A grape end to the work week

Last night Bo and I met after work at the corner between our two offices. Neither of us were hungry for dinner yet as it was only 7pm. Therefore, we decided to do one of our favorite things and walk aimlessly through the streets of NYC. The energy is wonderful, we always discover something new, and we absolutely love roaming through new neighborhoods finding little bars, shops, or restaurants. I have fallen in love with the city’s energy; especially after a long day at work. We walked 40 blocks down (3.2 miles) to Avenue A where we came across a restaurant we tried for the first time this summer, Grape and Grain. We were worried that there wouldn’t be space as this restaurant only seats around 40 people. Luckily, we were able to squeeze in at Against the Grain, the craft beer bar. We were given two stool as the bar and found ourselves cozy against the candlelight, exposed brick, and wonderful wine selection.  I enjoyed a glass of Syrah while Bo sipped on his favorite chocolate lager. The side bar serves the same menu selection as the main restaurant and therefore we were able to indulge in the same wonderful food and service we enjoyed this summer. Grape and Grain is known for their small plates which are influenced by northern italian flavors but range from white bean dip all the way to scallop ceviche. We shared the white bean dip and beet salad for starters. The beet salad was wonderfully sweetened by balsamic vineger and then balanced with goat cheese. The white bean dip was not my favorite as the pita chips which accompanied the dish were very spicy. In fact, at one point, we couldn’t find our waitress so Bo grabbed the water pitcher from the bar to quench our mouth’s fire! Dinner however was divine! I enjoyed a small portabello, garlic confit, and roasted red pepper flat bread pizza while Bo was comforted by the short ribs small plate. The garlic confit gave the perfect amount of kick to the pizza while the carmlelized portabellos added some sweetness. I love their pizza because the tomato sauce is fresh and has actual chunks of tomato and seeds in it!  If you’re ever in the neighborhood Grape and Grain is a must whether you want to try their extensive list of by the glass wines or their small plates! Best of all, the prices are very reasonable. We were able to enjoy this meal for under $100 including tax, tip, and alchohol.
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So fresh and so clean, clean

Tuesday night my friend Elizabeth and I met for an evening workout class at Equinox’s Birthday celebration at their 63rd and Lexington location. I was so excited to bring Elizabeth since the celebration and gym were open to guests as well as members. As soon as we entered, a Kiehl’s table greeted us. The table was filled with over 100 small size samples including Acai Damage Reparing Serum, Light Weight Body Lotion, and Facial Fuel. Kiehl’s and Equinox have a great partnership including stocking all NYC Equinox gyms with Kiehl’s products. This is a huge benefit for members as it allows me to use the gym products instead of lugging shampoo, body wash, and lotion back and forth each day. Their products are all natural and good for the body!
Yesterday and today I used facial fuel during my morning gym shower. The name, Facial Fuel, is perfect as the formula truly energizes and wakes up my skin. It cleanses with a mixture of caffeine, menthol, and vitamin E which invigorates while refreshing the skin. This product is for all skin types and did not leave my skin feeling tight or dry. In addition, it removed my makeup which is one benefit I rarely find in other natural facial products such as Burt’s Bees. I this week’s workout reward will be a Kiehl’s purchase from the Equinox store after tomorrow night’s yoga class in the village with Lauren!
What is your favorite face cleanser? Do you normally use the gym shampoo and products or bring your own?
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Have you sipped your greens today?

I’ve always steered clears of juices as they tend to be high in sugar since they are often highly concentrated fruits. Therefore, I’ve never tried green juices or other natural juices in the past. Nor have I envied fellow bloggers juicers or daily juicing routines. However, our Monday trip to the new and updated Chelsea Market changed all of this. As we exited Amy’s Bread, I saw a chalkboard sign for One Lucky Duck. I’ve had the opportunity to taste their all natural treats once before when Melissa of FitnessNYC brought them to the blogger brunch. One Lucky Duck is a fabulous juice and takeaway business which is also associated with the famous vegetarian favorite hot spot, Pure Food and Wine. Their take out business consists of juices, smoothies, sweets, cookies, prepared foods, shakes, and salads. As their website states, everything at One Lucky Duck is made by hand at Pure from local and organic ingredients. This ensures their flavor and freshness! On Monday, the staff was sampling an array of green juice samples. Apprehensive at first, since I am not a fan of cucumber, I took a sample. Much to my surprise, it was love at first taste. The sample I tasted was their Thai Green juice. Thai Green features greens, cilantro, lime, and pineapple. The pineapple helps offset any bitterness from the greens and keep it from tasting too much like grass! After seeing my surprise delight, they offered a sample of their green giant. The kind staff suggested that I test having green juice during my afternoon lows when my energy is drained and I often turn to Diet Coke or coffee. After enjoying my first taste so much, I happily purchased three, planning to enjoy 1/2 of each bottle per day. Thus far, I have absolutely loved this afternoon treat. The greens and nutrients give me a burst of energy while leaving me full and refreshed. Tomorrow will be the real challenge as i’ve saved my Green Monster, the most intense, for Friday. I highly suggest that you try a daily dose of greens either as a morning or afternoon energy boost. If you’re in NYC you can hop over to either their main store at 125 e 17th street or order online at www.oneluckyduck.com/takeaway. In addition, you can follow their inspirational founder, Sarma, on twitter!

I can’t wait to try more of their products! In fact, I hope to soon plan a dinner date with either Bo or my girlfriends at Pure Food and Wine!


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