Welcome to my blog where I document my adventures in food and travel. Stay awhile and say hello at firstname.lastname@example.org
Your Weekend Guide for Food & Travel
Oh hey! I'm Taylor and welcome to Have a Good Weekend.
Have a Good Weekend is a collection of everything I enjoy doing during my days off from work - mainly dining in, dining out and traveling. I hope this site can become your resource on ways to spend your free time.
I like surprises. Or rather, I like expecting one thing, and then experiencing something better in return. One pleasant surprise I discovered about a year ago, was the Flowerboy Project in Venice, Calif.: a cute little spot (CLS) that is as much about coffee as it is about flowers and quirky gifts - for you or someone special.
When I began working at Esters Wine Shop & Bar, I would send guests looking for Italian wines like Barolo and Barbaresco, to colleagues for assistance. At the time, the only Italian wine I was familiar with was Pinot Grigio, and bad mass-produced Pinot Grigio at that. I knew little about Italian wines until I began buying bottles of them. I started with Nebbiolo, a grape that produces full-bodied and aromatic wines.
I can't tell you about the beaches of Cancun, although I'd probably tell you to avoid Señor Frogs if you're past the age of twenty-five. I also can't tell you about Puerto Vallarta, Cabo San Lucas or Tijuana - I've never been. But I can tell you about Mexico City, one of the best places to visit over a long weekend. I can tell you where to get the most comforting and steaming bowl of pozole, or where to find the best view of the Palacio de Bellas Artes. I've been to Mexico City.
Forget about pairing food and wine for a moment, and think back to the last time you had a glass. Where were you? Who were you with? How did you feel? Ever notice it’s often the occasion or the company we are in that determines how we enjoy a glass of wine? So instead of subscribing to the rules of pairing Cabernet Sauvignon with steak and roast chicken with Chardonnay, why not pair wines according to an occasion? I chatted with Kathryn Coker, owner of Esters Wine Shop and Bar and wine director of the Rustic Canyon Family of Restaurants, in Santa Monica, California to learn about wine pairings for every occasion. Here's seven wines to pair with seven occasions...
When my friends come to town, I enjoy playing tour guide. It’s fun to see Los Angeles as a bright-eyed visitor again, and it allows me to take a step back from my normal routine and revisit some of my favorite places. Often times, friends have a few places mapped out, but leave the itinerary to me. It's easy for it to become a stressful experience - L.A. extends far and wide and the different types of activities to do are as extensive. So, I've narrowed it down for all of us. Whether you're an L.A. local with out-of-town guests or you're the visitor, here's my list for 5 Things to Do in L.A. When Your Friends Come to Town.
My weekends are for baking projects. For inspiration, I turn to my kitchen counter stacked with dog-eared cookbooks and a web browser maxed out with “favorited” baked good recipes. Because it’s fall, I’m on a pumpkin-kick (have you read my Fall Bucket List?), but apples have my love as well. Which is why a few years back, I created a mini-apple pie recipe for my YouTube cooking channel, At Taylor’s Table. Sweet and tart apples are simmered in spices and stuffed into mini homemade pie crusts. Think of them as apple pie Pop-Tarts - but so.much. better. If you’re looking to make a fall-inspired dessert this weekend, check out my mini-apple pie recipe and let me know what you think.
I had decided to make travel a priority in my life, and so I cut out a lot of unnecessary expenses to make room in my budget for trips. I didn't need Classpass, and I didn't need to spend $16 on a cocktail every Saturday night with friends. In the end, I managed to make the trip work by decreasing my discretionary spending. So I wondered, how do others afford to travel? What deals do they find? What "wants" do they give up? I asked four friends to give me the scoop.
For the record, I waited until September 22 to eat anything pumpkin-flavored, because you just don't disrespect summer like that. And while I realize I'm sharing my 2017 Fall Bucket List, let's be clear: summer is my favorite season. But fall's cool too. Which is why I'm excited to test out a few new recipes, take a couple of day trips and explore different parts of Los Angeles. It's not too different than what I normally do on my days off, but there are a couple cozy-weather recipes (hi, pumpkin) and traditional fall activities I'd like to do this year.
Recently, I took my first trip and explored the city's tasting rooms, restaurants and cafes. Santa Barbarais often dubbed the "American Riviera", and while the city is beautiful, this was not a sight-seeing tour. I had a full day (and night) in Santa Barbara, and quite literally, ate and drank my way through it, with dining and tasting room recommendations from friends.
I wanted to recreate this board at home, but going to a specialty cheese shop was out of my budget. Instead, I went to Trader Joe's. The selection is extensive and the prices are crazy cheap for the quality of cheese they stock. So a couple of weeks ago for a casual night in with friends, I put together a cheese board for less than $15 with three cheeses found at Trader Joe's. And that's really all you need - three different types of cheese to feed between 2- 5 people.