Winter Vacation Tips: Food Tour – Key West Food Tours

I can’t believe the holiday season is over. The crazy thing about the wonderful high of the holiday season, is the crash that comes just after the new year.

Many people, including myself, use this time of year to set goals, readjust priorities, and travel! I’m not a travel expert, but I do know that the U.S. winter season is a great time to travel near or south of the equator since it’s much warmer there.

We recently took a 4 day Royal Caribbean cruise that stopped in Key West and the Bahamas. We’d been to the Bahamas before but were excited to finally visit Key West. We’ve found that one of the best ways to learn about a new city and experience the best food is by taking a local food tour.

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We decided on KEY WEST FOOD TOURS and we were not disappointed! I wanted to give you a quick snapshot of our tour in hopes of encouraging you to try out a food tour on your next vacation. This might give you some ideas for the next time you’re in Key west or it might give you an idea for something new to try if you like traveling and if you like enjoying local food.

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The first place we visited was El Siboney a Cuban spot located at 900 Catherine St. This quaint restaurant was a great place to start our tour. We were served bread, beans, rice, and some of the best pork I’ve ever had. Our guide discussed the history of the restaurant and shared some of the stories behind this traditional cuisine.

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Our second stop was to Bad Boy Burrito located at 1128 Simonton St. Food Network celebrity chef Guy Fieri stopped here for an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives and tried out their Cayo Hueso Fish Tacos. We had the opportunity to do the same and I’ll admit it was a very delicious taco! My only warning is that it’s very spicy, so be prepared with a tongue cooling beverage.

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Next, we walked over to the Speakeasy Inn Rum Bar and they served the tour participants a local rum runner cocktail. This was a tiny restaurant but if you’re into rum, this would be a good place to stop. There were some fun tidbits of history here and I was pleasantly surprised to learn how this stop shared so much Key West history!

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Our next stop was to Camille’s Restaurant. I loved this stop because it was my first time trying conch! We had Fried Conch fritters and I’m happy to say, I’m obsessed! I’ve heard horror stories about conch fritters but I think I can safely say this place does a great job making a fritter that’s not to doughy and that is bursting with flavor.

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Blue Heaven Restaurant and bar was such a neat stop. I felt like I was walking into a secret garden. The Key West island is a little bit of paradise, but this outdoor/backyard restaurant is its own piece of paradise. Here we were served Traditional Key lime pie and although I’m a huge fan of the Publix version, it’s got nothing on Blue Heaven’s version.

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Our last stop was to Key West Distilling. Here we were given a tour of the distillery and those who were interested, were allowed to taste their finished products!

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We truly enjoyed our Key West Food tour and recommend it to anyone who plans to travel to Key West soon. We opted for the Key West Food Tour over the one provided by our cruise line and it was definitely worth it! If you’re interested, visit www.keywestfoodtours.com for more information and to book!

 

 

Santa Monica Breakfast: Bru’s Wiffle

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I love breakfast foods. I can’t say that I eat breakfast everyday (because I don’t), but I do take every opportunity to include breakfast ingredients in my day to day meals. Add a sunny side up egg to a rice bowl. Include crispy or candied bacon on a burger, and oh man, have you ever have savory waffles? They’re delicious.

This year William and I traveled to Santa Monica and the highlight of many of our trips is always the food we eat. One restaurant that’s stuck with me is Bru’s Wiffle. A great waffle joint located a few blocks away from the pier.

Restaurant: Bru’s Wiffle

Location: Santa Monica – 2408 Wilshire Boulevard Santa Monica, CA 90403

Food Type: Breakfast/Brunch/Lunch

Bru’s Wiffle is a waffle joint that has 2 southern California locations: Santa Monica and Beverly Hills. They use fresh ingredients and everything’s made from scratch. The restaurant serves cute little waffles that are great for kids and they even have gluten free options.

We got to the restaurant just when they opened and were greeted by such nice employees. We sat down and immediately ordered the hash browns stuffed with mozzarella cheese. Although it sounds simple it was absolutely delicious… I’m still trying to figure out how they did it.

William ordered the meat lovers omelette. This ultra filling omelette is made with turkey sausage, pepperoni, bacon, mozzarella cheese & avocado and topped with a blazing sauce. He also ordered a standard waffle as a side. The waffle was delicious but probably not something you would want as a “side item” because it’s just as filling as the omelette.

I’ve saved the best for last. I ordered the Golden Goat waffle. Holy cow, it’s 4 of my favorite food items combined into one breakfast entree. It’s a waffle topped with fried chicken, honey, and goat cheese. I’ll be honest, it’s probably one of the best waffles I’ve ever had!

My hope is to come up with a recipe so that you can recreate this entree at home… It’s not like everyone can just zip over to Santa Monica for breakfast!

If you are ever in the LA area, make sure you check out Bru’s Wiffle. I promise, you will not be disappointed.

 

Sometimes breaks are needed, but I’ll be back!

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It’s been a while. I’ve had 6 drafts sitting on my site. 6 fully or partially written drafts that I just haven’t haven’t felt compelled to post.

The first is about my easy mashed potatoes. The second is a post about our Asheville trip and a restaurant that had oysters on almost every menu item (even in the beer). The third is “tales of travel” from the cruise we took last year. The fourth, a quick no recipe lunch. The 5th, a gift guide for the foodies in your life. The final, is a recipe for one of my “famous” Sweet by Lauren cakes.

They’ve all been there but for some reason I felt they haven’t been worthy of the blog.

In the last 6 months I’ve done so much: reached goals, traveled, cooked, entertained, and none of it has been documented here. I hosted Easter brunch for the second year in a row. I graduated from graduate school and became only one of two women in my immediate family to do so. My sister had her second child and I threw what I thought was one of the most fun events I’ve thrown in a while for her shower.  I’ve traveled to Florida twice, South Carolina, and North Carolina. So many great meals, events, and recipes but all still in my head or scribbled on a piece of paper somewhere.

Life has happened and for some reason I haven’t been compelled to share. I know that blogging is just an opportunity for me to share a little bit of my life with you and my goal is to do better.

A little pinch here and there can create one of the best plates you’ve ever seen! Hopefully those plates can turn into an amazing party! The purpose of this blog is to share that with you!

I hope you enjoy every step of my journey as I continue to share my life with you.

More to come soon and don’t worry, I’ll definitely be posting that cake recipe!