Cafe Cortadito Exterior

Our last #MiniMimosaholic took us to alphabet city where we indulged in the amazing Cuban food at Café Cortadito. I have been to Café Cortadito at least 5 times, with groups of friends, with just 2 people, for birthdays and for my birthday. I’ve even attended with Casandra, of Food Before Love, on yet another brunch date of ours. Each time, the food and service is impeccable, and I do not ever remember seeing anyone leave hungry or dissatisfied. The restaurant is small compared to other popular brunch spots so book in advance, and, prepare to wait outside because there isn’t any waiting area inside.

My favorite part of brunch at Café Cortadito is the wide array of bottomless drink options that they offer. They have everything from margaritas to mojitos, sangria, and even beer. The mimosaholic in me always goes for the tropical mimosas which are a fruity twist on the traditional mimosas. This time around, we got a pitcher of the champagne mojitos and although I am usually a fan of mojitos, these were my favorite honestly. The added champagne made it a lot stronger than expected and I found myself babysitting my drink. Next, we tried the champagne margaritas, but these were even stronger than the mojitos and almost difficult to finish. So, trust me and stick to the tropical mimosas or white sangria.

Cafe Cortadito Exterior
Photo by www.cafecortaditolacuisinedecubanyc.com

Now to the delicious Cuban food. I’ve tried everything from the french toast to the lobster Benedict, but opted to try something new since everything I’d had thus far had been amazing. This time around I went for the ropa vieja which is a traditional Cuban dish consisting of shredded/stewed beef and vegetables. This one was not only filling but also super juicy and you could taste so many Cuban flavors going to work as you chew. YUM! A few other favorite dishes included the calentado which was a steak with a fried egg on top, served with rice, and a sweet plantain omelet.

Overall, Café Cortadito is still a spot I highly recommend for brunch, and was a great spot for our second monthly brunch meetup. This brunch ended with some guests talking about the Little Italy in the Bronx, and hosting a #MiniMimosaholic there. So, Bronx followers, be on the lookout, you’re up soon!

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Common Foods Video with Danielle Fontus

If certain words such as chipotle, espresso and acai make you nervous, you are not alone. Some foods are admittedly easier to pronounce than others. And some make you pause every time you read them. But we are here to tell you that there is no shame in needing to take a minute and sound a word out before ordering. You shouldn’t let anything, let alone pronunciation, stop you from enjoying what otherwise could be an unforgettable dining experience filled with good food and laughter.

Have you ever decided to be fancy and hit up a restaurant you’ve never been to? You dress up, fully willing to broaden your food horizons. But the minute you get the menu and eyeball a few of the dishes, you regret it all. You don’t know how to say any of the selections or if you even want to eat any of them. All of a sudden you’re back in elementary school with beads of sweat on your forehead as you sound out syllables at the table. It’s not a good look, but it is a common dilemma we’ve all faced. However, it doesn’t have to be. Ordering delicious meals should truly be the time of your life.

And that’s why we’re here: to help guide you through those awkward restaurant encounters. There’s no better time than the present to improve your food vocabulary by learning the real way to pronounce common dishes. We continue our handy guide with the help of our friend Danielle, Creator of the She Dares community. The next time you see one of these items on a menu, you’ll impress your friends and bae by sounding like an expert.

  • Edamame – A boiled soy bean, which can be a snack or appetizer before the main dish

  • Lychee – A white fleshy fruit

  • Chipotle – A smoke-dried jalapeño

  • Espresso – A coffee brewed by boiling water under pressure

  • Acai – A reddish-purple fruit.

     

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The Chef burger Korzo

The last best burger I had was at Korzo. Buried away in Brooklyn. I first learned of this decadence in our Facebook Group. Wanting to give it go, I went by with a friend to see why this was featured on the Chew. I’ve since been back for our monthly bite at nite series where we each indulged in a different burger and enjoyed a few appetizers as well. We made early reservations on both occasions which is really important because Korzo gets packed. The front of the restaurant has plenty of room to maintain the crowd but everyone is trying to get a seat at the tables in the back. Each table is adorned with condiments, including beets which I mistook for BBQ sauce. Luckily for me, we realized this before I poured it all over my fries or burger.

Korzo Chef Burger

We chose the pierogie’s, fried cheese platter and mussels to start and share. This was the perfect idea and helped us keep the bill under $50 for each guest, with drinks. On my initial visit, we also tried dessert which was overwhelmingly delicious. They served us a fried dough plate topped with whipped cream and fruits. Korzo is the place for any glutton.

The Chef burger Korzo

The burger I had both times with no regrets was the chef burger, cooked medium. The burger consist of a dry aged ground steak blend, with Monterey jack, smoked bacon, spicy Hungarian peppers and cognac spiked berry gastrique. The art of the burgers at Korzo is that they deep fry it a Hungarian dough. Instead of being met with a heavy burger bun, you’re biting into a soft, semi-sweet dough that holds all the juices inside. There’s just the right amount of room to squeeze your condiments in and the heat of the peppers stands out immediately. They make about 4 other burgers in this style but the chef burger is my favorite so far. I’ve had a chance to bite two others on the menu and they still don’t compare. If you’re looking for an amazing NYC Burger then Korzo needs to be the next place you go.

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Brunch Meal Essex Restaurant

The Lower East Side is one of my favorite neighborhoods to go to when I’m in the need of brunch. So of course, for the first #MiniMimosaholic we went to the LES staple Essex to try out their brunch. We went on a Sunday around 1:30 and it was pretty packed so I would suggest getting a reservation in advance to avoid a long wait. Essex has a downstairs level which has a few tables and the bar, and we were seated upstairs on the balcony level that was overlooking the bar below.

Mimosas Essex Restaurant

First the drinks. Essex offers unlimited mimosas, bloody mary’s, and screwdrivers, but our table stuck to the mimosas. We all know that nothing is worse than a bad mimosa. Either the ratio is too much orange juice, or the champagne tastes cheap, you know the ones. Well Essex has neither of these problems! The mimosas had the perfect OJ to champagne ratio, that being more OJ of course, and our waitress made sure that our glasses were never empty.

Brunch Essex Restaurant

I was so excited to see that Essex offered my all-time favorite brunch item, lobster Benedict. I have high expectations for my Benedict’s and this one didn’t disappoint. There was a lot of lobster on the dish, and it was very flavorful and juicy. It came with some home fries that were crispy just as I like it. Other guests went for the classic steak and eggs, and based on how quiet the table was once the food arrived, I am sure it tasted great!

Guest Essex Restaurant

Another thing I loved about Essex was that as our 2 hours of bottomless came to an end, our waitress topped our glasses off and let us know we could continue the fun downstairs at the bar. Once down there, we indulged in more laughs and mimosas, which the bartender kept flowing for us for at least another hour. We also ordered some hand-cut French fries which were to die for. It was a great start to our #MiniMimosaholic series!

Brunch Meal Essex Restaurant

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Traveling While Hungry Facebook

Traveling is one of our favorite pastimes. Nothing is more exhilarating than a new adventure, a change of scenery and amazing experiences you will never forget. But what’s most thrilling? Exploring foods unlike any other we have experienced. That is where the idea for Traveling While Hungry came from.

Traveling While Hungry is a group travel series created for the millennial traveler who wants to take in a new city or country while embracing the native foods of the area. And while it isn’t possible to stop into every great restaurant in town on a one-day trip, it is possible to get a sampling of some of the best foods a city has to offer. Who wants to eat junk food on their entire vacation? Or spend unnecessary coins on hotel room service? Not us. And do not even think about finding a restaurant on your own. Searching for a place to eat via never-ending Yelp reviews is just plain time-consuming. 

Because the focus of this travel series is placed on good food, not just the destination, you can uncover hidden restaurants you wouldn’t otherwise know about. Hitting the road every once in a while to treat yourself to deliciously unique foods is the best. 

The plus is that you do not have to do it alone. During our trips, you can eat whatever your little heart desires with individuals who love food just as much as you do. You will be with people from all walks of life and a variety of interesting places. You can be as spontaneous as you want all while developing new friendships. It takes away the anxiety of traveling and dining alone. 

Want more information on our next stop? Be sure to head to our Facebook group for all the latest updates and discussion.

Watch a clip from our trip to Colombia here.

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Seafood Cauliflower Cuca Restaurant
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A few months ago, I visited Bali and one of the first restaurants we went to was Cuca Flavor. After some extensive research for our group trip, Cuca Flavor came up multiple times as one of the best in the town. I recently shared how to best prepare for Bali and things you should know before organizing some time there. There are many food options to choose from and it can be quite overwhelming to find the right one.

Initially, what I loved about Cuca Flavor was the atmosphere. The restaurant has plenty of open space, fabrics draped down from the high ceilings and simple, distinct touches that pull it all together. Their ingredients are sourced directly from Indonesia and cooked in an open kitchen. We had the pleasure of having the restaurant all to ourselves and got to peek into what the chef was preparing for the evening.

Travel Group Cuca flavor Restaurant

We decided on the chef’s tasting menu which includes tapas for the whole table. We even got to indulge in desert together. Before we grabbed bites to eat. I ordered a Tokyo mojito which came with a ice ball in the glass. The benefits of ice balls are that the ice melts a lot slower than a smaller cube would, releasing less water into your drink. It also looks really cool and put Cuca Flavor on the higher end for me as far as presentation goes.

Corn Cuca Restaurant

At least 10 or more plates were brought out to our table. Everything from meat and potatoes, to black squid risotto made it our tastebuds. The roasted pork buns ended up being the crowd favorite. Honey glazed bbq pork just had to happen for us again so we ordered another round. But amongst us were roasted baby roasted corn, bbq octopus and a honey baked pumpkin salad. The corn was soft and crunchy and had just the right amount of cheese on top.

Seafood Cauliflower Cuca Restaurant

The octopus however, was more refreshing laying over a bed of asian gazpacho. The cauliflower was sweet and the dish was fresh, easy to share amongst friends. The pumpkin salad was more unconventional, none of us having tried something quite like it before. The best part about the dish was that the green beans were really creamy and that softness against the crunch of the granola was a match made. The pumpkin has more depth to it so it really rounded out offering.

Chefs Table Cuca Restaurant

The experience is said to be on the higher end pricing wise for Bali but we all still felt it was a pretty affordable one. I would certainly return again and find time during the day to dine. The feature a garden and outside seating for guest who wish to visit then. If you’re planning a trip to Bali, visit Cuca Flavor before you depart.

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