Tag Archives: ann arbor

What A Week

 

Hi everyone!

So it’s been about a month since my last post. A MONTH. How horrible. Things have been so ridiculously busy that I guess the bloggy just went into the back of the fridge with the baking soda :\ Sorry friends.

I’m glad to participate in What I Ate Wednesday though and you can join the party too by heading over to Jenn’s blog!

 


But I’m back! And let me tell you, this past week has been one of the craziest!

So here’s a highlight from the past week.

REB and I enjoyed the outdoors at our favorite vegetarian restaurant in town, Seva. We sat outside and enjoyed the beautiful sun and spring weather!

Mojito for her, Solar Blast juice for him

We started with an appetizer that was on their specials menu, called the Mediterranean black bean dip. We were intrigued.

It was delicious! It had kalamata olives, black beans, tomatoes, herbs (cilantro and parsley I think), yellow peppers and onions and then a yummy citrus-like dressing. It was so light and refreshing!

Whenever we go to Seva, it’s for their weekly specials menu. It changes every week and it could really be anything! So this time, I opted for the lentil burger. Delicious.

It was so good! It had some crisped kale on it and a yummy homemade ketchup that had a kick. I hope this is something they’ll return to their menu this summer :)

So let’s fast forward to Friday. My favorite day of this past week. Not.

Most of you know that I work downtown, so I have the luxury (and yes, I call it a luxury) to take the bus. That said, I don’t drive my car that often. I use it mostly for running errands after work or on the weekends, or alternating which car we drive when REB and I go some where, or to drop/pick up the dog from Petsmart’s day camp. So I was out on Friday minding my own business in the turn lane, about to turn into a business, and then some jack hole comes out from the left into my turn lane (to use it as a stopping point before merging into the other two lanes no doubt) and runs right into my car, head on.

I was not a happy camper. I was an even more unhappy camper when I saw the damage done to my car.

Sad car is sad

His Mercury Cougar was hardly damaged (externally anyway). Luckily there weren’t any injuries (I had a little neck pain the next day but it’s totes fine now), and he didn’t drive off thankfully. The police came, took down all our info and he was ticketed and found at fault, and then he was allowed to leave. I, however, had to have my little go-kart Cavalier taken to a shop and now we’re in the process of hearing from insurance if it’s repairable. I don’t think it is though. I never take it as a good sign with a collision shop “suggests” that I clean out my car of its personal items and also gives me my license plate. Poor car. It had less than 100K miles on it (only 81K!), and aside from that horrible front-end, everything else was fine. I should hopefully get something for it so we can get a new car at least. I hope!

I’ve never been in an accident EVER, so needless to say, I was a bit shook up and scared. But after all that escapade and a wonderful hug from my husband, I was in need of a drink. So we headed downtown to the rooftop of an Italian place in town, Palio. They have a completely different menu if you sit on the roof than if you sit downstairs or on the sidewalk. But why do we go there?

Sangria. Enough said. It was just the thing I needed after a day like that one. Plus, Friday was nearing a close and I was getting pumped for the weekend.

My friends and I do something we called Family Sunday Funday. It started with just us and another married couple and we’d meet on Sundays to eat dinner and watch Game of Thrones. Then it turned into alternating Sundays and the hosting couple would cook, and then we’d watch Game of Thrones. Then it turned into inviting another friend, alternating dinners, playing Rock Band and watching Game of Thrones. And now it’s included another married couple and has become a family fun night for us – something we’ll most likely continue even after Game of Thrones is finished with it season. So this past weekend it was our turn to host for the Sunday Funday 7 (there are 7 of us after all ;)).

I made an Indian feast.

Yes, feast.

I cooked two of the curries on Saturday so that all I had to do was warm them up on the stove on Sunday. And I made the third one on Sunday. I opted for simple north Indian dishes that I can make off the top of my head, so I wouldn’t have to cook for two days straight.

On the menu: channa masala, aloo mattar, mattar paneer, naan and rice. The first two I made the night before, the paneer I made on Sunday because I wanted to grill the paneer.

Grilling paneer - WIN

I think everyone was pleased with the dinner :)

4 of the Sunday Funday 7

 

This photo courtesy of Amber E. at Adventures of Amberherself

To end the week on a light note, I started taking pictures of how Starbucks has been spelling my name on the cup. It always amazes me that people can’t say or spell my name and don’t even make an attempt to try!

I even spelled it for them and they still put a "T" in there. WTF.

Anyway, hope you all have a pleasant week and I’ll try to not take a month hiatus again ;) <3

What was the best thing you ate or made this past week?

Spring Might Actually Be Here

 

Hiya! It’s Wednesday!!

It’s what I call Wednesday Funday. Wednesdays and Sundays are officially (for now anyway) my favorite days of the week. Sundays are Sunday Funday dinner with our friends and Game of Thrones night. Yeah it’s close to the new work week, but having that last bit of fun makes the weekend just that much better! As for Wednsday? Wednesdays are right in the middle of the week and nothing too stressful ever really happens and each Wednesday night is trivia with my girls! Plus it’s always a What I Ate Wednesday kind of day :)

So I was looking through the pics on my phone and saw that I really only ever took pictures of the dinners I ate. So here are some highlights from this past week!

It’s finally starting to feel like spring. It’s still windy as hell and kind of cold in the mornings, but at least it kind of looks like spring around these parts.

Saw these beauties on my way to the bus stop

We did have some rain though. And the rain prevented me from running outside which I’m always not fond of :P I’m never going to be able to run a race if I have to keep getting my runs in on a treadmill :P But at least the way it feels after the rain (or now anyway) is breezy and pretty instead of hot and muggy like I know it will be when summer hits.

Purty

And with the spring-like weather comes spring-like food. REB and I headed to one of the Zingermans branches (they have five here in A2) for some comfort food and deliciousness.

The first thing on I saw on the menu were these:

I don’t know how they got heirlooms already or how they incorporated it into polenta, but any time I see the word “heirloom” and it’s not in a meat dish, it’s a given I end up ordering that. I also never had polenta before (pause for surprised gasps) and I have to say the texture and flavor was really, really good!! I’m excited to try cooking with it sometime soon!

Polenta aside, there is one reason anyone ever goes to Zingermans Roadhouse. And anyone who tells you otherwise is either naive, a newb or delusional.

Mac and cheese. They have an entire section of their menu with different kinds of mac and cheese. I always usually get the one loaded with spinach and roasted peppers, but this time I tried a new one that’s usually served with grilled chicken, but I 86′d that sucker. It was the Smoked Chicken and Monterey Jack, except no chicken. It had grilled corn, green chilies, Monterey Jack and 2-year Vermont cheddar. Outta site. I was only able to make a small dent in it, but it made for a great lunch/dinner the next day!

So let’s fast forward to Saturday! REB and I went to our first Tigers game of the season. We try to go to as many games as we can each year, but there is one game we never miss: the game with the promotional calendars. If you’re one of the first 10,000 fans, you get a Tigers calendar! Sadly, because of how good the Tigers were last year, the crowd at the stadium was out of this world! I’ve never seen that many people at a Tigers game before. And because of this, no calendars for us :(

It was still a pretty day for baseball, even if it was cold and windy where we were sitting :) It was also a double header and they played like crap for us but then ended up winning for the night game. Thanks guys :P

After the disappointing game, we drowned our sorrows in really good, authentic Italian food at Roma Cafe. It’s an old firehouse near Eastern Market in the D and it is widely known for their amazing, delicious Italian food! It’s rumored that the mafia used go there and might still make some appearances there from time to time ;) It totally has that vibe. The portions are HUGE. I had a LivingSocial coupon to use ($20 for $40 worth of food for dinner!) so REB and I feasted!

REB got the pesto and I got the arrabiata and it was really, really spicy (but really, really good). I had maybe 4 or 5 bites then packed it up had it the next day for lunch. Good stuff!

For Sunday Funday and Game of Thrones night it was our friends turn to host. REB wasn’t feeling that well (turns out he had a sinus infection and bronchitis! Eeps! He’s doing SO much better now, though. I just hope it doesn’t come to me!) so he stayed home. But my friends were so nice that they packed up a little container of food for me to take him to him :) On the menu for Sunday Funday? Veggie burgers, Mediterranean pasta salad, baked brie and I brought dessert! FEAST.

Wine + Brie + Fire = cozy!

The pasta salad my friend Amber made was out of sight!

 

She piled it high with roasted veggies (corn, zucchini, peppers, tomatoes), a little bit of feta and some toasted pine nuts. It was such a spring-like meal that I kind of wished REB didn’t like the portion I brought home so I could just eat it all ;)

And there’s a week of spring-like weather and spring-like food!

Remember to hop over to Jenn’s blog if you want in on the fun!

So what was the best thing you ate this past week?
 

Boring Day of Food

 

For the first time ever, I actually remembered to take pictures of what I ate on Wednesday! It will probably never happen again. It’s also not the most exciting day of eats, but some of the items should come as no surprise to you! So here are eats from April 4!

Breakfast:

Oats with chia and granola, and a big ol’ cup of coffee with sugar free creamer and Splenda! It totally got me through the busy morning I had.

Lunch:

I had my leftover ghallaba pita, some hummus and bread for my lunch. Uh, can we say carblicious. I promptly worked out when I got home to avoid feeling guilt ;) But hey! At least the food got eaten and didn’t go to waste.

Snacks:

Fiberlicious and delicious, these Gnu Foods Flavor & Fiber bars are just what my afternoon need!

As if you didn’t already know ;)

After work:

April 4 was National Walking Day! After the workout, I did my cool down by taking the pup on a much needed long walk.

I think he appreciated it ;) Then again, walks are his favorite thing after fetch and food. It’s the little things.

…Well it was last week. This week it’s been cold, rainy and I even saw a few flurries on Tuesday. Gross. Make up your mind, Michigan!

After a quick shower, I got ready and headed downtown to have dinner with my girls and play music trivia like every Wednesday!

Walked by Faerie Village on my way to the restaurant. I’m sure you’ve seen pictures I’ve taken of the fairy doors around town. It’s probably one of the reasons Ann Arbor is so great! We have fairies living in our little city :) You can read more about the Urban Fairies here. It’s total cute overload ;)

Dinner:

Dinner was at Prickly Pear where I had the sweet potato enchiladas with black beans and rice on the side. I wasn’t a fan of the rice, but those beans are delicious! So were the enchiladas ;)

And just in case you guys don’t think all I ever drink is tea and water…I do in fact drink other things!

As always, if you want to join the party, head on over to Jenn’s blog to find out how! Happy Wednesday!

What’s the yummiest thing you ate over the weekend?

What I Ate Wednesday [But Really Ate Tuesday] – #9

 

Happy Wednesday everyone!!

It really feels like a Tuesday for me since I had Monday off (was traveling back from the Chi) so my week feels all thrown off. No matter because 1). it’s a short week and the weekend will be here again soon and 2). it’s Wednesday which means…it’s time again for What I Ate Wednesday! As always you can go over to Jenn’s blog Peas and Crayons to find out how to participate with all of us!

So here are some highlights from what I ate yesterday!

Breakfast


I was all kinds of out of sorts yesterday morning so I just grabbed a Nutrigrain bar to have my with my coffee. I was actually full after that so I saved my apple for snack time later.

Snack

Not pictured but I had some string cheese! Yum!

Lunch


Since I was in Chicago over the weekend I couldn’t do Soup Sunday so I just grabbed a carton of the Pacific Natural Foods Roasted Red Pepper and Vegetable Lentil soup. I had half a serving of Special K multigrain crackers to have with it, which was a perfect portion for me while I got caught up on some work!

Afternoon Snack


I cut up the apple I had originally planned to have for breakfast and had it with my Laughing Cow Light! It was a perfect little snack and held me over until dinner with REB.

Dinner

So last weekend I was in Chicago and this weekend REB is going to be in Chicago (for work) so we decided to have a date night. It was so beautiful outside so we headed to Zingerman’s Deli located in Kerrytown (historic district).

It’s a pretty expensive deli, that much is true, but it’s so iconic of Ann Arbor! They are famous for their sandwiches. They have the nicest staff ever and you can sample anything in there (and I mean anything) and you aren’t pressured to buy a thing. They are just wonderful! If you go there on football Saturdays, you’ll see a line out the door and around the corner – no joke.

REB and I have tried a few of their vegetarian sandwiches (look how many there are!) and we always try something new each time we go there. We’re running out of things to try, but luckily this time we had something new to try!

I got a small Rodger’s Big Picnic and a side of their garbanzo salad.

Um yeah, I got the small sandwich. I don’t ever want to know what the full order of their sandwiches are! The small is always more than enough! This sandwich had grilled portabello mushrooms, grilled asparagus, Vermont cheddar and a Dijon vinaigrette. The vinaigrette had quite a bite to it – I think it had horseradish in it or extra spicy mustard! It was super tasty though.

REB got the Gemini Rocks the House and a side of their lemon couscous.

His sandwich was tomato, mozzarella and a pesto spread. The couscous was so delicious! Both our sandwiches were so good and we had some good drinks to wash them down too.

Boylan Diet Black Cherry for him and Tropical Crimson Iced Tea (hibiscus, citrus and lemongrass) for her!

It was a beautiful night downtown and wonderful just sitting with the hubby, talking about our day and enjoying the weather :)

Workout

When we got home, we let our food settle a bit then took the dog on a walk. When we got home from the walk REB and I headed to our apartment complex gym. I did 10 minutes on the elliptical on resistance 10, then moved to the elliptical for 30 minutes. I did a shortened version of Andrea’s interval treadmill workout and all in all, burned over 500 calories and did about 3.75 miles! I felt fantastic!

Oh! Someone was curious about what I listen to when I work out. I have a work out mix I’ve had for years and I’ve added a few recent songs on it a couple weeks ago. I absolutely LOVE this mix though. It has a great song in the beginning for a warm up, great drum’n'bass songs when I’m in the zone and then some slower electronic music/Chicago house for when I’m cooling down. It’s a mix I love that lasts a full hour, too!

It was a perfect day in my opinion!! I didn’t eat a WHOLE lot of greens, but I at least had my first grilled veggie of the warm weather! And it was one of my favorite vegetables of all time!


So how did you spend the first day of Spring?
Was it warm where you live?

What [Veggies] I Ate Wednesday – #4

It’s time for another installment of What I Ate Wednesday! I’m on week 4, which is kind of cool! It’s been nice tracking what I’ve been eating. If this is your first time stopping by and you’re confused about what What I Ate Wednesday means, head on over to Jen’s blog, Peas and Crayons, to learn what it’s all about! She’s having a theme for the month of February to remind us all to eat and love our veggies. Don’t let the picture of the macarons fool you, though. I did eat my veggies this past week, but I didn’t forget to indulge juuuust a little ;) Let’s get to it!


Wednesday night we made some Lemon Grilled Tofu with a Mediterranean Chopped Salad. I found the recipe online and then we modified it a touch for out tastes. It turned out fantastic! I will definitely be making this again – especially in the summer!

I had a few appointments to take care of on Thursday, so I worked a half day. I decided to have lunch at home before I took the bus downtown to the office. Usually when I’m home for lunch, I run across the street to Potbelly for a delicious Chickpea Veggie Salad or Mushroom Melt, but I just wasn’t in the mood for something even that heavy! I wanted to eat something light so I searched our kitchen and found some basil and tomatoes.


A very quick and light lunch! I became very fond of Kalamata olives within the past year and I’m glad I finally gave olives a chance! I used to think they tasted how feet might taste (…don’t ask…) but the saltiness of these particular olives is just delicious!

So that night, REB and I decided to use up the rest of our tofu block and made the General’s Tofu recipe that lives here on the blog.


The only difference this time around is that we made it a whole lot spicier and we also added some mushrooms for more protein. Instead of carbing up with brown rice, I just put all the tofu on a bed of steamed broccoli. Delicious! The fun continued with REB wanting to make a very sweet dessert.


We made the Vanilla Poached Pears that you probably saw on the blog last week. It was so ridiculously sweet, but in a good way, and the syrup lasted a few days! REB ended up buying more pears just to dip into the syrup – ha!

On Friday night, I had the real treat of learning how to make macarons from a French pastry chef here in town. She doesn’t own a storefront, but does sell her macarons and other yummy treats at the farmer’s market and also to a cafe here in town. She also offers amateur and professional classes for anyone interested. And I was interested! I had the best time! You can read more about the experience if you’re curious, but can we just take a second and look at how yummy these look?


We still have some leftover, which is good because I have been wanting one for every day since taking the class – whoops!

So on Saturday REB and I braved the unplowed roads and bitter cold and went downtown. We got some lunch at one of our favorite, new vegetarian restaurants Jazzy Veggie. It’s owned by an Indian family and they sneak in little Indian spices and influences in a lot of their dishes – I love it!
I love living in Ann Arbor because they have at least three all-vegetarian restaurants. It’s awesome but it’s also so hard to choose want I want to eat when there are so many choices! Usually it’s easy to pick something out at any restaurant like the veggie burger, salad, or something with beans (that hopefully aren’t made with lard – ew). But when you go to a place that is all vegetarian or even vegan, my indecisive are taken to the next level.

To warm up, we each got a cup of soup. REB got the black bean which was really spicy and hearty and I got the corn and lentil soup that was sweet but also spicy. It was a nice combination!


For the main course, I ordered their Spicy Southwest wrap which had grilled chick’n and REB got the Grilled Chick’n Caesar wrap. Since we both wanted to try each other’s lunch, we just split the wraps so we could try each kind! Both were so good. Both wraps came with fried plantains, which I ate since REB is allergic to bananas and all banana-type flavors.


I like to think of Saturday as my indulging day. More so than the other days of the week. You might ask why. Well, after this most delicious lunch, I went over to Whole Foods and bought a few little treats so that I could make my own Cafe Garamond at home. Cafe Garamond is what we had in Paris at almost every restaurant. It was just a little dessert plate with three mini desserts and some espresso.


Okay, so my version had four little desserts, but it you can’t deny it wasn’t delicious ;)
So if THAT wasn’t enough indulgence, we met some friends for sushi at my favorite sushi place in town. I bought a Groupon to eat there and my friend AE offered to take my portrait for my photo web site. The snow and cold, however, prevented that from happening, but it didn’t stop me from still treating her and her hubby to a thank you dinner. We’ll still take the picture, but I guess it will have to wait until the warm comes!


One of the problems I used to have with sushi after I gave up eating meat, was that I wasn’t as fond of it anymore. When the only options at most sushi places is a cucumber roll or asparagus roll, you aren’t getting as much protein. And this was also a time when I didn’t care of mushrooms all the time. This place has a great roll called the tofu tempura roll. I got that and the sweet potato roll. I also got one piece of egg. It was so good!! We definitely had a feast between the four of us!

So there’s another highlight of a weeks worth of yummy food! Just you wait until next week. We have more culinary adventures up our sleeves this week and weekend!

For all you vegetarians out there, do you eat sushi?
What’s your favorite kind?

A walk through Bandemer

Ann Arbor is full of parks. We’re so lucky there are so many parks. That’s why I think I loved Seattle so much when I was there back in February. It was like a bigger Ann Arbor with more hills and more lush, green parks. Scale the city down about 70% and you’ve got Ann Arbor. Or at least it feels like that. REB and I take advantage of the parks here in town because there are so many trails and as long as the dog is on a leash, he can go with us any where.

Although most of the weekend has been hot and sticky, Friday was exceptionally cool. It was so beautiful outside so we ventured out to a park near the edge of town: Bandemer (pronounced Bandy-mere). It’s right on the Huron River, and the trail goes around the river and up into the woods and hills. I don’t think I could run the thing like a lot of people do, but it’s still a pretty good work out.

Yellow!

 

Family silhouette

 

Family in the sun

These geese weren’t a fan of us being near them and their babies. They actually started charging at Gryff and hissing. Craziness!

Bokeh

 

Look up!

 

 

 

Feels Like Spring

After autumn, spring is probably my favorite season. The summer months are great and all, but it can get really hot here in Michigan. But the great thing about Michigan is we have four distinct seasons. They aren’t equal in terms of how long each season lasts (face it, winter seems like it goes on forever each year), but we do have four seasons. Spring is finally here. At least it feels like it. Although this past holiday weekend brought ridiculously hot and humid weather (90-to-95 degrees and just hot), the past few mornings have been cool and comfortable. And when the sun starts to set and we take Gryff on his second or third walk of the day, that cool and comfortable weather feels even more beautiful.

I’m trying to enjoy it as much as possible because I know soon enough that hot, sticky summer will be here.

The return of Mr. Bunn

 

Make a wish!

Golden :)

 

Tourist in my own Town

Photo walks are a wonderful thing. My sister and I started doing those together when I would visit her and we’d walk around the beautiful city of Chicago. I love taking photos and being able to make time stand still.

I had a half day at work today and knowing it was going to be a beautiful, sunny day, I took Cam with me downtown to take some pictures. I walked all over downtown. …And I do mean all over. I started in the heart of downtown and then walked down to Kerrytown (Korea Town) to get some more awesome pictures! As always, these photos and more can be viewed on my Flickr.


Nickels Arcade is a little plaza across from one of the University of Michigan quads. It’s full of shops, but it’s also a shortcut to get to Maynard Street from State St.


Encore Recordings is one of Ann Arbors vinyl shops. You can get a lot of vinyls for jazz, classic rock, electronic music, etc. Today was the first day I set foot in this store and it is one neat store. The entire place is STOCKED. I think the floor might be the only place there aren’t vinyls…


Across the street and down closer to State St., is Dawn Treaders Book Shop. It’s a HUGE book shop too. They sell and buy used books and have an amazing, extensive collection of them. I’m only upset at myself for not buying one of the vegetarian cookbooks I saw in there!


On my way to Kerrytown, I walked by this beautiful church. St. Andrews Episcopal Church to be exact. The sun was shining it on it so beautifully that I just had to take a photo of it. Once I had the shot, I decided to make it more dramatic and turned it black and white. I like it more this way.


Kerrytown is a neat little place. The first time I had Bibimbop was at the Kerrytown Market. I walked through and got some pretty cool pictures. This one is at the seafood counter. Mmm fish ;-)


The best find I had all day was Spice Merchants spice shop. It was hands down the coolest little store where there are shelves and shelves of spices in huge jars. You can tell the store owner what you want and he’ll weigh it and then bag it up for you.  When I say they have everything, I mean it. Everything from grill seasonings, sea salts as seen above, and exotic spices. I walked out with some black cardamom so I can finally make my own garam masala at home.

So yeah, I encourage everyone to be tourists in their own town because it’s so fun. You’ll be surprised how many new things you’ll discover. There are always new things I’m seeing for the first time in Ann Arbor. I love it. Give it a shot (heh heh). Oh! And again, the link to my Flickr is here. Happy clicking!

Vegetarian Paradise

Seva: I love this restaurant. It’s probably my favorite restaurant in Ann Arbor. Hands down. I’m sure you can guess why. It’s one of (if not the only) vegetarian/vegan restaurant in this entire beautiful, cute city.

I love the tag line: “Fresh imaginative vegetarian cuisine” — ah, I love the sound of that. They just put it all out there, so you know they’re full of awesome.


When you walk in, you have two options: Go into the restaurant straight ahead. Or, you can go downstairs to the comedy club.

Did I mention this place is full of win? Because it is. So yeah, you can eat and then catch a comedy show! (And, REB and I have been to the comedy club a few times and the people they have coming though there are hilarious! But that’s a different post…)


Seva is incredibly quaint on the inside. It isn’t super huge, but I think it seats 100 or so people. I think. The hostess stand is right there when you walk in, bathrooms and bar to the right.

So what’s with that shelf and the hallway?

Those are t-shirts and hoodies on that there shelf. You can buy those t-shirts (I have one in black w/ white writing for around $10. But you might ask yourself, “Um, why do I want to do this?”

This is why:


If you buy a t-shirt and travel (like I do every few weeks), you can take a picture of where ever you are with your t-shirt on, bring in the photo and get a free entree. Pretttttty sweet!


If you prove you’ve been some where with the Seva t-shirt, you also get a pin on their U.S. or World Map on the location of where you were.

I’m guilty of not showing them my photos! I have quite a few. I’m sure I’ve racked up enough entrees for a party of 5 or 6 by now. Should get on that. (–___–;


They have a full-service bar with beer, wine and juice! And their juices are amazing, so definitely check out this area of the place. There’s also more seating around the bar area and near the back of the restaurant.


We were fortunate to be seated in the corner in the front part of the restaurant (past the hostess stand), so I could be a creepster and take a picture of this part of the restaurant. I love the streamer lights along the top and the plants. I love the plants. They make the place seem so green and friendly. The wooden walls make me feel like I’m eating in a cabin.

Sigh. The ambiance of this restaurant makes me happy. I feel at peace, if that’s even possible.

How about we get to the whole point of this place.

The FOOD.

Like I said, it’s all vegetarian, but you meat eaters shouldn’t be super upset about this. There are a ton of great items on their menu that even the meatiest meat eater would be satiated. Everything from North African cous cous, spinach enchiladas, portobello sandwiches and Greek salads, to all vegan items like Tempeh burgers, black bean burgers and tofu eggs.

Before you all start gagging, you should give it a chance!

Tonight, I got the Eggs Veracruz, which was a crispy tortilla topped with black beans, eggs (I got mine done over-hard. It usually comes with over-medium), sour cream, guacamole, scallions, tomatoes and salsa. And some grapes on the side. It was pretty much amazing.

And to move onto my next point: They serve breakfast items all day.

It was more food than I could even eat, but it was oh so delicious.

REB got a char-grilled vegetable and goat cheese wrap with a cup of potato & leek soup (also known as vichyssoise). He let me try his soup and it was TO. DIE. FOR. I swear to something/someone divine and holy, it could have been made by the Late and Great Julia Child. …Except it was made with vegetable stock instead of chicken, of course.

In addition to outstanding food, the service is wonderful. We were served by one of the most friendly, and helpful servers. She kept the drinks filled and checked on us often to make sure we were happy. The food arrived fresh, hot and looked amazing.

Now, prices can be kind of high depending on what you get. Their lunch menu is the way to go where you can get half a sandwich with a cup of soup, salad, etc. That runs about $7 or $8. The entrees can get spendy and are any where from $10-15. They do have specials on the back of their menu every day (or week), though. They feature a special appetizer, salad and 3-to-4 entrees. They also make note of a wine that would complement the meal well, which is always nice.

So check out Seva! I’ve never had a bad thing to eat there, and a lot of my carnivorous friends would agree it’s a pile of win. So check it out! I know you’ll love it. And if you don’t, tell you love it any way so I don’t cry from confusion.

Jerusalem Garden

Every few days, REB and I have a date night. A lot of people do it, and we do too. It’s nice to be able to forget about work, other people, any thing else really and just focus on spending time together. I love when it happens all the time, though. OK enough gushy stuff.

We went to a place in downtown Ann Arbor called Jerusalem Garden. It’s located right off Liberty St. and is next to another favorite restaurant of mine, The Earthen Jar. We have never been to Jerusalem Garden and I was in the mood for some Middle Eastern food. There aren’t many places around here that have that kind of cuisine. I gave Palm Palace one chance and the place was the biggest disappointment, so we’ve never gone back. Though, I know my close friend B is all about that place.

Anyway, we loved Jerusalem Garden! It’s a quaint, little place that doesn’t seat a whole lot of people, but the prices are very reasonable and the portions are great. It reminded me of my favorite Middle Eastern place in East Lansing, Woody’s Oasis.

When you walk in you’re in the kitchen! You have the option of being seated (sign not pictured, but is to the right), or you can eat at the bar or order take out. If you go past that wooden post on the left, there are high-top tables if you choose to eat up front near the grill.

Should you choose to dine in (which I recommend), simply wait to be seated. You’ll be taken up three little steps and then into the back of the tiny building to the seating area. Bathrooms are located all the way in the back behind the curtain. There is additional seating outside, which is of course used during the warmer months.

As you can see from the prices, this place isn’t that bad at all. And, like many places in Ann Arbor, they have an entire section of vegetarian dishes. This place already was a winner for us!

We decided to get an appetizer and ordered the hommus served with warm pita. We also each got the lentil soup (which to me, is basically like eating dal straight up).

This portion was enormous! Granted, it was the large, but we didn’t expect it to be this much! Overall, it tasted really good. I could definitely taste the tahini and garlic. I wish it was a little more spice though. Fear not! They have hot sauce sitting right on the table. I had to add a few dashes of that into my soup. I love dal, but I need the heat.

I ordered the falafel sandwich with fattoush. I was in heaven. This was an amazing sandwich! It was warm, flavorful, fresh and seasoned so well. All the vegetables tasted fresh and crunchy and the hommus was an excellent condiment. I could only eat half since I was so full from everything else, but the other half came home with me to be eaten later. REB got the plain falafel sandwich, which he gave two thumbs up (and a big satisfying smile).

Overall, I give this place two very big thumbs up. The service was outstanding and our server was really friendly. The prices are more than reasonable. We got all that food for around $20. Not bad at all. Location can kind of stink, since it is downtown, so you either have to find street parking (unless that’s all for residents living on that street), or park in any of the parking garages in downtown Ann Arbor (which isn’t horribly priced for the amount of time we spent downtown after dinner).

Definitely give Jerusalem Garden a shot! I was really pleased with everything there and will most definitely make a trip back!