Week Seventeen [Tacos. Gold. Dimsum.]

Happy Month of May! Week Seventeen was spent with friends and family.  Every time May comes around, I mostly think about all the celebrations that seem to come with it.  A lot of my closest friends celebrate their birthday in May. It's a really fun time for us to gather and catch up from our usual busy lives.

I celebrated one of my best friend's birthday this weekend in Pasadena.  Funny story is she shares the same birthday as another one of my best friends (she's currently celebrating in Japan).  We had brunch at Abricott in Pasadena, CA.

The restaurant itself features order at the counter service.  It's a really lovely place for brunch, they have seating inside as well as an outdoor patio that overlooks Lake Avenue.  The food featured was an interesting mix of classic American breakfast with some hints of Asian fusion.  For example, they have your typical omelets and egg benedicts but the lunch menu features pho and ramen.  A friend say online that they were known for their pork belly - braised in either a spicy or sweet sauce.  I decided to order the Spicy Pulled Pork Tacos.  The tacos came with a side of Kimchi Fried Rice, which was more of a fried rice with some kimchi flavoring as opposed to the traditional korean fried rice with chunks of pork and fermented kimchi sprinkled throughout.  The tacos themselves were very flavorful.  The pork was juicy and with each bite I had the sauce running down my hands.  It came simple with a drizzle of lemon and chopped onions.  Others at the table ordered the Pork Belly bowls. I will tell you, that pork belly was amazing and delicious. It wasn't too chewy but rather marinated so it chewed easily.  The spicy wasn't really spicy but rather just a small hint of chili and the sweet was akin to those traditional korean marinades you would find in bulgogi.

I personally enjoyed sitting outside in the patio and soaking up the amazing weather.  It was an overcast but cool enough for a light sweater. Afterwards, we enjoyed our time in Pasadena and watched the movie "City of Gold" at Laemmle Theater.  That movie/documentary was amazing.  It featured Jonathan Gold and the impact of his writing on the Los Angeles food community and the community as a whole.  It really opened my eyes to the type of person he is, completely different than my initial thoughts of him.  He's incredibly empathetic and humbling and truly understands the importance of the melting pot of people in Los Angeles contribute to the city as a whole.  It was also great to see the SGV highlighted on the map of great food.  Many times it gets overlooked and neglected but there's also a history of family and culture rich cuisines that still continue to thrive and make the SGV what it is today.

Sunday was spent cleaning my room and other various household chores.  I threw away a lot of the posters that cluttered up my room. Part of me was heartbroken but once I saw the visual space that cleared up from doing so I felt really at peace.  I don't think I can ever go FULL minimalistic or full konmari kondo-style.  However, I can declutter a lot of things in my room that don't bring me joy simply because of the space and uselessness it brings. Clearing up wall space opened up my room and it feels a lot more spacier.  Afterwards, since I will be in Chicago on Mother's Day I took my mom and family out for dim sum.  Luckily, a new Cantonese style restaurant opened up right across from our house.  It was really beautiful and the dim sum was amazing. Pricier than most other places but it made up for it in the quality of the ingredients they used, how fresh everything was and most importantly (esp. for Chinese restaurants) was the service.  Waiters were nice, refilled water without asking and no attitude was given.  Not sure if it is because it is a newly opened restaurant but for the quality of service we got I'm down to go back.

Overall, it was a really relaxing weekend. With the exception of Game of Thrones on Sunday...all those deaths and twists made me so worked up.  This week I plan to PACK and plan for my trip.  Countdown 4 (or is it 5???) days.  It hasn't hit me yet but I'm really excited! I also want to try going back to blogging/writing. It's quite therapeutic and calming.  Also, it's a great way to express myself.  I've also been playing around more with the Sony A6300. I'm learning as I go but the pictures that come out are absolutely beautiful.  Definitely, a great investment.  Talk to you all soon!

☕ vivienne

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