Monthly Archives: July 2009

American - FOOD - "The Delicious"

Budget eating at the high end XIV in LA

July 31, 2009

Note: SO I have an awesome guest blogger, Melissa Stephans, who will be giving us regular updates on LA beauty and food!!! I’ve been meaning to get more West coast picks in here, so I’m really excited to have her indulging us :) Hopefully, once I get to relaunch, I’ll include more detailed author bios! Her first entry below:
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terrace-xiv-waterNot all the effects of the economic crisis are that bad, you know. Take restaurants like XIV by Michael Mina for instance, which are trying to lure diners back to the table with budget-themed menus. Every day between 5pm-8pm, The Terrace at XIV offers a special “6ix on Sunset” menu featuring six cocktails and six dishes for $6 a piece.

OK, I know that people-watching on the Sunset Strip while feasting on the exquisite creations of a two-time James Beard Award winner (think Oscars for foodies) for only $6 sounds too good to be true, so here is the full scoop: While this is a great place to meet friends, oogle L.A.’s pretty people, and grab an inexpensive drink, don’t come hungry for more than a bite-sized treat.

The menu offers six impressive food selections, like the Trio of Duck Fat Fries, Lobster Corn Dogs, and Truffle Popcorn (all delicious!)…but they are more focused on highlighting quality over quantity.

Duck fat fries, comes with 3 dipping sauces: BBQ, Ranch and Ketchup

Duck fat fries, comes with 3 dipping sauces: BBQ, Ranch and Ketchup

The duck fat fries are most popular, but before you cringe at the idea of them being cooked in duck fat, just know that’s only meant to add a slightly warmer flavor to the fries.

Hamachi & Ahi Tartare Poppers

Hamachi & Ahi Tartare Poppers

My favorite appetizer is the Hamachi & Ahi Tartare Poppers. I couldn’t understand why they called them “poppers” since they’re not fried. That is, until I popped the crunchy tidbits into my mouth and didn’t stop until the waiter cut me off.

The fun ends at 8pm sharp and the slightly snobby waiter is serious about timing.

Restaurant Info:
XIV by Michael Mina
8117 Sunset Blvd. at Crescent Heights
Los Angeles, CA 90046
323-656-1414
Sunset Strip

-Melissa

Melissa Stephans is a fashionista turned foodie. She recently found her way back to L.A. after a seven year stint in New York.

Beauty - "The Lovely" - Body - Fragrance (perfume/cologne)

Pheromone infused-soaps?

Testers in the pheromone study

Testers in the pheromone study

Found a really interesting article about pheromones in The New York Times. Soap brand, Dial, hosted a study where they blindfolded nine women and asked them if they would pursue a guy based on scent alone.

Three guys used a body wash with pheromone scents, three used a non-pheromone scent, and the last three just worked up a sweat and used nothing at all.

Identified by American scientists in 1959, pheromones are believed to be part of a chemical communication system that signals reproductive readiness and affects other animal behaviors.

Dial isn’t the first to come up with pheromone-infused products — Paris Hilton claims to use similar ingredients in her 2004 fragrance, and Urban Decay Pocket Rocket lip gloss also has synthesized pheromones embedded into the ink on the lip gloss dispensers, according to the report.

One doctor argues that while scent is a factor of attraction, it doesn’t supersede the visual. Read more about this, and which guy the girls picked here.

It makes me think of products like Axedoes the Axe-effect really work, or genius marketing ploy? Thoughts?

x
Shy

BATF Giveaways - Beauty - "The Lovely"

That giveaway you’re all patiently waiting for…

Will be posted first thing Monday morning…I’m just re-organizing how it’s going to go, but it will be well worth the wait! :)

x
Shy

Dessert - FOOD - "The Delicious"

Why this cheesecake is so special

July 30, 2009

havana room

Cuz you probably won’t ever see it unless you’re a (likely cigar-loving) member of the private club, Grand Havana Room (no, I’m not. I wish I was that important). I wonder what the hazing process is like actually.

My friend said it was creamy and not too overwhelming — even the raspberry sauce which he normally doesn’t like was good. Perfect end to a lobster meal.

Sorry for the teaser post. I just had to.

Restaurant Info:
Grand Havana Room
666 5th Ave # 39
New York, NY 10103
212-245-1600
Midtown

x
Shy

American - BBQ - FOOD - "The Delicious"

Doing very cliché things in Buffalo, NY

So, what do you do when you flight leaving from Buffalo back to NYC gets canceled? Stop for buffalo wings — at least that’s what nine brown people came up with.

Family style

Family style

We were directed to Duff’s Famous Wings and took advantage of the lunch special: 5 wings with a side of chili and fries for about $5.95 I think.

Duff's buffalo wings

Duff's buffalo wings

Their chili was decent, but was a little watery

Their chili was decent, but was a little watery

our second side: fries

our second side: fries

Chicken tenders

Chicken tenders

Excuse our gluttony.

They weren’t kidding when they say their medium sauce = really spicy. It was so spicy, I started coughing when I opened my mouth, even before I could take my first bite – that’s how strong the fumes were. That obviously didn’t stop me from eating it. I don’t think there’s much that can stop me from eating actually.

In the end, after our episodes of tearing eyes and running noses, we agreed it was good, but I’ve had better (big ups to Douglas Pizza & Grill in New Brunswick, NJ…I still think about your wings…sigh).

Restaurant Info:
Duff’s Famous Wings
3090 Orchard Park Rd
Buffalo, NY 14224-4639
716-674-7212

x
Shy

Beauty - "The Lovely" - Eyes

A little mascara trivia

I was reading about the origins of mascara and found some interesting tidbits:

  • Mascara dates back as far as the 3400 BC, where the Ancient Egyptians blended kohl, crocodile dung, honey and water. For reals.
  • It is said to have been applied to ward off evil spirits and the ‘evil eye’.
  • The first packaged mascara was made by Maybelline in the late 1800s. They created a cake mascara using petroleum jelly. Instead of a tube, it was a creamy solid mixed by a wand to apply.
  • So why the history lesson? Until recently, I had never seen these cake mascaras. That was, until a visit to MakeUpMania on the LES, a little makeup lover’s dream boutique.

    I was getting my makeup done by Tyrisha there, and instead of a tube mascara, she whipped out a cake mascara made by La Femme.

    La Femme Cake Mascara, $6.50

    La Femme Cake Mascara, $6.50

    So what you do is, wet the brush a little (or just add a couple drops of water directly to the mascara), and mix it until the brush is covered. Then apply to your lashes.

    Besides the recessionista-friendly price (only $6.50), using a cake mascara has a couple more benefits:

    It’s much more hygenic. We all know our eye makeup is especially vulnerable to bacteria, and the tube design of most don’t help that. This is easier to clean and keep germ-free.

    Easier to layer. With most mascaras, it’s hard to build volume. But with these, you can layer on and build upon coats to the amount you want without clumping. If you want it more natural looking, it can just give your eyes a subtle lift too. It’s easy to control that way.

    It’s just cool to say you’re using vintage mascara (minus the crocodile dung).

    Just spreading the knowledge. You can check it out on MakeupMania’s website here.

    x
    Shy