milk and made me want to run for office so badly it’s not even funny.

Trees near city hall.

Houses in the Mission.

After a long walk I made it to my destination, Tartine Bakery.

Tartine came heavily recommended from several people and Carolyn had already made one trip there so I knew I was in for some delicious eats.

I hopped in line and salivated at everything in the case.

Carolyn had already warned me about the croque monsieur and I knew that in addition to treats I HAD to order it.

I was not disappointed.

This may be one of the best things I’ve ever had to eat. A bold proclamation but I feel confident making it.

This sandwich is an open face sandwich with béchamel, gruyere, thyme and pepper. I want another right now so badly.

Oh, and it was topped with heirloom tomatoes.

Carolyn soon joined me and we ate our treats.

First I had a chocolate walnut cookie. Obviously, it was delicious.

We also got some delicious macaroons.

How adorable is it?

We decided, however, to take the treat up another notch.

Clearly, Carolyn and I sniffed out soft serve ice cream like a couple of bloodhounds. It was from Bi-Rite creamery across the street from Tartine.

This is good.

But this….

Is even better.

We sat down in Dolores Park, got a second hand weed high and ate our treats.

Pure excitement.

After treats we stumbled upon $2.50 sangria, had a drink and then made our way back to Chrissy and Kelly’s for dinner.

But first we had a friend photo shoot.

I love everything about this.

Then we went to Slanted Door for appetizer and drinks with Chrissy and Kelly…

And Osha for a pre race dinner for Carolyn. We had Thai food. I enjoyed dinner, my friends and was too busy having fun to take pictures. Even though there aren’t words I promise it was delicious. After dinner I said bye to Carolyn, foam rolled my legs.

Chrissy and I took her dog Penny on a long walk through Chinatown to North Beach, areas of the city I hadn’t seen. On the way home we were part of a police chase! You can read about our police chase here. Literally, we were standing on a corner one moment and behind a police line the next!

This morning I woke up and had to leave pretty early. I took one final spin through the Ferry Building this morning. I helped myself to another Blue Bottle Coffee and went to Il Can Rosso for breakfast.

I almost never order eggs but something told me to get the slow scrambled eggs with crescenza, chives, and garlic crostini.

I know, I know I keep saying this but these eggs are the best eggs I’ve ever had. They were drippy, cheesy and chivey plus the bread was fantastically toasted and added a bit of crunch.

Looking at this picture, all I want to do is lick my computer screen.

Don’t you?

I had no problems polishing this off.

And with that my first trip to San Francisco was a wrap! I wish I could have stayed longer and seen more but it was a great first trip to San Francisco. I foresee many more trips north in my future. I’m off to face plant in my bed because I have to go back to school tomorrow. All good things, like all good dishes, have to come to an end.

Vanilla Bean Pound Cake with Coffee Reduction and Pumpkin Ice Cream

As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemakers Program I was lucky enough to receive two pounds of Godiva Coffee’s two new seasonal flavors: Pumpkin Spice and Caramel Pecan Bark.

While I love coffee, I’m not a huge fan of flavored coffee. What can I say? I love bitter things. I decided the best way for me to enjoy the coffee wasn’t simply brewing it, but placing it in the context of a fall dessert. I decided to make a variation of Orange Pound Cake and top it with a strong coffee reduction.

Ingredients

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1 1/2 cup flour

1 cup granulated sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

5 large eggs, room temperature

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 vanilla bean, split and the insides removed

3 tablespoons coffee, I used Godiva Coffee Carmel Pecan Bark flavor

2 scoops seasonal ice cream, I used Trader Joes Pumpkin Ice Cream

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350. I started by combining the sugar and butter. Then I beat the sugar and butter for 8 mins until it was very fluffy. I am a major proponent of beating butter and sugar for a minimum of 8 mins, it tastes so divine.

Yes, I may have had a few bites of this while watching the Emmy pre show last weekend. Can you blame me?

Then I added the vanilla extract with a spatula and mixed with a spatula. Then I gradually beat in the eggs using a hand held mixer.

Then I added the salt and gradually added the flour. After adding the flour I added the insides of the vanilla bean. I split the bean with a knife and scraped out the insides. I made sure it was well mixed with the spatula.

I buttered a loaf pan and poured the batter in.

I baked for 60 mins.

While the pound cake was baking I got cracking on the coffee reduction. To start, I brewed 3 tablespoons of coffee in my French press, using 1 1/4 cups water.

You can use whatever brewing method you like. I only have a French press (I’m a bit obsessed with it actually) because personally, I think it brews better coffee. It’s mostly important that the coffee is a little stronger than usual.

Then I poured the coffee into a pot and set the heat on low to simmer the coffee.

It’s important not to let the coffee burn. I kept an eye on it until the coffee had reduced by half.

I check it by pouring it into my liquid measuring cup.

Reduced by over half: success!

I put the reduction aside to cool and took the pound cake out of the oven after it finished cooking and let it cool.

When I was ready to consume I sliced the pound cake, topped with my favorite fall ice cream (Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Ice Cream) and drizzled the coffee reduction over it.

Fantastic! The coffee was very flavorful and the scent was pretty intoxicating. I still probably wouldn’t drink this plain because of my personal preference for non flavored coffee but the scent was delicious. I also loved how the coffee was absorbed in the pound cake. Typically I add cinnamon or something to the pumpkin ice cream because I love adding things to pumpkin ice cream generally. I actually think I liked the addition of the coffee reduction more. The coffee reduction makes the flavor of the coffee even stronger and the strong flavor played well off of the pound cake and the ice cream.

I spent the rest of the week adding the coffee reduction to things like ice cream and muesli. Overall, I really liked Godiva Coffee for baking purposes and I will probably use it again. Indulgent and delicious for Fall!

Boston Day 2: coffee, manicures and zumba

After an action packed first day in Boston I was so relieved to be able to sleep in on Thursday. Soon after waking I reported for bridal party duty. The nearest train stop to the bride’s house is actually Harvard.

I have always enjoyed Harvard Square. There are some great restaurants, coffee shops, shopping and bars to peruse while in the area. I personally have always liked Harvard Square. It has a kind of hippy vibe, like a less intense version of Venice.

After bridal duty I checked into some of my favorite spots.

Like Crema for coffee.

Crema is an adorable and delicious café in Harvard Square. It is independently owned and if you haven’t checked it out yet and you live in Boston then you should! I ordered a non fat, iced latte.

Don’t get me wrong. I have nothing against Starbucks but this really is better. I think you can taste the difference.

Then I decided to shop at the Harvard outpost of my favorite consignment store, Second Time Around.

Second Time Around has a great selection of clothing but I wasn’t able to find anything at this location (remember I got the $15 never been worn Tom’s the day before).

I did see these, a sure sign that you are back in Boston:

Don’t worry, no Lilly Pulitzer for me. This style would never fly in LA. Don’t get me wrong: I love prep but this is a bit too much.

I also restrained myself from buying a hot pink Vineyard Vines Blazer. I called my Mom and she talked me off the ledge. That is why God invented Mom’s, to stop you from making rash fashion choices.

Then I got a manicure so I would be wedding ready (clearly, it was also time for more caffeine).

Before I got on the T to go back to Carolyn’s I decided to hit my favorite Boston cup cake spot: Sweet.

Sweet didn’t open this location until after I left Boston but I frequented the Back Bay location since it opened a few years ago. They have many delicious flavors, were recently named “best cupcake” by Improper Bostonian. They pretty much lead the cup cake trend in Boston and we all know I take my cup cakes seriously. Plus, it’s adorable inside.

After spilling my life story to the women behind the counter (“I went to college here, and moved to LA, and went to the Back Bay location, and I write a food blog and I love Susie Cakes” seriously I’m the freak show) I looked over the display cases for the perfect cake.

Facebook cupcake = sure sign that you’re in Harvard Square:

After narrowing down all of the options I settled on the lemon and raspberry cupcake.

The cake was lemon with raspberry jam filling and a cream cheese based frosting. You couldn’t really taste the cream cheese; it tasted more vanilla-lemoney. This was probably the best cupcake I’ve ever had from Sweet. The frosting wasn’t too sweet and the lemon and raspberry flowed together effortlessly. Raspberry and lemon might be one of my favorite fruit flavor combos ever.

I also bought a “frosting shot” for 50 cents. I enjoyed it on the way to the T. I knew that the cupcake had a cream cheese based frosting and I was really craving some butter cream.

Is this not the best concept ever? I think it is!

After cupcakes I clearly needed to workout. Carolyn invited me to go to Zumba with her. I had never tried Zumba before but I’ve read all about it in the blog world. I was pretty sure I would be totally lost for the entire class and I went into it expecting to sweat and just jump around to compensate for having no clue what I was doing. Overall, I LOVED ZUMBA! I seriously am going to work this in as cross training. UCLA does offer classes and I need to make it a priority after classes start again. Zumba is a hip hop and Latin based dance class. Seriously, it’s socially appropriate to booty pop; I am so there! The class was intense but not too challenging. Even though I was sweating buckets I didn’t feel like I was working out. It was epic.

Afterwards we enjoyed wine in a public square near Carolyn’s house. It was a perfect vacation night!

What would be your perfect vacation night? Drinking wine with friends, having fun and laughing my tush off is pretty much perfection in my book.

The Griddle

Here is the thing about law school finals: they last for over 2 weeks. Don’t get me wrong, I need all that time to study but after a week of working in near isolation I needed a breakfast/vent session with a good friend. Danielle and I decided to hit The Griddle in West Hollywood for giant pancakes and a catch up sesh (which included statements such as “that was HARDLY discussed in the class so why did he test us on it?!”, “8:15 AM for a 4.5 hour final?! That is a violation of my Civil Rights!”).

I’ve been to The Griddle once before, pre-blog when I had only been in LA for about two weeks, and I’ve wanted to go back ever since so I was excited when Danielle suggested it.

Thing that is awesome about The Griddle?

You get your own personal French press!

The Griddle is known for their HUGE and super sweet pancakes. I’m sure there is other stuff on the menu besides pancakes but seriously, why bother? The fact that the pancakes are so large and sweet informed my choices. I only ordered one pancake and I chose one of the “less sweet” types.

Danielle went for the Nutella French Toast:

See what I mean about large and sweet? I didn’t save room for a bite of her French toast but she said it was delicious.

I opted for the Honey, Cinnamon and Rolled Oats pancake.

In the words of Danielle, “even when we go to The Griddle you order something healthy”. HA! Only healthy because of the rolled oats and I love rolled oats. I only ate about half of this pancake. Can you blame me? The pancake is literally bigger than the plate! The oats cut the sweetness a little bit and the honey was just the right amount of sweetness. Oh, and obviously we added maple syrup.

We also ordered bacon, you know, to chase the sweet pancakes with.

It was so good that Danielle couldn’t wait until after I took a picture to dig in.

Overall, I still love The Griddle. Perhaps because I went for the first time a week or so after arriving in LA it feels like quintessential LA to me. I need to go more frequently and remember that it’s a great place to bring out of town visitors. The lines on Saturday and Sunday are insane but we didn’t have to wait early on a Thursday so check it out on a weekend if you can because otherwise you might have to wait for an hour for service.

What is your favorite breakfast dish? I don’t really like eggs all that much, so for me breakfast is all about pancakes and bacon!

Coffee recap

April 27th – III (3)



April 28 – IIIII (5)






April 29 – III (3)




April 30 (II) 2


Can of Diet Coke while taking an exam.

May 1 II (2)



May 2 (IIII) 4





May 3 (IIIII) 5






May 4 (IIII) 4





May 5 (IIII) 4


French Press (3 cups)


May 6 (II) 2

+ 1 Latte during my exam

May 7 (IIIII) 5






May 8 (III) 3

Medium Latte, Coffee in the library (illegal, don’t tell anyone), Large latte

May 9 (II) 2

Ice Tea +


May 10 (II) 2



May 11 (II) 2

Medium Latte, diet coke all consumed during exam

May 12 (II) 2

Large latte, cup of coffee all consumed during exam

GRAND TOTAL: 50!

Congrats to Whitney! Email me at leftcoastcontessa@gmail.com to collect your prize!

Finals ended yesterday with a 4.5 hour exam that started at 8:15. So evil to have an exam that long start that early. Yesterday was a pretty epic day. There was Arrogant Bastard day drinking, Ethiopian food for dinner with friends, and dancing at the end of the semester party.
It was an awesome celebration of the fact that we only have one year left! This summer hold some fun adventures including plenty of event with blogger friends, a half marathon in San Diego, a trip to Boston, moving to a new apartment (hopefully), one of my best friends weddings, countless happy hours, epic meals and fun times ahead. I want to get back to blogging recipes and regular blogging (sorry for the random hiatus, finals owned my life last week).

Last Day of 2L Classes!

Flashback: Last Day of 1L classes. My professor sang to us and read a beautiful poem. Check it out!

Today is a beautiful day for two reasons. First, it is sunny and warm.

Second, as of around 8:30 pm tonight I will have completed my second year law school classes! Only 4 exams and some paper editing stands in the way of me being 2/3 of the way done with my law school career! I cannot believe how quickly the past few years have gone by. It seems like just yesterday I was 20, finishing up my junior year and studying diligently for the LSAT. In reality that was 3 years ago!

So many changes have taken place in my life since then. Hell, so many changes have happened since 2 years ago when I was making decisions as to where to go to Law School and graduating. I was so terrified to leave a city that I considered my “forever home” but I have never regretted my decision. If you told me two years ago what my life looks like today I wouldn’t have believed you or even wanted all of the changes. It’s not necessarily where I thought I would be at this time in my life but I love everything in my life and am so happy with where I am today. Los Angeles is my happy place, my forever home and I am so so so ridiculously blessed to be where I am. Life has turned out so much better than I could have ever planned.

So how does one celebrate the completion of another year of school (my 19th!)?

Iced non-fat sugar-free latte from Coffee Bean, obviously. So refreshing and delicious!

So now that classes are ending, what do the next few weeks hold?

  • I have 4 exams and a paper due before I’m DONE. I have a small exam Saturday, another exam the week after, and two exams and one paper due the week after. The 10th, 11th and 12th of May are going to be crazy big deadline days for me!
  • My “reading period” lasts for 9 days before my first real exam (Saturdays exam is only worth a fraction of my grade). This seems good and relaxing but it’s not as good as it seems. I need to remind myself that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. There a lot of unstructured, “work from home” time and I need to be on it with the planning. Definitely, not a vacation especially since one exam determines your entire grade for the semester and you’re judged on a forced curve against some of the most brilliant people I’ve ever met.
  • I have many practice tests to take and outlines to tweak before taking my exams.
  • I have three review sessions this week (one is going to have BBQ from Crenshaw! <- insanely excited for this!)
  • She Run’s LA is on Thursday + 10k run on Thursday before She Run’s LA.
  • Plenty more running and yoga to stay in shape, don’t forget that I have a half marathon in June!
  • And when exams are over? Party, party, Irish Car Bomb, party, sleep, party! I’ll have two weeks off before starting my summer internship and I cannot wait for my time off.

Don’t worry, I’ll still be blogging! Expect some quick eats, running recaps, countless youtube videos, and many pictures of cups of coffee!

And now for a giveaway!

We all know how addicted to Coffee Bean and Starbucks I am. Finals period this semester lasts from 4/27 – 5/12. During finals, I am going to keep a running tally (through photos) of how many caffeinated drinks I consume during that time. This will include any drink with caffeine from coffee shops or made at home which of course includes coffee, iced tea, lattes and caffeinated soda. A refill of a drink (like when I sit at Panera for 4 hours and get 5 refills of iced tea) will count as a separate drink. It’s by the number of cups, not the size (too complicated).

If you want to participate, leave a comment on this post guessing how many caffeinated drinks I will consume between 4/27 and 5/12. The person who guesses closest will win a gift card from either Coffee Bean OR Starbucks, your choice! I am funding this giveaway myself to show my loyal readers a little love. The deadline for entering is 5 pm Thursday, April 28th. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate! A winner will be announced 5/13 and I will upload the proof of the coffee I’ve consumed that day.

SO, how many drinks will I have?

Saturday means…

Latte from Espresso Profeta in Westwood

Starting the day with a latte from Espresso Profeta! Not only is it the prettiest latte in Westwood but also the best in my opinion. Don’t get me wrong, I love Starbucks and Coffee Bean. I can hang out in the arm chairs at “It’s a grind”. However Saturday AM isn’t Saturday AM without an Espresso Profeta latte. The frothiness of the foam mixed with high quality espresso is heavenly. Also, the staff here knows coffee. Seriously, they know coffee. Don’t argue with them or ask for a large size, you will get stared at like a freak if you expect a jumbo 20 oz beverage like you would get at Starbucks. The drink might not be as large but it is far, far better.

Espresso Profeta
1129 Glendon Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90024